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Treat yourself to a Facebook detox

Vanessa de Largie | Topic Media | Dec 27, 2011

For many of us, the New Year represents a new beginning; a pristine slate to etch new mistakes on. Not only do we feel the urge to de-clutter our life, it also seems to be a time when we want to clean up our minds and bodies too.

We join gyms, make vision boards and go cold turkey on the alcohol and cigarettes. We purchase books on how to create wealth and buy tasteless diet yoghurt, attempting to fool ourselves that it replaces the undeniable loveliness of our favourite chocolate.

By the second week of the New Year, most of us have ditched our New Year resolutions and returned to our guilty, sinful lives. Oh lord, the tragedy of it all.

I think balance is the key rather than all or nothing. Unfortunately balance is one of those elusive states; difficult to attain and difficult to keep.

I do believe its beneficial to be disciplined, to sacrifice, to detox our minds and our bodies, even for the shortest of periods, as we can spring back to life feeling rejuvenated, with more of ourselves to offer the world.

I would now like to suggest a different kind of detox – a social networking kind.

Facebook has become a normal part of our lives, a site many visit every day.

We log on to share our thoughts, our days, to catch up on what our friends and colleagues are up to and to view photos. But are people addicted?

I believe a lot are. I admittedly was and I am proud to say I deleted my account and have been sober from Facebook for four whole months. This choice is not for everyone, but it was perfect for me.

I live my life now in the moment. The time I spent on Facebook is now spent being creative, being physical and last but not least being social with my friends and family in real time, rather than sitting alone behind a computer screen.

I recently noticed on the tram that everyone has their face down, looking at their phone, reading texts or sending them or checking their Facebook or Twitter account. Very few, look out the window or are even aware to the reality and people around them. Is being present in our lives now a thing of the past? Again, and I say this with a mouth full of sarcasm – social networkingOh, please.

This is my suggestion for you this weekend. Deactivate your Facebook account. You can do it for two days or perhaps even try a week. Your Facebook account will still be intact when you reactivate, all your friends will be there, as will your posts and photos. It will just be like taking a holiday for a few days.

Watch the change in yourself. Become aware of how much more productive you come in your time away, how much more present you become in your own life.

Facebook is not your lifeline, you are.

Treat yourself. The rewards are delightful.