I was at a place in my life where I realized it was time to pause and take a step back for my mental health and well-being to gain clarity on the next chapter of my life.
So, I decided to take a seven-day break from all social media to concentrate on myself, and I'm so thankful I did.
Here's a behind-the-scenes look at my break from all social media and why I would highly recommend it to you.
Too often, not taking a step back to evaluate what's next can be harmful because you've grown since you were last in a position to make a change in your life. I know it's something I've done in the past, and I wasn't about to do it again.
Let me provide you with some perspective on how active I am on social (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Pinterest, and LinkedIn) media. I post on average five to fifteen times a day across all platforms. Some of my posts are prescheduled, while others I go live or create a post on what I believe will be helpful for myself and you. The crazy thing is those numbers do not include my personal social media accounts.
As I'm sure you can imagine, taking a break would be a considerable undertaking and adjustment for me to undergo, but I knew it was essential for my health and well-being to take a step back.
If you decide to take a break as I did, then I highly recommend you sign out of all your accounts on all devices because, without fail, you will check your social media accounts and not even realize you are doing it.
Why now, let me tell you.
During the first three months of this year, my professional life was turned upside down when the two start-up companies I was a part of closed their doors.
I knew this was a possibility (start-ups can be very risky), and I prepared for it financially. However, I didn't prepare for the mental impact and toll it would have on me.
Do I want to get back into the corporate world, maybe another start-up company, or do I want to push all my chips in on ZUP2U.
Whenever you find yourself in a state of uncertainty, there's always pressure to have things figured out as soon as possible. So, I wondered what was next and which direction I wanted to go.
When my companies closed, the first thing I did was let my professional and personal network of friends know that I would be looking for new opportunities soon. So if anything came across their site lines that might be a good fit, please let me know.
Connections are so meaningful in life; whether they are personal or professional, they can help you get in front of the right people at the right time.
Sometimes, the people you least expect come to the front of the fight for you. So take notice, and remember to accept people as they are but place them in your life where they belong.
I applied for a few jobs and had a few interviews, which is something I had not done in over twelve years. Needless to say, I was rusty and out of practice and didn't do very well.
I met with a few former colleagues who mentioned they had positions they thought I would be a good fit. I was excited, they knew me and my work already, so this could be a good thing.
That being said, I was very cautious because they hadn't been fully transparent and honest in the past. I never forget that actions speak louder than words, and this situation is no different.
I am still working on ZUP2U because I enjoy posting to all social media platforms to inspire you to be the difference in your life. It's so gratifying to get a DM from someone I've never met, letting me know I impacted their life.
However, I was still putting so much pressure on myself to find another job as soon as possible, so I could get back to work and feel like a productive member of society.
Then it hit me; what do I want to do?
I could not honestly answer that question and had no idea what I wanted to do. I felt so lost and confused that I knew I had to take some time to figure it out.
That's when my seven-day social media break and mental health and well-being journey started.
The first few days were tough because you get so accustomed to checking your social media accounts that you do it without even thinking. It's second nature, like checking your email.
I recall grabbing my phone a few times and unlocking the screen to check my social accounts, then going wait, what am I doing. You begin to realize how much of a time and emotional suck social media can have on your day and productivity if you let it.
All I can say is that I'm so thankful I proactively signed out of all my accounts on all devices because when I checked my accounts by habit, I wouldn't get sucked in without having to take the step to log in.
The lesson here is that creating another step/roadblock can help you avoid whatever it is you are taking a break from.
During the first few days, I found myself having free time that I was not used to having, so I decided to spend that time wisely.
I committed to reading every day, listening to a podcast, sitting still with no distractions to be alone with my thoughts and feelings for at least 30 minutes, and spending at least an hour brainstorming for my vision board (more on this later) to put my plan in motion.
After the first few days, it became much easier, and I was in my grove of spending some quality time with myself to get clear on what I wanted and needed from my life.
When you take the time to understand why you are in this situation, what role you played in it, what you could have done differently, and what you want next is one of the best things you can do for yourself.
Taking and accepting responsibility for everything that happens in your life is the first step to improving your life. Honestly, if you don't take that step, you'll always be a victim of your prison. The hard truth is your life is your responsibility, and some people cannot accept that truth.
When you take the first step, It's so liberating to put your health and well-being first, instead of on the back burner like we've been conditioned to do. We always say we will get to us later, but that later becomes never, and your body has no idea you are delaying self-care. The reality is the longer you delay self-care, the more your body begins to shut down, and you become less productive and effective in all areas of your life.
In doing this, I quickly learned it's ok not to know your next move, it's ok to take time to figure things out, and it's ok that you don't have to have a plan right this second.
Take time to sit with everything and give yourself some grace.
There's so much pressure from society and ourselves to have everything in our lives figured out and ready to go when something happens. This pressure is self-induced when you buy into the (like I did) hype.
So next time you find yourself struggling with what's next because you've lost your job, recently come out of a relationship, or another life challenge where you find yourself continuing the rat race every day of trying to figure out what's next.
Remember to STOP...
Take a step back and allow yourself to sit with what happened and be present in the moment. Tell yourself It's ok not to have a plan, and take the time to slow down for your health and well-being so you don't put unnecessary pressure to find your next path in life.
You'll be glad you did,
Taking a break will help you put your priorities in order to make the best decision for your future. One thing that helped guide me was my vision board (get your FREE vision board); it helped me prioritize what I wanted from my life over the next year to five years.
This break was one of the best things I could've done for myself, and I came out with a newfound confidence for what was next in my life.
During this time, I was able to get my priorities in order, set my vision in motion, and understand what was important to me and what was not. So now the work begins, and I'm excited to get started.
I cannot tell you how empowering it feels to get clear on what you want out of your life, what role you played in where you are, and the best way to move forward.
In a nutshell, if you are in a place where you're not sure what's next in your life, I highly recommend taking a break from social media (or whatever you need to take a break from) and sitting with yourself and your thoughts.
Having a difficult and honest conversation with yourself can be challenging, but it's something you must do to move forward. I'm not saying it will be easy because it most likely won't be, but I will tell you it will be worth it a million times over.
If you can't truly be honest with yourself, who can you be honest with?
Thank you for your time, and I appreciate your support.