Why I quit social media

I’m not posting on social media going forward. Design of a platform shapes the kind of content we create. I want to step out of this ad-driven merry-go round. To stay in touch, please subscribe to my personal newsletter @ https://bnjmn.org/subscribe/

Let me tell you why.

It’s been almost 15 years since Cameron Moll introduced me to the concept of Creation vs Consumption ratios (at least I think you did Cameron!). Over that time period I went from a water-eye’d dreamer of my place in the technology landscape, to a budding viral/commercial filmmaker, to ultimately being on a journey of facing my own demons of discipline, health, and ultimately: the resolve for purpose.

What is my purpose? Broadly, it is to create enough health for myself to where it can overflow to others. To get to my “everest” I’ve set yearly goals along the way for my business and my personal self.

In my 30s I’ve really focused in on the art of routine as a way to hone in my output towards those smaller goals that are so important for me to measure and acheive as I pursue health. If I see I’m making progress on my 20 mile march as Jim Collins calls it, I find myself more at peace with my life. My mother did a great job of instilling that guilt that comes with a life without purpose.

With my routines focused, I’ve learned to wear the same thing almost every day. I’ve learned to excercise at least every other day. To not eat carbs or drink coffee after breakfast. To spend time every day with my family. And the list of “do’s and dont’s” go on. I carve out consistent time in which those things happen because I have made many hard choices along the way to not fill them with other things.

As I eliminate the bullshit from my life- the alcohol, the excessive coffee, the wrong relationships, toxic projects/jobs, I am able to feel and see much more clearly. Minimalism’s gift is focus. Focus and discipline are two skills I always struggled with in my adulthood and thus why elimination is such a crucial tool for me.

Elimination of bad habits and routines are the second most powerful way I’ve been able to change my life. The first is wholesale change of enviroment (partners, jobs, cities, religions) but that is a story for another place.

That is why I am eliminating most forms of social media in my life starting the next few days as I delete, reduce, & automate. I’ll leave my profiles up to re-direct to my blog. My blog will push to most of my social media platforms when I post. YouTube & Vimeo will be excluded from my personal ban because they have paid ad-free versions that I use.

I’m launching a newsletter to keep people posted on my life, writings, and work: https://bnjmn.org/subscribe/

It has been a few years since I deleted Facebook and Twitter mobile from my iPhone, but I’m adding Instagram to that list. Even though I spend maybe 30 minutes a day tops on Instagram, it kills a basic instinct in my life: to create, to speak, to give voice to the true narrative that’s in my soul. I may eventually dive back into these platforms if I feel they actually support the things I’m trying to create, rather than suffocatting. Basiclly I just want to do one thing, really well- and I want to master my medium (front-end design & video) rather than be poor at many platforms.

Why is social media broken? Because its ran by advertising. Why is advertising bad for personal narrative? Because dollars only pay for high notes in the story. The win, the reveal, the triumph. It’s all peaks, there are no valleys. Ever wonder why for every one apology or confession video / pic there are 30 that involve success or social flexing? Its because that’s whats good short term for advertisors.

The truth is we love seeing the whole person, the whole story, the whole hero’s journey. I love saying it like this: Star Wars starts out with our protagonist’s parents being burned to the ground, literally.

We may love the feeling of the peak like the way we love sugar. But we crave and desire the truth, the lows more than ever in our advertising driven social media age.

I’m back. I’m broken- and I’m healed all the same. I’m full of life and passion to see where this takes me.

Comments (2):

  1. Evan

    Aug 22, 2019 at 6:30 am

    This is all painfully, but helpfully true. I’m looking at this as inspiration for new ideas in the way I will live my life as well.

    Reply

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