I knew social media were the culprit, but I didn’t know how bad. If you’ve been following me, you’ve probably seen I’ve written about quitting social media for a few times.

It was hard when I was addicted to them and there was nothing else to do because I was anxious to do other stuff. (Anxiety disorder is real.) So I was in a loop, basically.

It was partly the pandemic. I’m not a 100 percent extrovert, so it was okay for me to just stay at home. But I’m not really a 100 percent introvert either. After two years of staying away from the outside world, it has gotten me. I felt better when I got so caught up in something else like a novel series that didn’t have time to check out my phone so often. But then after that I got into the same loop again.

I knew it was bad for me, but I couldn’t stop using it because there was nothing else to do. Or so I thought. Being anxious about starting to do something wasn’t helping.

When you’re on social media, it’s like you can’t stop comparing yourself to others. People try to show off their best lives when in reality their lives probably suck just like any of our lives sometimes. Social media make us feel the need to show off. Your activities, your thoughts, your looks, your stuff, your bodies. And everything has to be very cool or very terrible that they catch people’s attention. Then you start to compare what you have with what others have. And I haven’t mentioned the likes, the comments etc. that affect how we feel psychologically.

It’s actually okay that we’re normal. That we have average stuff and do mundane stuff. But when we look at others having nicer things and better times on social media, we start to feel bad about ourselves.

When we stop using social media and be with ourselves mindfully, things aren’t as bad as we think. Things are just normal. And it’s okay. That’s how most people are in real life. We’re real people not some narcissists. Things don’t have to be perfect or cool.

Right now people in my country including myself are getting over the pandemic. That means we don’t give a shit anymore. We’ve been forced to stay at home for two years and we’ve had enough. So I started to go out again. I got my booster shot and thought it was time.

I go to the pool when I feel like it. I hang out with friends on weekends and do things I used to do. To be able to go out is like to be able to live again. Outside social media, of course. I have actual conversations with people and look at things with my own eyes, not from the screen.

And things are a lot better. I don’t think I’m more extroverted than introverted. I like both going out and staying in, but when you have to stay in so much, it’s not healthy. And what’s a better way to stay away from social media than having a lot of fun outside that you don’t have time to check your phone?