I Took a Month Off From Social Media and Here’s What Surprised Me Most…

Feb 21, 2024

At the beginning of this new year, I felt like the Holy Spirit was leading me to fast all social media for 21 days. (I actually ended up taking a full month away from social media because I loved the break so much, but I’ll get to more of that in a second…)

For one full month there were no new reels, stories, or posts on my IG account.  Which let’s face it– very few people would blink on eye over– but for me it was incredibly significant. A big part of my ministry and business takes place through social media, so I’ve never really considered taking an extended break. You know, I always through algorithms and engagements and stuff like that would take a hit, etc..  I have often fantasized about stepping away for a period of time (because like most humans I have a love-hate relationship with social media and wonder if the world would be a little kinder if we all just went back to flip phones), but had never given it much more than a thought.

Still, I couldn’t shake the Lord calling me to step away from the daily grind of content creating and the daily time suck of scrolling. 

The first few days away from social media felt foreign. I caught myself picking up my phone and clicking on the IG app icon as an automated response without any real thought to what I was doing or why for that matter.

As the days carried on, I find myself more peaceful, focused, and yep, even joy-filled. It was wonderful, and I prayed and wrestled over whether I would eliminate social media from my life altogether. No exaggerating here. In the end though, I knew social media wasn’t all bad, and that with a clear sense of mission, and a true heart to help and encourage others, my IG account was worth keeping and putting to good use.

I will however, take more frequent breaks from social. I’m toying around with the idea of taking a couple weeks off once a quarter. I’ll let you know what I discover as a build more rhythms of rest from IG into my calendar. 

But for today, let me share with you five key lessons I gained from my break from social media:

1. Less screen time was great for my mental health.

This isn’t necessarily shocking news. After all, we read stats on the effects of overstimulation and exhaustion that too much screen time has on us. Truth be told, I tend to come across those same stats and somehow make myself an exception to the rule. But it turns out, I am less distracted, more present and energized throughout the day when I’m not using my spare moments scrolling the gram.

2. My work improved without the social media breaks.

I was certainly more productive with my time, but what I enjoyed most was that without the usual distractions of notifications alerting me to new posts and reels, the quality of my research, writing and preparation for meetings was more thorough and focused and just overall… better.

 3. The time away was good for my heart.

I wasn’t tempted to compare my situation, season or work to anyone else’s, because I wasn’t exposed to the latest posts, reels and stories. Without that exposure, I just got to live in the real world with my real wins and opportunities, successes and failures. I got to grow in my gratitude and sense of contentment. It was wonderful!

4. I discerned God’s voice more clearly.

The time away from social media downsized the amount of messaging I was taking in everyday, which gave me more moments to be still and present with God. There was one rather profound revelation I was able to receive from the Holy Spirit. It was a big one for me and I am praising Jesus for it! I’m not sure I would have been in the heart space to receive this breakthrough if I had been consuming the same amount of content.

5. I let go of the pressure to always have something new and noteworthy to say.

As someone who uses this platform to teach and encourage others, it’s easy to feel the pressure to always be generating more content. But honestly, I don’t always have something all that new or profound to say. I’d rather pray and PONDER MORE and POST LESS if it means that what I say comes from an overflow of time with Jesus, rather than regurgitating sound bites that garner quick likes.

Thanks for reading!

Why not pray and see if it’s time to take your own break or to limit your time spent scrolling?

And if you do, I pray you discover and experience greater measures of love, joy and peace as a result.