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Lifestyle 2 weeks ago

5 things i learned during my social media break

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last week  i took a 5 day social media break for the first time…ever. i’ve been doing this (influencing / content creation / whatever you want to call it) as my full time job for nearly 10 years now, and i’ve NEVER actually taken off. and i’m not proud of that! even when we are on vacation i’m still shooting outfits or posting on social media. even after having my babies i still shared stuff on social media. it’s hard to draw the line because social media isn’t necessarily always ‘work’, so it’s been hard for me to know what ‘taking off’ truly looks like.

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but for the past couple months i noticed i was just feeling really burnt out, tired, uninspired, and stressed. and idk about you but when i feel burnt out i just want to quit everything. so, this was a bright flashing light for me telling me…it was time to take a break. i worked with my team to clear my calendar for the week so i could really and truly go ‘off the grid’. i deleted all social media apps from my phone and didn’t check it one time for 5 days.

i gotta tell ya: it was glorious, and exactly what i needed. i came back feeling SO refreshed, refocused, and grateful for my job!

so today i wanted to share with you guys the BIGGEST takeaways + benefits i experienced from this 5 day social media break.

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one. sleep

i slept like a baby when i had these 5 days off – part of that is just being off of work and part of that is being off of social media entirely. i plug my phone in in the bathroom each night and don’t sleep with it by my bed. BUT, i’ve gotten into a bad habit of watching people’s stories or responding to DM’s while i’m doing my skincare routine at night. and little did i know…this was really messing with my sleep and making it harder for me to fall asleep at night (bc it got my brain going). without social media, i just put my phone away and didn’t check it at all while i was getting ready for bed. and i slept SO much better

i was also able to take naps during the day which i’m not usually a napper. but because my brain wasn’t constantly thinking ‘i SHOULD be doing xyz’ or wanting to check social media…it’s like my brain could relax and i just…fell asleep! it was amazing!

two. friends IRL

social media is an amazing tool that allows us to connect with SO many people all over the world – friends, family, old friends from college we might not see anymore, or new friends we made on the internet. the downside to this though is it makes you FEEL like you’re being social even if you haven’t actually seen another human or left your house in a few days. when i didn’t have social media, it made me WANT to get out of the house to go see my friends. to make time to go for a walk with a girlfriend or go over to a neighbor’s house to play mahjong! i wanted real, in-person connection with people which is so much deeper and more meaningful than anything you can get from social media.

tbh so many times we can trick ourselves into thinking we are so busy when in reality…we are wasting so much time just scrolling on our phones. i made the time to see and connect with my friends in person and it brought me SO much joy!

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three. comparison / my own person

to be honest, i’m not really someone who would say i struggle with comparison. i hear people say social media can be toxic because they get on IG and think ‘ugh i want her life or her marriage or her kids’ etc etc, and i don’t really find myself doing that. however, when i got off social media i realized how much i compare my success or my business to someone else’s. and i let someone else’s success or growth or opportunities be my ‘measuring stick’ of how i’m doing or feeling about my job. *mind. blown*. i’ll get on IG and see someone else got some incredible partnership or grew to 1 million followers or whatever it might be and instantly think ‘ugh, i suck at my job’ and be really hard on myself.

when i was off of social media for 5 days, i was able to focus in on my own race. i heard a quote that was essentially said ‘be so focused on watering your own lawn you don’t even notice if someone else’s is greener’. during my social media detox i could really hone in on MY why. why I, lauren kay sims, love doing what i do, and why i feel called to this. and what success looks like for me. even if i don’t ever hit 1 million followers or make x amount of dollars. the social media break opened up my eyes to how much i really DO struggle with comparison and WHY that’s not doing me ANY favors when it comes to running this business in a healthy and thriving way! not only that but the break also gave me a clear vision on MY WHY, and not someone else’s!

now that i’m back on, if i see another influencer hit 1mil followers or experienced some major milestone, i am genuinely HAPPY for her and continue to ‘water my own lawn’, or run my own race! and it’s so freeing!

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four. presence

i know this one is so obvious and we all know how distracting our phones can be. but there’s no way i could share this post without sharing the incredible difference i noticed in being present with people, when i didn’t have social media. i wasn’t worried about having to pull my phone out and take a selfie or document the experience. or when i was playing go fish with shiloh i wasn’t also trying to answer DM’s at the same time. i could put my phone away and just be fully present, not distracted, and it made all the difference in my relationships with people but also in the quality of our time together!

this presence also just made a better mom tbh. when i went to the mall with shiloh on friday – we went to lunch and went shoe shopping and i just didn’t feel rushed or in a hurry. (again, this is also because i wasn’t working so it’s not ALL because i didn’t have social media). but when i could JUST focus on being with her and not also try to scroll IG or respond to DM’s at the same time, it made our time together so much more fun and purposeful! when i was in church, i was IN CHURCH and not also scrolling my phone. when i was at a red light, instead of pulling my phone out to check IG, i would take 4 deep breaths or say a prayer. i was genuinely just way more PRESENT in whatever task i was doing.

five. perspective + gratitude

i could write an entire blog post about this point alone but i’ll try and give y’all the cliff note version. before this break i felt so burnt out and honestly, at times, like i wanted to quit social media entirely. but i listened to a podcast episode recently about burn out and she said “when you feel tired…take a break, don’t quit.” and that’s exactly what i needed.

during this 5 day break from social media, i was able to remember why i love my job so much. i made myself take time to write out the things i dislike about my job or what’s challenging for me, and then what i LOVE about my job. and there was SO much i love about this job and truly feel so grateful for. taking a break from the constant scrolling and reading people’s comments and DM’s and criticism or whatever it might be…allowed me to step back, zoom out, and remember ‘holy cow, i love my job and what i GET to do everyday.’

while i was taking a break from social media (and working) there were SO many things that popped up where i felt like ‘ah i can’t wait to share this with my followers!’, whether it was a new pair of nikes or a bible verse or a quote from a book. i MISSED you guys and absolutely love getting to share my everyday life with you and things that i hope truly encourage and inspire you on a deeper level.

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i really did learn so much from this 5 day social media break and definitely hope to incorporate this into my schedule going forward! at least once a year i think this is something that can be SO healthy + helpful for anyone and everyone to do! i came back feeling SO refreshed, refocused, thankful for my job and EXCITED to be back with you guys!

i’m so thankful i listened to that gut intuition telling me it was time for a break, because the life lessons, energy, and perspective i gained from it were everything!

thanks for reading!

xo Lauren

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