The first flush of deactivating my Twitter account was wonderful. As I wrote in the very first post in this series, it was a rush of freedom, of oxygen, of possibility.
The process of extracting oneself from social media appears to be following a common pattern. I noticed it when I left Facebook; and I’m seeing the same thing now that I’m absent from Twitter.
That pattern is:
- Visitations of guilt from others
- Questioning whether you’re actually doing the right thing; find ways to reinforce the New Way
- Discover your own version of the New Way
If you’re an addict, or you live with someone who is coming out of addiction, you might also recognise this pattern. This is the same pattern that I saw in my husband’s behaviour in the first two to three years of not drinking.
Paradoxically, I did share the first piece on this topic on Twitter, using my ‘Leticia Work’ account. Initially, I heard nothing: Quietude.
But now that I’m just barely 3 days in, I’ve started getting tweets and follows in response. Those who have started realising that I have a Work Account have ported themselves across to follow me there.
And then this morning I got this anguished tweet from one of my dearest and most wonderful friends, who, by the way, I met online more than ten years ago:
And you know what? I agreed that it’s ridiculous! What IS that?
You’ll notice this, though, that it’s a visitation of guilt. My own immediate response was also of guilt. It occurred in a rush of feelings about letting people down, abandoning them, wanting to supplicate them.
Usually, my immediate action would be to reactivate. It wasn’t today. Instead I replied, ‘temporarily!’ (which ultimately may prove deceitful, but right now I don’t know which way this is going to fall out). Regardless, right now I’m on a self-care jag, and the truth is that as much as I love these people, we are still connected in meaningful ways.
If I were to jump back in right now, then I’m giving into guilt, which is one of the seven faces of Mulengro. This is something that I’ve made a commitment not to perpetuate.
The second thing that happened was that I noticed the #LeticiaWrites hashtag.
As I write this – Wednesday – it’s a #LeticiaWrites day. What I realised is that I haven’t done the thinking about the elements of which my platform is comprised if Twitter isn’t part of it, how I might use them, and what this all means.
Therefore, one of the first things I’m doing today is working on the New Way. Once this is in place, I’ll be able to settle into the method, and can let it ride for the following few weeks as a test.
How you can follow me for the next little while instead of on Twitter…