This year, as part of the reflective self-denial of Lent, I gave up social media (I'm hardly unique), which for me came down to Facebook and Twitter.¹ Some people said I was crazy before I started, but I felt like I could take the time and put it to better use. I deleted the apps from my iPhone and iPad so that I wouldn't be tempted or open one by habit, and just resisted the urge to visit the sites when I was on a computer.
So how did the break go?
Overall, I guess my professional life wasn't fundamentally changed by the experience, but let's talk about the negatives first. I felt fairly disconnected from my professional learning. Although I kept up with my regular blogs through Feedly, it was clear that a big part of my personal learning network was the back-and-forth conversations and interaction with my online friends and colleagues. When I read about library stories like this or this, I had comments I wanted to make and nowhere to post them. Also, I missed out on the random discovery that comes from people linking to oddball stories outside the library bubble.
Positives? Well, I got a lot of work done on various projects: a work partnership with Buffy Hamilton, a new website for the show that's almost ready to go, recorded a few interviews for upcoming episodes, and fine-tuned a new secret project that I think listeners of the show will be excited about. I took a supervision webinar from PLA that has energized my thinking on things and changed the way I viewed some issues related to my management style. I also played a lot of Candy Crush, Threes, and Words with Friends (oh, wait, I'm sorry, that belongs in the negatives category).
Thanks to everyone who follows and supports the show. Without you, it's just me throwing conversations into the wind.
Let's keep circulating the ideas together.
¹ I made two exceptions: 1) I would continue to update the Facebook and Twitter accounts for the podcast, because I need to keep the publicity machine running, though I would do as much as I could through scheduled posts on Hootsuite so I wouldn't have to log on to the sites. 2) I would log on to Facebook on Sundays just to clear out the Notifications queue, but not post, read, or respond to anything (technically, Sundays are not part of the 40 days of Lent).