Wednesday, January 31, 2018

I Challenge Me

It's the last day of the first month of this new year.


How time flies. (my most favorite line)


You see, when we approached the end of the year, entering the new year, there's this common activity "New Year, New Me"going on. Time for all those resolutions and all, that we usually forgot after few weeks. I, just like the crowd, worked on my 2018 resolutions. Now since it's suddenly end of month one already, I figured, why not I review on those? See if I actually made any progress. Hence, this blog post.

I will focus on two things that I have never done in the past and have challenged myself heavily in January.

1. Limit my time on social media.
Actually the reason I can write this blog post is because I reach home earlier today. Usually when I reach home early, I will just lay on my bed and scroll thru Instagram or Facebook till it's suddenly time to sleep.

This year, I decided to limit my time on social media (instagram & facebook, but I will focus more on instagram). I wanted to say I 'left' them already -although I sort of did- but I still opened them a few times in January, only to check if there are direct messages. However, I managed to NOT: scroll thru the feed, check out the explore, view every instastory, and stalk everyone.

Why did I do this?
Honestly and being very vulnerablely, often Instagram makes me feel the 'uncomfortable'. How could she be so pretty? so skinny? so flawless? so lucky? How could they always travel? Why are they so successful? That is a very nice bag, but damn why it has to be so expensive? How could these people afford it? The big family is so loving, what a family goal. How do they achieve that? The groups are so fun, they all do all sort of thing together. Why am I not in the group?

It left me with a lot of questions that lead to the big question: why can't my life be like that?

The truth is, I know everything is crafted.

I only post pictures where I look pretty.
Most of my post revolves around my trips.
My big family has regular meet ups and events.
I have too many groups of friends, I can't be in all events.

I actually kinda have that life I was looking at Instagram, only that, I don't always have the perfect Instagram pictures of all that. But why even knowing all these, I still feel miserable?

So when I was talking to one of my closest friend, Nia, she told me that she stops opening Instagram, and I was like, that's actually a good idea. Let me see if I can survive without it.

Surprise not surprise, I passed this month.

I rarely opened Instagram, except for, like I mentioned, a few times checking direct messages. I let some people know that I am on social media detox, so they will know that I will not know where they went on the weekend, or what they eat, or whatever is going on, and to not send me direct messages.

The result of this?

1. I do not know what is going on in people's lives. So when people talk about it, I have no idea. I told Nia about this, I was thinking, it's not good that I have no idea what is going on. Her response? "That's actually a good thing. We talk less about other people now."

2. I talk less about other people now.

3. I stop comparing. Then again, I don't know about other people lives so I have nothing to compare to. Left me to just feel grateful for whatever good things happen in my life, coz it does not have to be better than the others.

4. It feels as if I have extra time. There are times when I do not know what to do. I look at my phone and think "what should I do?" I end up reading more quora, play peak (it's a brain games), read more books, learn language in dualingo lol. I can even write this blog post! I think I use my brain more now lol.

5. I reply chats. lol. I used to have this habit of not replying chats... or reply it like a day after. Most of the time, instead of replying message, I open instagram. Now since I don't open instagram, I just chat with people and directly ask what's going on in their lives. By doing so, I kinda strengthen my relationships with those people I really care, and those people who really care about me (that bothers to chat me coz they can't find my life on instagram)

6. I am more present. I don't spend time being with others with mind wandering on other people's lives on Instagram. Let's admit it everyone, we do open instagram when we are with other people. Why? Why are we physically present with people but not caring about them and instead spend our time with them checking on other people lives again?

7. I don't feel the need to share whatever I am doing. Instagram is like a competition, who has the most hype life. Once you start sharing, you should keep on sharing because when you don't, people will think you are doing nothing, or you have a boring life not worth sharing. Once I stop sharing, I just free myself from that constant need to keep up in the competition.

8. I realize.. a lot of things do not matter. Seriously, why do we care so much about what other people eat, or where they go for holiday, or what new bag they use, or whatever it is they present. Not knowing this for a month, does not really affect my life, so really, those things do not matter at all. I bet nothing affects my followers lives as well for not knowing what I am up to for a month.

Overall, I feel good. I told my friend about this and he asked, so will I continue or the experiment stops here?

I am not sure. I don't think of this as an experiment yet I don't want to strictly say I quit Instagram. Probably like the title, I will just continue limitting my time on it.

2. No Shopping Year!
Ha! Anyone who knows me know how much I love to shop! There were always online shopping packages come to my office desk. Often when I look at my room, I feel like having too many stuffs but I still buy more stuffs. Until one day, I read a post in Quora about someone tried a "No Shopping Year". Upon reading that, I thought to myself, can I do this? Can I de-attach myself with these material stuffs? Can I control myself to not shop?

Challenge accepted!

But a year seems so long, so let's break it down a little. Half a year? Quarterly? How about monthly? Ok let's start with weekly.

I sort out the rules.. no more new bags, no more new shoes, no more new clothes, no more buying all those non-senses..

What I can buy limited to food, gifts, toiletries, and things that I really need.

I told my bf, several close friends, SO they will remind me, and SO I will stick to it coz I am too ashamed if have already been telling everyone but fail at it.

Guess what!! Today is the last day of the month and I sort of did it!!! Well, I cheated a bit lol.
I saw a Miiko agenda in the bookstore and thought it was cute, and I told my bf and he bought it for me haha.
I needed a new iphone case and because my cousin is selling iphone cases, I asked one from her.
My mom made new dress for me for Chinese New Year.

But other than that, I did not buy anything. I am proud of myself for passing this for a month!! This could be a result of point 1 as well. Not knowing results in not wanting. I did not open instagram so I did not see all the online shops as well.. so I did not want anything and so I did not buy anything. Knowing I don't wanna buy anything and can't buy anything, I did not go to shops as well. Again, not seeing = not wanting.

That is really the key to succeed in this. It was easy as I don't know what to buy so I don't buy.
But when I know there are thing to buy, I feel like buying them.

Like just now, I went to Stradivarius to find gifts for business partners who is leaving the job, then I saw many cute bags, and cute blazers and cute dresses. IT WAS SO TEMPTING. I WAS SO TEMPTED. I have been working so hard, can't I just treat myself to a new bag???

Rest assured, I managed to control myself just now and walked out the shop with only the gifts and nothing for myself. Phew! Although until now that small cute bag is still on my mind. But what do I need that bag for? I asked myself again. Can I live without that bag? Obviously! My life was fine before I saw that bag. It will still be fine although I do not have that bag.

Again, not knowing whatever people are doing does not matter, same goes with not having the cutest bag or not having the newest shoes. It really does not matter at all. It's simple but it's not easy at all.

There are still 11 more months. I might fail but I will try to do my best. We'll see.