Lately, I have taken notice of how distracted and pressured I have been feeling with so much social media in our world… the feeling like I have to keep up the ever growing fast pace to post pics on FB and Pinterest, ‘like’ my friends posts and pics, share a good word, add more followers on Instagram, Twitter, Linked-In,etc. This was re-inforced by the onslaught of notifications and articles that i was receiving in my emails , regarding the importance of social media and how if you don’t keep up with it, you won’t be as effective. At the same time, I began to actually take stock of how much time I was spending, or more accurately ‘wasting’, checking all of my social media accounts and news feeds and how/what I was actually feeling in my body, mind and spirit.
Over the last week I read a book that has rocked my world, called ‘Switch on Your Brain” by Caroline Leaf, Ph.D. The book is centered on the science of epigenetics and the undeniable scientific evidence of how damaging multi-tasking of any kind actually is to the brain, most especially with all of the electronic personal communication devices we depend on daily. We see our children (and ourselves) go from Facebook (declining use amongst teens because it’s not fast enough and ‘boring’) to Instagram…and now Snapchat and Vine. Our inability to focus and stay present with long term, deep intellectual thought and meditation of God’s Word is growing at an alarming rate and is confirmed by the increase of anxiety, depression and other health issues that are present in not only adults but children as well. Science continues to confirm the direct relationship between toxic thoughts and physical sickness.
If we don’t take control of our thoughts and of our time, the world and it’s growing frantic pace WILL. This is not an opinion – it is just a fact. If we are going to leave a legacy of real love, health and peace to our children and our grandchildren after we leave this earth, we need to stop and look at our choices and what those choices are producing. These choices include what we choose to put in our minds and how we spend our time, that in turn affect our thoughts, actions and entire being. The LORD gave us the clear mandate in Deut. 30:19 “This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live”
Choosing life is not as easy as it seems since death and chaos is the ‘default’ from sin – the wages of sin is death. Thankfully we have been redeemed by a loving God who gave His life in our place that sin and death would no longer reign in both our mortal and eternal beings. However, He still gives us the choice to choose life and to choose what that means on a daily basis. Do we take the time to actually think about what we are thinking and what we are choosing to put in our brains and our hearts? Do we actually own our time or does time get away from us and we look back with regret for wasting what we can’t get back? Are we a victim of our life’s circumstances or are we a victor over, and do we have the living proof of victory with tangible real fruit? Where we have anxiety or worry, anger or lack of control…are those gone? If not, then I would suggest we are not walking in victory yet.
For me, I have chosen to do the 21 day brain detox plan as outlined in Dr. Leaf’s book….the pressure to have to check FB 10 or more times a day is gone. I am learning to stop and listen, to choose my thoughts and priorities with my time…to know what God meant when the psalmist wrote, “Be still and know that I am God”, Psalm 46:10 I am beginning to notice a change inareas where I would normally be anxious or feeling like I had to take control, now I have more of His peace. I have not ‘arrived’ yet but I am definitely at a new level of choosing life and as such am feeling healthier, more productive with my time and stronger in my ability to choose. While I think social media has its place and can be used as an effective tool, I also see that it can also be very destructive and toxic to our individual and family destinies. It comes down to choice again and how we use it.
I encourage you to read the book and share your thoughts.:-)