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B068: How to take a social media sabbatical

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What is a social media sabbatical? Here’s the quick answer – it’s you taking a break from social media. And why would you do that? So you can take back control of your time and your business, in a more powerful way than before.

Here are a few signs that you might need a bit of a break from the mindless death scroll of social media:

You’re feeling some, or all of these things:

  • A bit crispy around the edges
  • Overwhelmed
  • Burned out
  • Or like you don’t have any time left to do the important stuff in life

Oh my goodness, this is one of my absolute favorite topics to chat about!! On the same topic, you might remember Bonus episode 054 where I teach you how to take a 48 hour digital detox.

That’s like the training wheels version of what I’m gearing up for with my social media sabbatical. If you did the mini digital detox, you can totally take a sabbatical for a full month.

Here’s how:

Create your boundaries

Are you saying no to all social media channels, or temporarily quitting a couple? You get to decide.

For me, I like to go all in… it keeps it simple. No social media for the entire month. And while I’m not deactivating any of my accounts, I’m deleting the apps from my phone and vowing to not visit these websites on my laptop. So… ‘bye Felicia’ to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, and YouTube!

During this month, if you see posts by The Simplifiers, you’ll know it’s someone else on the team, or created and scheduled before my break.

Identify your rewards

You are totally going to be shocked by how much time you’ll free up in your work day. I mean, absolutely SHOCKED. So, what are you going to fill your time with instead? Can you sprinkle in a few rewards that’ll nourish yourself? Here are a few ideas:

  • Meditate
  • Visit an art museum
  • Sign up for a workout class
  • Paint
  • Go for a swim

In addition, what higher yielding tasks are you going to tackle at work with this extra time? It could be focusing on sales or client relations. It could be mapping out your strategic plan for the next quarter, or pitching to speak at future events. Whatever it is, here’s your chance to try something different.

You might be surprised that your brain thinks much clearer without the distraction of social media. How will you feel if you stop comparing yourself with others? It’s time to find out and #Dothething!

Tell your peeps

I suggest that you let your inner circle of people know that you’re planning a social media sabbatical, just the same as with the shorter digital detox.

Also, if you’re in charge of your brand’s social media feed, consider putting a placeholder post on every channel. It might say something like this:

“Hey, I’m taking a social media sabbatical with The Simplifiers Podcast this month! Connect with my team and I through our website, we’d love to hear from you!”

You’re not closed for business. You’re simply not generating new content on social media. Tell your audience about it, and be open and honest. Take this time to have coffee with your very best clients, ask for referrals and build connections through real life moments.

It might just shift something big for you!

And just one final whisper, from me to you, dear friend… come in closer.

Do you want to know something crazy? I did this experiment last summer, removing myself from every social media channel except for Instagram. Why Instagram? I have no clue… but I felt like I needed a lifeline to the outside world and my overseas friends and clients. And the crazy part is this… there were tons of positive outcomes from doing it.

The benefits of my last social media detox

  • We exceeded our monthly revenue goal that month
  • We didn’t lose massive droves of followers on any of our social media accounts
  • I gained headspace that truly nourished me and my mental wellness. I even found myself sitting more on park benches in the sunshine, rather than hunched over my phone obsessively scrolling
  • The world didn’t come crumbling down around me

In fact, given the way the algorithms work these days, and the fact that only 1% of your following sees your posts, I’m not sure anyone really noticed I was away.

This month-long experiment is a tool to help you step off the hamster wheel. You’ll be able to take stock, and figure out if your social media activity is really driving business towards you (or not).

As a massive bonus, you’ll nourish yourself as a leader, and decide what you want to integrate back in to your work day once it’s done.

I certainly know that I felt calmer, happier and less stressed after completing this sabbatical the last time. I look forward to giving myself permission to unplug in July, so my creative juices can flow once again.

Give yourself this gift. It might be just what you need next.

You can do this, I believe in you.

It’s time to SIMPLIFY.

If this thought of the day inspired you…

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Big thanks to our undercover superheroes at The Simplifiers Podcast that help us create these episodes for you – Suzen Marie, our Podcast Editor. Jeffrey Lynn, our Video Editor. Janine Yardley, our Show Notes Editor. Lyden Yardley, our Director of Brilliance. Manminder Athwal, our Blogger. Our advisory board includes: Aubri Nowowiejski, Chris Justice and George Mills. And I’m your host, Mary Baird-Wilcock. Thank you so much for listening and telling your peeps about us.

As always friends, keep things simple.

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One Comment

  • Good to see you also benefit from taking a break Mary!

    In a similar boat, have switched off my social media accounts, deleted their apps from my phone throughout June (apart from Buffer where I can schedule what I want to say).

    Main thing I’ve learned is how much of my headspace I’ve spent keeping track with things which aren’t all that useful. Also it’s easy to be looking for affirmations – likes/RTs etc and feeling like people are responding in a useful way to what you share when it’s not necessarily all that meaningful a response. Something I’ve realised seeing as I’ve mainly used the platforms to share my photography and promote the services I offer to clients more recently.

    If you’ve not read it , Adam Alter has an excellent book on how addiction works and how platforms like social media are structured to encourage that response.

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