It’s good to be back.
I’ve been off of social media for a month. I removed it from my phone and from my life for 30 days. There was no posting about daily events. No updates on the lives of others.
Sometimes my husband would say something like, “Hey babe, isn’t it awesome that so-and-so did this or that,” and I’d stare blankly.
“Oh yeah, you are on a break,” he’d respond.
And somehow it felt like I was missing something, at least at first. Yet as the days passed, the desire to be so connected diminished. My thoughts calmed. I was able to read an entire chapter of a book without the need to “check in.”
In those 30 days, I was still busy. I was still me.
I hosted a retreat for 70 women. I traveled to Kenya with my sister. I prayed over a new book idea and began to research. I worked hard on a beautiful, exciting new ministry project with two friends. I started cycling in the mornings. I began to take pictures with no other reason than to enjoy the moment.
Being off social media for 30 days allowed me to tune in completely to each of those — and more importantly the people involved.
Today, I’m back and I’m excited to reconnect with you and in this ministry, but I want to hold on to what I gained in this break.
On my Facebook page today, I’m sharing a 3-day mini-series to help us set boundaries with emotionally unhealthy people, even those we love a lot. But what if we are the ones who are unhealthy in an area of our life? Are we wise enough to to set boundaries for ourselves? Do we respect and care enough about our own wellbeing to be honest about the toll it takes when we don’t?
A healthy boundary is formed when we:
- Are honest about what is not working
- Examine the part that we play in the unhealthy aspect
- Share our need with others and with God, and most of all to acknowledge that need with ourself
- Step into the new (and stay there) until it feels like home
What do these boundaries look like for me?
Social media remains off my phone. It’s not going to yank me like a dog on a chain every time there’s a notification. I still love connection. It’s a valuable tool in ministry. I’ll continue to celebrate birthdays and life events with people I love. But it will receive a specific amount of time each day and that is all it gets of me.
Setting boundaries has always been something I believed in, but now I realize that a boundary can be a gift I give to myself.
For I am worth it and so are you.
Please join me on my Facebook page to join in the 3 day mini-series.
- what a healthy boundary is, and what it’s not
- why we need them
- how to follow through when setting boundaries are met with resistance
Q: Is there an area where you sense God asking you to set a personal boundary? What is it?
You don’t need to share the answer here, but write it down. Show it to God (he already knows). Last, let us know if you need prayer. We’ll wrap around you as you run toward all that God has for you.
I’m so proud of you for taking this break! I love your transparency, leadership and encouragement! I’ve felt the need to drop social media as well. As a gal who lives way off the beaten path, with no family around, it’s been a lifeline sometimes! I think life before was more productive, though. And poor health finds me using social media for mindless entertainment. I love my OBS, and my phone has the better WiFi connection. I need to discipline myself and find a way to do OBS without over indulging the rest. Perhaps, do the study, and then turn it off during the hiatus. This is a dilemma when grandchildren and good friends are so very far away and no one uses snail mail, or the phone anymore! Praying, because I need a shift.
I love this Suzie! I recently moved my two most visited social media sites to the very last page of shortcuts on my phone as well as set a 15 minute limit (yes I have hit the “ignore” button a few times but it makes me more aware!). It’s been very apparent how much I used to just go to those because I could seem them so easily and I’ve really come to appreciate the time I have found by not doing so. I’m going to pray about taking a full break too as I loved reading about yours! I don’t want to miss out on the life God has given me by being focused on the one that someone else is sharing. xoxo
I love your heart of obedience. I am feeling convicted to make a change. I was talking to God about this very issue yesterday. I need boundaries to break the habit and also to not waste the time He has given me, especially in this season. You encourage me to do it. It seems similar to my fight with exercise. I was feeling convicted I needed to exercise and to take care of myself that way. I hated exercise and I avoided it like the plague but God continued to convict me. I am still working on consistency but I feel
better physically and I feel better about myself. The conviction feels the same here. I need to make certain times where I go on it and not have it on my fingertips all the time. The same resistance I had about the exercise I have with this. Thanks for your transparency, Suzie.
This comes at a perfect time! I am having a hard season with sandpaper people and my career coach says I need to set boundaries. I am learning how and want to keep learning because these emotionally unhealthy people are draining me. And yes, I need prayer. One of my colleagues – very emotional unbalanced. Lies, manipulative, makes stories amd events up, thigs disappear from our data and spreadsheets but its not her when I have proof that it is. I am trying to be the peacemaker but it is so hard! I pray every day for me, my other colleagues and plead the blood of Jesus over us.
Heavenly Father, I pray that Areum be given wisdom and discernment in her interactions with this difficult co-worker. Open the eyes of management to see the truth in all the discord. Lord, I pray specially for this coworker, behavior like this goes much deeper than just being a trouble maker, she has a deep heart issue that only you can heal. Help Areum set healthy boundries and if you choose to open doors for her to minister to this coworker give her your strength, courage and words to guide her. Let her be the light that reflects you to all her coworkers. Thank you, Lord, for Areum and all you are doing in her life. In Jesus name Amen
Amen! What a refreshing post. Social media can be so warmly connecting, but also a sneaky rabbit hole down which time and connection with reality can be lost. Balance & boundaries with social media is something we all should constantly strive for. XO
This post came at a good time for me. I just made a commitment to God to set a boundary on my reading habits, not so much on what I was reading but the amount of time I was spending pleasure reading. I have long felt him calling me to do certain things in ministry (actually writing Christian novels is one of those things), but I felt convicted that I was spending the time I could devote to pursuing that calling to reading. So, much as you did with social media, I am taking a complete hiatus from pleasure reading for a while so I can get a better handle on what God wants me to do with my time. I know there is nothing wrong with having some downtime and reading for pleasure as long as it is something worthy, but like social media, it can become addictive. Please pray for me.
Great message. Needed messaged too.
Please pray for me as I seek God’s wisdom about the boundaries He wants me to make and keep. Because some of them may not be easy to fulfill.
By His power anything is possible.
A couple years ago I reconfigured my settings so I would not receive notifications for almost everything but especially Facebook. It has saved me so much time I used to spend getting sucked into the “rabbit hole” as another commenter put it. I do miss stuff sometimes but I figure if it’s truly that important, someone will call me or text! It’s also not just about how we use our time but also our emotional well-being. There have now been many studies come out showing that social media use makes us feel more depressed. And I will echo the sentiments of other commenters, thanks for your transparency Suzie. It truly is refreshing how very “real” you are in your writing. God bless!