Amy Mantis


Full disclosure: This is a rant on my (bad) social media habits

It's a rant about my reappearing lack of discipline when it comes to wasting time on the Internet.

I have a rule that I try to follow: no unnecessary screen-time until I do the following (order changes depending on the time):

  • Meditate. I use Headspace which requires the phone.
  • Mobilize. This includes a Yoga TuneUp practice, some Kelly Starrett Mobility/Supple Leopard work, and some Controlled Articular Rotations, as coined by Dr. Andreo Spina.
  • Eating breakfast.  I love breakfast and I'm a better human when I'm fueled well.
  • Yoga on Mondays and Fridays.
  • 30 minutes of guitar practice.
  • And, if I'm being really good, 30 minutes of book-reading.

On weekends, I let that slide.  But I always regret it.  I can't think of one day where I've said, "I'm glad I checked Instagram while still in bed!"  Never happens.

Another rule I try to follow is limiting my email-checking AND not checking it before I do my routine.  In my ideal world I don't check my email until 12PM, then once again before I leave for lessons (last minute changes), and once when I get home.  I've been known to remove email from my phone, and only check it when I know something is up in the air (my last band used email to confirm rehearsals, and we were known for canceling rehearsals last-minute).

I have another rule that I think I can bend and survive but that has yet to happen.  And that is Facebook.  Some people can handle having access to it at all times.  I am NOT one of those people.  I find that if I go on Facebook, especially on a day like today where I am virtually 100% in control of my time, I can spend hours on it just scrolling.  And the whole time, I'm not happy!  I think, "I could be doing so many other things," But I'm still on Facebook.

I have been known to go on Facebook cleanses for a month several times a year.  And I always feel awesome when doing those.  Instagram is less of a problem, but I'm still unhappy with how I keep checking it on a near-constant basis sometimes.  But there's something about Facebook that just does me IN.  And I KNOW IT!  But yet, unless I'm being hard and fast with my rule, I find myself there.

I tried a Fridays-only thing.  And that worked for a hot minute.  And I think it can work again.  I also think I need to start putting my RescueTime to its intended use: save us all from Facebook.

I like being able to talk to my friends and find out what shows are happening and who wants to jam, but I have a phone.  I can call people, and I can use other sources for shows.  And I know I should do that.  But will I?  Like right now, I'm thinking, "I wonder what Kenny is up to."  I have two options: check on him via social media, or contact him directly because I have his phone number.  And what was my first instinct?  Social media.  UGH.

I don't know exactly what I'm going to do about it, but I do know that I will do something about it because something has to be done.  I'm a better human the less time I spend on social media.  I may not talk to you as much, but when we do talk, I assure you it will be better.

Now I know that all of this is my fault, and as an artist/a musician who's trying to build a public life, I do have to use it.  Sparingly.  Just enough to keep my hoards of fans in the loop because I want them to be in the loop, but I don't want to spiral out of control.

[End rant.]