Decision-Paralysis-Motivated Withdrawal from Social Media

I have started thinking about withdrawing somewhat from social media for a bit. Not from blogging, necessarily, but from Facebook and Twitter, at least. I have been in the process of moving into my new place, recently, and there have been a lot of decisions to make about arranging things and buying things I need and selling things so that I have money to buy those things.

I’ve been dealing with a lot of stress and decision fatigue, and I have realized recently that social media seems to exacerbate the problem. Reading through Facebook and Twitter is a many-decisions-per-minute operation. Liking things, not liking things, sharing things, not sharing things, commenting on things, not commenting on things.

These types of decisions can, at times, be particularly taxing for me because of their arbitrariness. I am not at all good at making arbitrary decisions. In some ways I’m a lot better at making big life decisions for which the reasons are equally big than small, meaningless decisions for which there are no particular reasons to choose one thing over another. Arbitrariness paralyzes me. I may have another post coming about the idea that this may be a big part of the reason why I get social anxiety–the arbitrariness of the decision-making that being social requires.

Social media decisions are, in a way, the worst of all possible worlds, because not only are they essentially arbitrary decisions–a lot of them are decisions about sharing or not sharing things that are going on in the world that I think are really important. Not only do I have no hard and fast means by which to make the decisions, but I feel morally compelled to make absolutely sure that some of the decisions that I make are the right ones.

Long story short, I think it’s important for me, right now, to try to do some minimizing of the number of decisions I need to make any given day, and I think social media may be the source of the vast, overwhelming majority of those decisions.

By ResearchToBeDone Posted in other

2 comments on “Decision-Paralysis-Motivated Withdrawal from Social Media

  1. I tried to comment by email and I can’t tell if it worked or disappeared into the ether. So this may be a duplicate.

    I wonder if you are trying to make all those decisions rationally with your brain, and if that’s part of the problem. They seem arbitrary because the ripple effects are too big to see consciously. I think the body/gut/neural automated unconscious system is better at making those calls. Where I’ve run into trouble in the past is ignoring or trying to figure out rationally those gut impulses, which is exhausting and confusing and possibly pointless. Trying to do everything consciously ignores a huge and powerful processor that is much better at deciding than the conscious thinky brain is. Some food for thought. 😉

    • Weird. It needed me to approve. Are you commenting from a new account/name vs before? Either way, should approve automatically in the future.

      I think there’s a very good chance that that’s part of it, but going conscious is a pretty reflexive thing for me. Not sure how to change that.

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