Simply Disconnect // Week 4

Well friends, we did it! Four entire weeks of intentional social media use. I can't decide if it was the quickest or longest month of my life, but one thing is certain- I learned A LOT through this challenge and I hope you all have some stories to send my way.

In case you missed it, here are the week

one

,

two

and

three

recaps in which I talk about some failures and some exciting successes.

As I'm bringing this challenge to a close, I want to share what I'm taking away from the whole experience and I hope you'll share the same with me. I was so encouraged by each and every one of you who joined me and I hope you enjoyed/grew from the experience. I connected with some awesome bloggers these past four weeks, built relationships, lived in the moment and failed a lot- things I think I value more now than ever.

Here are a few things I learned:

1 // It's ok to be bored. I talked about this in the first week recap, but one of the first things I realized after limiting myself in pulling out my phone was that I was bored a lot more often. But that is ok. Our minds are constantly stimulated by our incessant phone use and putting it away for even a few hours left me feeling like I needed to be "doing" something. But by the end of the challenge I learned to embrace those moments of "boredom," realizing that even just sitting doing nothing can be beneficial sometime.

2 // Social media is an amazing tool. We all already knew this, but for me, it was important for me to push myself to use it more intentionally instead of as something I check and scroll through for hours each day. I researched other bloggers in my niche, found some exciting

online communities

and even found a meet up in my area (which is super rare) next month that I'm SO excited about.

3 // Disconnecting doesn't have to be dramatic. Meaning that it doesn't have to take a "30 day challenge" or media fast for us to be intentional. Sometimes that is the boost we need to get started though- as it was in my case. I think it is more of a lifestyle change, a reworking of old habits slowly morphing into new, healthier ones. I'm trying to make small choices in my normal everyday life that help me move towards this goal.

4 // We shouldn't use it as a replacement. This one may seem totally obvious and lame that I even struggled with this. But I did. By the end of the challenge it was really obvious to me that I often use the online communities I'm part of and the "connectedness" I feel there as an excuse not to get out and meet people "in real life". This phase of life has been difficult for me as I don't have many people with the same interests or who I truly connect with for the first time in my life. Making friends in this phase is hard, but I'm determined to make it happen. This was a lesson that I didn't expect to learn this month, but I definitely needed to.

So, at the end of the month, with all my failures and habits glaring me right in the face, I'm beginning the new journey of implementing this into my day to day. A 30 day lesson doesn't mean anything if we don't take it beyond that period. I hope you all join me in applying whatever lessons you learned, small of big. And please please share them with me in the comments or via our hashtag!

Here are some awesome posts from other bloggers who took the challenge with me- they have some awesome insight:

-Gema from

Beloved Gems

talks about how it took going to Mexico for her to learn the value of setting aside specific time to use her phone.

-

Adriana

on how she felt like she failed.

-

Emilie

on her Facebook Hiatus

(If you posted on this challenge or a similar topic, send me the link and I'll add it!)