I should prepare a balanced meal for my skinny husband, the only one in the family who lost weight on my diet last winter, but instead I waste time at an online dieting forum.
Me: F—, f—, f—. I ate a cupcake at B&N and gained 5 pounds.
Diet Pal: That’s 480 calories. I ate twice that for breakfast.
Me: Did you lose weight?
DP: Lost one in Dec. and gained 5 back.
Me: I lost 5 pounds in London and regained them the minute the plane landed in the U.S.A.
DP: Good eating there?
Me: Maybe less additives in the croissants?
Obviously this is the “free” dieting forum. If we were paying, we would diet, not eat cupcakes.
It’s easy to waste time on social media.
I don’t have a Facebook page.
But I had a Twitter account for six months last year. I hopped from links in tweets to book reviews and even articles about non-bookish things that didn’t interest me. A literary magazine tweeted about several authors I’d never heard of, and I’ve still never heard of them.
Twitter can be addictive.
Seriously, it cut into my reading time.
Finally I deleted my account.
And I started to feel better.
I love being online, but am cutting back again on social media. I am turning off my comments at the blog, perhaps just for a few months. We’ll see.
I’ve just decided it’s hard to conduct a discussion in a format that isn’t a forum.
I’ve got my dieting forum.
And then there’s the Dancing with the Stars forum. It’s more fun than Dancing with the Stars.
The brief “highs” from likes at Facebook, or, in my case, positive comments at my blog, illumine the reward center of the brain and can lead to addiction to social media, according to study by Dar Meshi, a postdoctoral researcher at the Freie Universität in Berlin.
Is that why we’re spending so much time online?
According to Jonathan Salem Baskin in his article, “Social Media Are Junk Food for Our Brains. Why Are the Nutritionists Silent?” in Forbes last year, many people are going on a social media diet. He points out,
… much of today’s social media experiences amount to little more than tasty bags of mental potato chips. There’s a powerful and mostly-unquestioned lobby that tells us to have another one, and then another one, so institutions and brands happily up their chip production and then wonder why consumers aren’t happy with what they get.
I’ve got to get back to the garden, literally, and you can spend so much time leaving silly comments on the internet that you don’t have time to plant the flowers…
Or something like that…
Anyway, if you need to write to me, I am at: firstname.lastname@example.org