Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Countering Social Media Fatigue (SoMeFat)

In these days of Social Media, many of us live increasingly in the public eye.

What I write here can be viewed by anyone. What I say on Twitter can be viewed by anyone. What I update on my Facebook status can be viewed by lots of people (not anyone – I have designated my FB friends and set my privacy settings, but 300 people isn’t really a private place, is it? And I don’t bother with the selective status updates, although I could.)

I love Social Media. I’ve connected and learned more through these tools than I ever dreamed of…

But…it has its drawbacks.

If you’re big into Social Media you may have started feeling Social Media Fatigue (it’s a new syndrome I’ve invented, shortname: SoMeFat).

In December, I fell victim to SoMeFat. I wrote once in my blog – an all time low. I fell WAY back on Twitter.

Why? Work obligations, Christmas, who knows what else. I was just tired of it all. Social Media Fatigue set in. Occasionally -- mostly out of guilt (?!) -- I would attempt to stretch my Twitter legs. But they were mostly lame attempts.

Do you ever get SoMeFat? Aside from switching all devices to OFF, how do you respond to SoMeFat?


Photocredit: Eye by helgabj on Flickr


Ralph Langevin said...

That's a great question Cammy! I wish I had some brilliant thought for you, but unfortunately my typical solution is to just walk away from everything and take a breather. I also have an advantage in that it's our course leaders who write our blog posts...one less thing for me to worry about! I hope you receive a few good tips on helping with SoMeFat...it's a syndrome that affects many people!!

Don Bolen said...

It is OK to take a break from whatever. Remember, the devices and the tools work for you.

Kevin said...

SoMeFat is the result of SoMe addiction. Not sure if I'm addicted...okay, I am. It's like when I was 20-something kid and was so worried I was missing something if I didn't go out on a Friday or Saturday night. After awhile it gets to you and wears you down, and you need a weekend "away."

I'll admit it's hard to walk away when I sit in front of a computer all day, plus an iPhone in my pocket every waking minute.

My solution has proven successful twice last year when I left town on vacation. It was a chance to physically get away from the computer AND turn everything off. It was by far the BEST way to combat SoMeFat. When I returned, I felt better about getting back in the 'stream' of things.

Good luck Cammy!

Sahana Chattopadhyay said...

I so understand what you mean. I am trying to keep away from Internet, laptop and even iPod on Sundays. Thankfully, Kindle helps me beat my SoMe addiction. I am also trying to time-box my Internet time--30 min slots twice a day...something I have learned from my recent Agile induction.

It's helping somewhat.I read more books in the last 3 months than I had in the previous 12...

Anonymous said...


SoMeFat is a nice term but surely just another way of saying BurnOut.

The pace of SoMe and the feeling of need that people have to be involved is just the same as any other Obsessive Compulsive Dissorder.

I have over the last months cut back dramatically on what I post, who I answer, how much time I give to anything SoMe. I have had to force myself back to old fashioned social events. Real conversation, meeting people, running 'live' courses rather than do everything from behind a screen. The balance is as important as the work life balance I mentioned in my blog ( http://lasher.co.uk ) some time ago.

It would appear many people will suffer from SoMeFat and therefore awareness to the condition is important before getting involved. So thank you for your post. It may save someone.

Neil Lasher

Cammy Bean said...

Yes, awareness is the first step in recovery.

Having taken a nice mental break there from SoMe -- in the public eye sense of it all, because I did still engage, albeit in a private manner with friends and colleagues through Social Media tools -- I do feel rejuvenated!

Cammy Bean said...

@Sahana -- I've been reading a lot more books as well, although fiction -- mystery thrillers and stuff like that. Need to rejuvenate with non-learning learning!

Anonymous said...

I did suffer from SoMeFat among a few other things a couple of months back.
What I did: Quit the city and all communication devices for 4 days, went on a road trip (partly by bus and partly by foot).
Back in action now. :-)

office philippines said...

Sometimes you can get carried away by social media activities but all you have to do is be away from the computer to recover.

Judy Unrein said...

Sometimes I just need to dial it down, too, so I only catch up on Facebook updates from my "inner circle" list. I'm sure I could do this for Twitter too, using groups, but honestly I rarely check in to Twitter... there's just too much going on there for me to handle most days!