What if I told you that constant and heavy perusal of social media was a distraction to your self-protection tools? Not the situational and environmental awareness ones we all hear about, but ones that decay gradually over time that subtly deteriorate your innate ability to keep yourself safe?

1. It causes tracking problems….peripheral vision and the ability to split attention on multiple elements that may or may not be important. (And I’m not even talking about the criminal elements or risk-assessment – the general ability to assess and orient on potential dangers and safety hazards, even while not looking at it) Generally, it dulls the senses on multiple levels.

2. It decreases actual communication ability (or capability) or focus on other people you interact with daily, even if the cellphone isn’t in your hand. (causing strain on interpersonal relationships of value or annoying/irritating those you interact with that aren’t)

3. Neurologically, it’s constantly “on your mind”, pervasive in your daily ability to interact in the real world – a very real addiction and how clear do you think a crack-addict is when being cohesive to their actual environment and functionality within it…

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4. It acts as a depressant, having a countering effect to that of exercise, nature, movement, and self-reflection. (increases feelings of loneliness, isolation, and co-dependence)

5. It lowers motivation and vitality. I know, personally, when I’m engrossed online my energy hits slug-like proportions and I have zero proactivity, drive, or life intensity.

6. It increases anxiety, stress, and nervousness, which have a negative effect on your physiological, mental, psychological, and emotional well-being. So, as much as many online keyboard self-defense instructors tell you daily and perpetually that training with them is a necessity, sometimes getting off of social media for a time (or limiting one’s presence) exponentially increases one’s self-care, health, daily “safe” capability, and positive outlook on life. These things, in turn, lower triggers, paranoia, anxiety, and irrational thought processes (negative mind-talk)….long before the online self-defense classes are needed, possibly even making them moot. Just something to think about…could you stay off of social media for a full week, if asked?

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