By Katrina Liu

For anyone who is new to my blog series, welcome. And for those of you who enjoyed or just skimmed my blogs from last year, welcome back. This is a blog series continued from the Spring and it’s basically a weekly installment of blurbs and my past-midnight thoughts.

We’ve all been hearing — and experiencing — how the pandemic has changed the world in 2020, and we’ve all learned things about ourselves throughout the past months since many of us couldn’t do anything else. I want to spend my first blog of this semester highlighting something that I’ve learned and have been recently preaching to any and everyone who will listen. 

It is so important to take a break. What I mean by that is knowing your limits mentally and emotionally, and being able to know when enough is enough.

Since the tragic killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and countless others, social media has been blowing up with resources, debates and conversations. All of those posts are immensely important and it’s an essential time to reevaluate our own actions and values. However, there came a point where all the constant refreshing on social media became too overwhelming and I did something I never thought I would be able to do: delete Instagram. 

And I’ll tell you right now, I highly recommend it. 

Because while Instagram is a gold-mine of information, it can also be a tunnel of incessant noise. For about two weeks I turned toward Twitter and news outlets such as The Boston Globe, TIME Magazine, The New York Times and The Washington Post to keep myself in the loop. It was refreshing and gave me the space to take a deep breath and step back from social media. 

I’ll eventually download Instagram again after I feel I can handle it again and that it’s beneficial rather than detrimental. But now, it’s easier to delete it any time that I need to just take a step back.

This isn’t anything against Instagram, Twitter or any social media platform. Humans are naturally social and these apps are a great way to stay connected. But your individual well-being comes first and foremost, so if you find yourself getting unhappy or frustrated when you open the app, it may be time to take a break. 

Anyone who is important in your life will know other mediums to reach you if they need to and trust me, you are not missing that much. 

My point is that when you know you should take a break, do it. Don’t make excuses about the fact that you’re addicted or that you just simply can’t, because you can. I used to make those excuses, too. But I promise you, it’s incredibly refreshing.