When Life Is Not Virtual

Avatar Human | Translator | Writer | Climate Activist | World Peace Advocate | World Citizen
Imen Al-Nighaoui
Member since January 8, 2013
  • 63 Posts
  • Age 28

Credit to the owner. Taken from the internet

Credit to the owner. Taken from the internet

Who are we outside of our Facebook profiles and Twitter accounts? How do our lives look when we are not sharing our daily life routine through Instagram? What kind of life are we leading when we are not surfing the internet? Or let me ask this question: Do you know how the world looks like outside the four walls of your social media accounts?

It has been a long time since I shared a new blog with you my friends, and the simple reason is that I was going through a life changing experiment, through which, I decided to stop using any social media. For more than three months, I stayed away from Facebook and Twitter, and I kept my Instagram use to a minimum. And, all I did was reading more books, listing to my own thoughts and reflecting on my own decisions.

I had the chance to live a life outside the box of my computer and the walls of my social media accounts. I had more time with myself and, I discovered that my ultimate enemy was “Me”. Thus, I tried to banish all the negative thoughts from inside me and, for the very first time I was able to share with others without fear all of my darkest thoughts and concerns. I, also, discovered that I hate chatting virtually. Therefore, I stopped doing that and, I even stopped making phone calls because they are useless.

Now, I prefer face-to-face conversations, the kind of a talk that requires real time feelings and limitless human interactions. For that reason, I told my two best friends that from this moment on, I am going to stop chatting with them through social media and that I truly prefer meeting them in our real world, where we can touch and feel. I told them that I hated our clipped and monotonic conversations through these virtual apps. And, I was happy to learn that they shared the same feelings.

I even moved with my sister to another city for change. I left home and all its perks. No more free internet connection and Wi-Fi. In the house, where my sister and I live, there is no internet. And, all I have is my computer, my books and my creative mind. I was able to write around elven pages of my ongoing novel and I was inspired to write short literary writings. I even planned future short stories and blogging ideas.

I was able to be alone with myself and to think about what kind of a life I want to have. I went out of myself so often to observe people around me and to listen to them talking. To see them move and think within a monumental historic framework. I watched them ranting about the climatic change and the high prices of food. And, I watched them interact with every change they are witnessing in the country. I saw human beings, not profiles. I saw happiness, sadness, braveness, fear, empathy and understanding, instead of hearts, likes or followers. I was able, through this experiment, to hear ideas and thoughts, and to touch real lives and not flat pictures and pinned life events.

I am still a twenty-seven year old unemployed woman. But, I am not afraid to say it. Because, when I stopped comparing myself with others, I saw my real self and I embraced my true worth. When I stopped watching people’s life through their social media profiles, I was able to know who I really am. Inside the real world, where the sun is warm and the ocean is a reflection of a smoked blue sky, I am a talented writer, nature lover, freethinker and a brilliant human being. And, I am not ashamed to say all those things about myself because I happen to be in love with the human being I have become.

Maybe, I am jobless now, but who knows what the future is hiding for me? Or maybe, I am not looking the right way, maybe the right job for me is yet to be discovered. Until then, I am going to do my best to absorb my own reality and to adapt to what is out there for me. I am not afraid of the future anymore, because I decided to be a successful writer and an activist leading by example.

In the real world I had time to understand the worth of a clean breeze and a free world, and to understand the importance of appreciating human lives and to respect their fears, pain and hurt, regardless of anything. Because everyone’s pain is worth our attention, in the real world there is no small and big pain. Pain is pain no matter how we see it. I also learned to listen more and to open my mind and hear those who want to share.

Human beings do not change - however, they develop through time and place. For that, change means losing oneself to the void. I therefore decided to develop myself through using social media only when it is truly needed and I decided to avoid virtual life. I made a decision, to keep in touch with my friends who live outside the borders of my country, through minimum weekly chatting, in order to check on them and to share with them what I have done so far with my life. I also decided to only use useful platforms that are meant to make a change in the world.

I started to understand who I am outside the virtual walls of social media and I started to appreciate life and myself when I stopped being trapped within people’s virtual likes and followings. And most importantly, I am happier now.

How about you my dear friends?

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