Do you feel like you spend too much time and energy on social media? You are not alone. In a day and age where everything is digital, it is easy to get caught scrolling through social media for hours on end.
Social media is a creative and interactive platform for content creators and viewers, but it is becoming increasingly toxic. How often do you catch your comparing and self-deprecating thoughts?
Nowadays, youngsters can’t go an hour without checking at least one social media platform. People would rather scroll away their time than form real connections to those around them. Let’s look into how you can break this habit and become active members of society again.
What Does a Social Media Break Mean?
A social media break or detox means limiting your social media usage or totally shutting it down for some time. You can choose to stay off the internet for a day, a couple of weeks, or even a month.
You could also choose to take a break from certain sites or platforms instead of shutting out social media completely. Try taking a break for a few hours and slowly increase that time to a week and month. You can define your goals for this break and plan accordingly.
Reasons to Take a Break From Social Media
There are multiple ways in which social media is negatively impacting your well-being. First, consider this, how often do you make a choice that isn’t influenced by social media trends? Chances are, rarely. To regain control over your life and become independent from the excessive social pressure, you need a social media detox now and then.
You might also notice that you constantly compare your looks and lifestyle with the people you see on your social media. People only showcase the happy or fun side of their life on their socials, so it is easy to fall into depressive thoughts and unrealistic expectations for yourself.
Another thing to consider is your social connections. So many people nowadays are addicted to social media that they fail to connect with their friends and family. While some say that social media has enabled social connections, the reality is that it is pulling you into a virtual world with little tangible socialization.
These are just some reasons why it has become necessary to take a break from social media.
Signs You Need a Break From Social Media
Take a step back and evaluate your behavior. Some overlooked signs will become more visible to you after some introspection. Some signs you need to look for are listed below:
- You check your socials as soon as you wake up or when going to bed.
- You constantly find yourself checking your phone.
- You often compare your lifestyle to the ones you see on social media.
- You find yourself feeling inadequate, frustrated, or downhearted after scrolling through social media.
- You realize you have been scrolling for hours on end.
- You post something and check the likes and comments several times.
- You can’t enjoy something without posting it online first.
- You no longer have fun on social media.
- You think you’re spending too much time online.
You might not relate to all the signs mentioned here, but even if one or two rings true for you, it is time for a break from your socials.
Steps for a Successful Social Media Detox
If you are here and reading this article, you have already taken the first step towards becoming more self-aware. Pat yourself on the back!
To ensure your success in this new phase of your life, we have mapped out a general template that you can choose for your cleansing process. Feel free to tweak these steps to what works best for you.
The first thing you must do is define your expectations and goals for this social media detox. Do you want to reduce your screen time? Is there a platform you want to filter out from your life? Some goals you could have are:
- Reduce your time spent online.
- Limit platforms that hurt your well-being.
- Manage time for your everyday tasks by setting a specific time for social media.
- Reduce the need for being liked by others.
- Become more composed and considerate to others online.
- Reduce the effect other users have on your mood.
These are some goals you might have, or you might have a completely different goal. Whatever it may be, identify it and plan to achieve it.
Set a Time Limit
Instead of going cold turkey, you can start by limiting how much time you spend on social media. You can use third-party apps that restrict access to selected social apps.
Before doing so, ask yourself if there are a few apps that you need to restrict or do you want to take a break from all and any social platforms you use.
You can allocate a certain hour for socializing online and trade the rest of the time you would normally spend online with a positive activity like hanging out with family or friends.
Turn Off Push Notifications
It is easy for our minds to go crazy when constantly seeing notifications about how many likes and comments the latest post has gotten. The brain’s reward system becomes active when you receive such notifications increasing your dependence on social media to the point of addiction.
So, it is best to turn off push notifications and reset your brain.
Reduce or stop posting on social media for a while. This might be difficult for you, especially if you post every moment of your life on social media. However, afterward, the urge to check your notifications will decrease.
Inform Your Friends and Family
Before you take the next step, inform your friends and family that they won’t be able to reach you on your social media channels. You don’t want them to worry about your well-being. This transition is new for you and everyone in your life.
Log Out From Your Accounts
The next step is to log out from all your social media accounts, or the accounts on your selected forum. You must log out from all devices from which you access the platforms. This is a crucial step necessary for this process.
Try staying logged out for a month and notice if you feel any difference in your health and behavior.
Remember Why You Are Doing This
It is easy to lose sight of why you are going through this detox process. Remember your initial goals and steel yourself against naysayers and your temptations.
You took this step to become a better version of yourself and improve your quality of life. Don’t hesitate.
Deactivate or Delete Account
If, after logging out, you feel better, then you might want to go a step further and deactivate your accounts. Of course, you don’t have to do this to all your social accounts, but you might benefit by deactivating or deleting a few platforms from your use.
To sum it up, the increasing dependency on social media platforms is creating a climate of isolation and damaging our mental health. This is why it is vital to limit the usage of these platforms and replace time spent on social media with healthier and more productive activities. The process, as we have outlined above, is challenging but rewarding. We hope this article helps you detox from social media.
Want more tips and tricks with updates? Then stay tuned!
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