To many, social media is an escape from reality. We spend hours upon hours getting lost in a makeshift reality, but while we lose time, others profit from stealing it. Now it is a bold assumption of me to make that you spend a lot of your time “networking”, perhaps you spend more of your time taking advantage of the network, if so then good for you, but for the rest of us, it would do us a lot of good to reduce our “social” time. Here are a few tips:
1. Taking A Social Media Detox
Opening Instagram grew to become more of a habit for me. Occasionally, I would pick up my phone and the first thing I would do was open Instagram without even thinking about it, I wanted to feed my addiction, it felt like a part of me and we would spend hours together. That’s when I decided a social media detox was something I needed. A social media detox is like a sabbatical from social media. Basically, stay away from any form of social media you find yourself addicted to. You might just find yourself a hobby or learn a new skill now that social media isn’t taking up all that time. It’s not that simple though, we have grown quite attached to social media, so we can’t expect addiction to disappear overnight, so I recommend taking it slow, start with a week maybe.
2. Turn off Notifications
Notifications are designed to draw our attention. For example, banners are designed to interrupt our current tasks and redirect our focus to them, with them comes a beep and a vibration, like a baby crying out for attention. Don’t believe their tricks, as innocent as they seem, notifications seek to control you, by turning them off, you say “I am in control and I will revisit in my own time”. Notifications form a bad habit within you without you realizing it and sooner rather than later when that sound comes through it acts as a cue to that habit that results in you opening the notification; you can read more about it here. Leave room for emergencies though, be selective on the notifications you leave on.
3. Create Some Friction
Don’t give yourself easy access to the social app, easy access means easier addiction. Hide it, keep it away from your Home Screen, or maybe even delete it, the harder it is to access the more likely you are to stay away from it. If it’s on your Home Screen, every time you see it, you are tempted to open it. The concept of practicing self-control is to avoid tempting situations.
The people with the best self-control are typically the ones who need to use it the least - James Clear
4. Find A Hobby
During your social media detox, find something new you are passionate about, use that alone time to figure out more about yourself, ask yourself questions like, who am I, what gets me excited you could find that after your detox you won’t revert back to a social media for satisfaction, you may think you know what you enjoy but there is always something out there you have been neglecting, try it, the worst thing that can happen is that you won’t like it, still, it’s better than wasting your time scrolling until 3 am.