It’s safe to assume there is no end in sight for society’s infatuation with social media. More apps and platforms pop up every day. It’s easy to feel pressured to join the next big channel, update your status with something amazing and curate every last photo. Not only can social media consume your time, but psychologists say most people who use social media compare themselves to the lives of everyone they know (and don’t know). This can end up having a serious impact on self-esteem, create feelings of competition and even contribute to depression.
If you’re feeling anxious, stressed or depressed, you might benefit from a social media detox. In fact, studies reveal that the amount of time you spend on social media is directly related to whether or not you feel stressed out or happy. A detox, whether weaning out usage or taking a hiatus all-together isn’t always as easy as it sounds. Social media is designed to be addictive and when users cut it out, they can feel withdrawal symptoms, including a profound fear of missing out.
By connecting with the real world, living in the moment and gaining more free time, you can take control of your social media usage and improve your overall wellness.
Discover our top four tips to get started.
1. Create tech-free zones.
It helps to consciously disconnect from social media at key times. Try creating tech-free zones in your home, such as the bedroom and dinner table. Next, highlight tech-free zones you can establish throughout your day, like during your commute. While riding the bus or waiting in line might seem like ideal times to check in with Facebook, try to resist the urge and instead take in your surroundings.
2. Implement a social media curfew.
Do you find yourself in a social media black hole before sleep? Set a social media curfew each night, such as 8 p.m., to avoid the endless scrolling in bed. If your cellphone or tablet become your bedtime companion, read these tips to disconnect and discover better sleep.
Also, start your day without touching your phone for the first 30 minutes. Having a morning routine sans technology lets you ease into your day centered and stress-free.
3. Turn off push notifications.
Adjust your phone setting to only get alerts from calls or texts. Not getting alerted by every post, tweet and like update will make you feel less overwhelmed and attached to your phone.
4. Hold yourself accountable.
Not sure if you have the willpower to stay away from social media? Download AppDetox , a free app that lets you set the number of times an app can be opened during a timeframe, such as work hours or after 5 p.m.
Wondering what to do with your newfound free time? Swap time scrolling through your Facebook feed with these outdoor activities that allow you to be social (in real life!).
Spend your evenings getting active and meeting new people. Hone skills in a sport you’re already familiar with or try your hand at something completely new.
2. Arrange a walk or run club.
Call up your friends, neighbors and coworkers and coordinate a walk or run club after work hours. You’ll hit the trifecta: bonding with people, getting outdoors and staying active. Let your friends know you’re doing a social media detox and encourage them to join you!
Design your evening around outdoor dinner plans. Pack a picnic and enjoy it with friends in the park, grill on your porch or dine at a restaurant patio. If you can, ride your bike or walk to your destination to spend even more time outdoors and keep your phone out of sight.
Author: Stephanie Sample
June 27, 2017