We all know that it is very important to detoxify our bodies, our environment and in general our lives if we want a happy and peaceful life. The need to have a social media detox arises from this need to have a peaceful life itself. But, the problem is that not many people know that they need a social media detox. They may be feeling lonely, even if they have hundreds and thousands of friends and followers, or are depressed or anxious (because of the time spent on social media sites), but seldom will they say or even feel that. And in most cases, they have no major problem, it’s just that they need a social media detox. But, if you are depressed for some other reasons, then you should consider going to a doctor, on a serious note.
Answering these questions will determine whether you need a social media detox…
Social media addiction or obsession is coming out as a real problem in our internet-driven world. And the first step towards solving a problem is identifying and acknowledging it. Once you have acknowledged that you or anyone near you is indeed addicted, then going on a social media detox can be a viable and sometimes a needed option. You can start by answering these questions:
- Do you check your phone the first thing in the morning? Even before you check whether the Sun has risen or not??
- Do you pick up your phone at the slightest chance of being free?
- Do you feel you have less time than other successful people?
- Do you only think about the kind of postings to be made rather than actually enjoying a moment?
- Do you feel you have no time to exercise or read books?
These are just some of the main questions that may help you determine that you are wasting a lot of your precious time on social media sites. We have not even mentioned the effects that comparing your life with others has on your mind and self-esteem. We hope you know that this happens and if by chance you are not aware of this, then let us tell you that it is again true. Consider these questions:
- Do you think most people’s lives on social media is better than yours?
- Do you continuously compare your life’s aspects with others?
- Do you feel sad, and/or depressed about your condition?
- Do you try to become like someone else, even if that is not compatible with who you are?
- Do people around you complain that you are ignoring them or other important things in life?
All the above mentioned questions are like the problems that you may be facing by an overuse of social media sites. If you think you are having issues with all the above mentioned aspects, then my friend, you need a social media detox.
How to start the detox?
1. Deactivating your accounts- the first step!
The first and the most important step to take is to deactivate the accounts. We are not asking you to do it for forever. Just take a break for a few days in the starting and then go on for a few weeks. I do it quite often and I will confess that in the starting I do feel the urge to go back, but I hold my promise to myself and continue with the detox. You can tell your close friends and family that you are going to do this and give them some other option of reaching out to you if they need you.
2. Change the notification settings on your phone
The biggest time-consuming and concentration breaking culprit in the game of social media are the apps installed on your phone. If you could have chosen to mute those notifications and not get them, you would have not become so addicted in the first place. The constant ringing never lets you stay focused on anything and you end up wasting time that you don’t even know went where! So, the solution here is to either switch off the notifications or even better, just uninstall the apps.
3. Limit your time spent on social media
We understand that totally going off the radar may not be a possible option for many. In this case, you can set specific times and only visit social media sites during that time. Make sure that your work and other responsibilities are done before you head to check your accounts. Also, stick to your limitation.
These three steps are a great way to at least start your detox, and you can go further according to how you keep up with these changes.
Benefits of Social Media Detox
1. Ample amount of time
If you were the one who never had time to finish your tasks, then you will be in for a treat because you would have a minimum of 2 hours extra to do your work or spend time elsewhere. You would be surprised as to how long a day is when you do the most important things and not waste time.
2. Starting a new hobby or a part-time job
With the extra time that you get, you can start a new hobby, which can help you find something you are passionate about and live a better life in doing something that truly matters to you. Or you could even start a part-time job or an online course and learn new skills.
3. Real-life connections
Social media tends to make you a champion in connecting with people virtually, but what about your real person-to-person communication skills. The virtual world cannot replace the need for real human interactions and when you are offline, you can find time to meet friends and family.
4. You would not be comparing your life continuously with others
The tendency to consciously or unconsciously comparing your life with others reduces your confidence and self-esteem. When you take a break from social media, you can focus on the good things that are there in your life and feel gratitude for them, rather than feeling sorry for yourself. Being grateful for things that you already have makes more things of that nature to come to you.
5. Uplifting the mood
Some studies have shown that spending too much time on social media sites actually make you feel depressed. When you are less active on social media, and doing more of what makes you happy, the depressive states will not be there. If you walk for half an hour, you tend to feel so much better and this is possible when you decide to not scroll through your Facebook or Instagram feeds. You can even do meditation or listen to music or watch movies or read books, during the free time, and all these activities improve your mood.
6. You stop obsessing over unwanted parts of life
This is especially true regarding your past. Stalking your ex on social media, for example, is what many people are guilty of, and if you are not on social media, then you cannot do it. Moving on becomes easier if social media presence is not felt. Same is applicable for all other people whose presence might be disturbing your peace of mind.
7. You start living in the present moment
Do you know some people actually update their status right after they get married, literally from the altar! If people can do this, you can understand that many people actually just miss out on some important moments and the chance to make some precious memories while they try to post the details of their life on the social media accounts. Living life in the moment is of utmost importance if you want to live a fulfilled life and that can only happen if you are truly there, with your body, mind, and soul.
We hope you now understand the need for a social media detox and can decide whether you want it for yourself or not. The decision will obviously be yours, we can only say that if you do, you will start enjoying your life through things that truly matter the most.