So you struggle with social media addiction? Don’t worry it’s more common than we want to accept. But its inclusion in our lifestyle is not an excuse to accept it without resisting.
We have come up with these mental and life hacks which focus on reducing social media usage to healthy limits.
Beware! You can’t master these hacks if you are void of the sense of accountability or aren’t committed to showing up for yourself.
1. Know the Triggers
The first mental hack towards kicking social media addiction to the curb is knowing yourself and your reasons to being addicted. There can be various reasons you become addicted to social media. These include the need for distraction, search for connection, neediness towards fame, or lack of fulfillment at the level of your inner self.
Fortunately, each of these needs can be fulfilled without artificial help from social media. The only requirement is that you know this need and commit to fulfilling it.
For example, there can be healthy distractions like real-life friends, sports, hobbies, or learning that can prevent you from stress and frustration when life gets overwhelming. A search for connection in the real-life friends and family will yield the best results. Obsession with fame arises from a lack of self-worth which we can treat by loving and respecting ourselves as we are. Ironically, this obsession grows with every success in the outer world and can only be fulfilled by inner satisfaction.
Know your triggers for using social media. Get them posted on the screen with (electronic or real) sticky notes and stick to real cures these triggers request.
2. Connect in Real Life
Whatever are your triggers, connecting with real-life people will help you navigate through these triggers easily.
Test new circumstances, people, and interactions. Let yourself make mistakes. Soon, you will find that this testing phase not only allowed you to overcome the social anxiety that comes with living a life behind the screen but it also helped you in knowing some great everyday heroes.
3. Be Mindful
Be mindful of how you are using your social media handles. Take some time to analyze your patterns. What kind of content is appearing in your feed? Are they inducing happiness? Do they threaten your mental health? What about jealousy?
Everything in your feed on social media portrays how you are approaching it. If you are approaching it with positive vibes, it will reflect happiness.
If you are approaching with ambition, depending on the intensity of this ambition, the social media will reflect jealousy, anxiety, inspiration, or depression.
Be mindful of what is your thinking pattern of interacting with people and responding to the information they share.
4. Try another Addiction
The best way to counter social media addiction is to create another distraction that would absorb your daily frustrations.
Think of something which occupies your heart. It can be a hobby, a meal (invest time in learning and preparing it), some meet-up, or chore.
Take it as an impetus to fuel your emotions and keep you engaged during more boring times of the day.
It’s best if the new distraction relates to your trigger that is seeking fulfillment through this addiction.
5. Weed Out Negative Influence
One tip to cure your social media addiction is to minimize the number of contacts you have online. You may want to keep only those friends who have a positive impact on your mental health, are helping you in your career, or are related to you from family.
To sum it all up, Reader Digest recommends these three questions to answer to weed out those virtual connections who are consuming most of your energy.
- Are they your acquaintances in real life?
- Do they add value to your life?
- Do they have a negative impact on your life?
If, for a contact, the answers to these questions are No, No, and Yes; don’t think twice before hitting the delete button.
6. Use Accountability Partner
Enroll an accountability partner from your friend, family, or the same old social network.
Keep a record of how much time you spend on your social media. And report.
Keep in mind that e perfect accountability partner is one who is struggling with a similar situation as you. If they are also worried about their social media addiction, you’ve found the best mate.
One major tip you may use to fight your social media addiction is to find appropriate rewards for maintaining a healthy balance.
Celebrate every, tiniest win you accomplish during your rehabilitation from this addiction.
Journal, appreciate, and rejoice! You have earned it.
8. Send Your Devices off to Bed
You know that notifications are the worst enemies in your fight against social media addiction. What you don’t know is that your obsession with these platforms is more frightening than these notifications.
Just answer this question: how many times at night do you wake up only to reach out to your phone so you can see an update on social media?
If you are really addicted, the answer to this question is a minimum one to two times each night.
You can avoid this sleep disruption if you only send your devices to bed before sleeping. All you have to do is to designate a space (bedroom) for these devices out of your room and lock them out there at night.
Cool! You are good to sleep!
You will find this arrangement uneasy for the first few days but will be soon weaned off these devices.
9. Observe Social Media Detox Every Once in a While
You can also choose to go cold turkey for anywhere from a week to a month.
Start by saying goodbye to all those friends with whom you regularly connect over these platforms. Update your status to show that you are on social media detox.
You may also want to rearrange your work routine so you don’t need internet-based communications much to perform.
Now you can switch off your device data connection and disconnect it from Wi-Fi.
Practice living in the real world during this detox period and re-learn the art of living.
Social media addiction can turn your life into a living hell. That’s especially true when we are only attracting negative emotions from these platforms.
If that’s your problem, don’t worry! You can easily recover from this condition using these nine simple techniques we have detailed above.
Do share which of these techniques works best for you!