Lately, social media has become a chore for me. Constantly trying to promote my posts and beating the algorithm to barely receiving any likes on something that I worked hard for can be very overwhelming and frustrating. Especially when social media is such a toxic place to be on. I can’t go a day online without seeing a negative post go viral or reading some hateful comment in the replies. Social media is not a good place for your mental health. Recently, I wrote an essay for my class about the harmful effects of social media on your life. I learned that it can dangerously affect your mental and physical health. You can develop or worsen issues such as anxiety, depression, loneliness, self-harm, or even suicidal thoughts. These issues are more common than you think. We don’t realize that amount times we subconsciously pick up our phones throughout the day and scroll aimlessly down our social media feeds. I also learned different methods that you can use to combat these issues before they become worse. Social media was made to be addicting, but all we need to do is learn how to control it.
So, here are some of the helpful tips that I learned on how to take an effective break from social media. I hope these can help anyone also struggling with the harmful effects of social media in their life.
1.) Turn Off Your Phone.
I feel that this one is pretty simple but actually works for me. I have been doing this recently when I am overwhelmed. Instead of just closing the apps, I fully turn off my phone. Sometimes, when I close the apps, I am too tempted to open them again. By turning off my phone and putting it in another room, I don’t hear the sound or see the screen light up when I receive notifications. I am to ignore it better than I would if it was on.
2.) Set Time Limits On Your Phone.
If you are a person who cannot completely turn off your phone, then this tip might be a better option. On my phone, there is a choice to set a time limit on the apps or websites that I use. I can also see what apps I use the most and how many hours each day. Once I reach my limit, I will get a notification, and I can choose whether to close the app or ignore it. Even though I usually just press ignore, I will challenge myself to actually exit the app and do sometime else. Some apps such as TikTok or Instagram also have this feature where you can monitor your usage and remind you to take a break. There are also apps that you can download that will do this too!
3.) Find A Hobby.
This tip also seems pretty simple but works. I have heard many people say when they are busy, they don’t even think to check their social media. They are too busy participating in real-life activities and human interaction to care about what is happening online. When you are constantly spending all of your time scrolling down these apps, you start to lose time, and you don’t even realize it. Before you know it, you’ve spent most of your day online without being outside or with friends and family. One of my hobbies is blogging. Even though this involves being on the computer, I would rather spend more time writing than posting on social media. Also, going to the park or just spending more time outside!
4.) Go Cold Turkey and Deactivate or Permanently Delete.
This may be one of the more challenging things to do. If you are like me, you spend a lot of time organizing your account and creating the right aesthetic. It would be hard to let all of that hard work go. Especially if you have built a following and have a lot of people that you talk to daily or if your career depends on social media. If you feel like your social media usage has gone overboard, this might be a necessary thing to do. I often delete my Twitter, and it feels great not having to worry about how many followers I have or planning what to post. Even though deactivation is temporary, some even permanently delete their account. There are videos on YouTube of people going cold turkey, deleting their accounts without warning, and spending their lives without social media. This is something that I might consider in the future because, in the end, social media will not last forever. We will all have to let it go someday, especially when our health is at stake.
Even though social media can have many benefits, it can be very harmful. As long as we monitor our daily usage, we can take control of how it affects us and our health. I hope these tips are helpful and that we all finally choose to take a much-needed break from social media.
How Many Hours A Day Do You Spend On Social Media? Comment Below!
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