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Do you need to unfriend yourself?

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Ding…Ding … Ding
When was the last time you checked your phone? Wait a minute… Are you on your phone right now? Don’t tell me you are reading this blog on your phone! 

Well, It’s true, The human capacity for information increased when the world of the internet exploded in the year 1983. Who knew at that time that in the coming ages humans will become slaves to the internet and dissolve in social media where social media detox will become a necessity. 

The internet provides us with a wealth of tremendous options to be more productive and achieve our goals – yet far too many of us waste our time and get unsatisfied with our lives as a result. Constant online distractions, addicting technologies, and the temptation of having the entire world at our fingertips may create a nagging voice that draws us away from our goals while feeding worry and sadness in our brains. 

In this blog, we will explore the avenues of social media detox: what is social media detox, what are the social media detox benefits, and how to do social media detox. We will begin by looking at some shocking figures of the latest social media usage and then move to why we need to disconnect with our social media platforms.

The New Social Media Trend

  • Social media is used by 57.6% of the total world population. 
  • The average daily usage of social media is 2 hours and 27 minutes.
  • One out of every 4 persons checks their phone every 30 minutes, and one out of every 5 checks it every 10 minutes. 
  • 75% of those aged 25 to 30 reported carrying their phones to bed.
  • Today, we receive five times as much information per day as we did in 1986, thanks to the internet, 24-hour television, and mobile phones.

This figure, however, pales in comparison to the amount of data we generate via email, social media, and text messaging. According to studies, the average social media user reads 285 pieces of material per day, or around 54,000 words (the length of an average novel). Just through social media, we are inundated with a thousand clickable links and 174 newspapers worth of material every day. If reading a full book every day seems hard, keep in mind that most individuals today skim information rather than reading it all.

As relevant, fascinating, or vital as the information may be for you or your business, it’s becoming increasingly important to develop methods that allow you to filter the wheat from the chaff in the moment—before you’re suffocated beneath a mountain of documents, blog posts, tweets, and text messages.

“Why have we gotten so reliant on social media?” is the question. How do you create a balance between the advantages of the online world without succumbing to social media addiction?

Social Media Detox: Disconnect To Reconnect

Social media detox is when you intentionally stop using and consuming social media for a specified period of time. The majority of social media detoxes go for 30 days, although some people go for seven days or even a year. This refers to times of social media abstinence that are initiated by the user.

A social media detox is when you consciously stop using and consuming social media for a specified period of time. In an ideal world, you’d fully stop using and consuming social media. This entails deleting and deactivating all social media apps from your phone, as well as temporarily blocking your social media accounts in some circumstances where this is possible.

Leaders need to detoxify from social media too. With the rise of the pandemic, leaders all around the globe are leaning toward more mental health problems. Anxiety, brain fog, and stress have become fellow companions who try to take away what’s left of the little mental peace. Even the range of meetings is having a troll on their brain. So now it has become extremely important not only for all of us but also the leaders to go on a social media detox routine.

Social Media Detox Benefits

With the advent of time, social media platforms have switched from a chronological feed to an algorithm-based feed to increase our dopamine hit. Have you ever wondered why video games have levels or why do we see the same pattern of posts that you like?

The answer is simple. Our brain is designed in a way that it rewards anything that will increase our likelihood of survival by releasing a neurotransmitter called dopamine in our brain. So every time we open our Instagram and move from one post to another without any effort, we are instantly rewarded with massive hits of dopamine. So every like, every notification, every new follower releases dopamine, and we get addicted. This might be crazy to believe but it’s true. Social media platform developers are well aware of this and they design their platform to feed our brain. What’s even sadder is that we live in a world that is designed to stimulate our emotions in order to maximise their profit. Here is a statement by Sean Parker, the first president of Facebook:

“We need to sort of give you a little dopamine hit every once in a while because someone liked or commented on a photo or a post or whatever.… It’s a social-validation feedback loop … exactly the kind of thing that a hacker like myself would come up with because you’re exploiting a vulnerability in human psychology.… The inventors, creators—it’s me, it’s Mark [Zuckerberg], it’s Kevin Systrom on Instagram, it’s all of these people—understood this consciously. And we did it anyway … it literally changes your relationship with society, with each other.… It probably interferes with productivity in weird ways. God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains.”

So now the question is, do you want to live like this? Or do you want to change, give up social media and go on a 30-day social media detox regime?

Here are a few social media detox benefits to help you understand why giving up social media is necessary. 

Less Comparison

Comparison takes a toll on our mental wellbeing more than anything else and social media causes a lot of comparison for the brain to feed on. We are happy with our bank balance until our neighbor gets a promotion. It’s true. Humans have the tendency to be greatly affected by the people surrounding them rather than themselves. We like our house until our colleague buys a bigger mansion. We feel devastated, sad, and much worse, we go online, open our Instagram account and again fall in the hamster wheel to sadden over more achievements of our friends.

Reclaim More Time

One of the most important social media detox benefits is to reclaim time. Have you ever noticed the Instagram feature of 1-hour reminders? What is the first thing that pops in your brain when the notification comes up? Is it time to get back to work or is it I didn’t even realise how much time I wasted? 

With social media detox, you will have more time to invest in your business, more time to invest in a hobby, more time for family, and other activities that you once wanted to do but never caught on to. Without social media distraction, you will have more energy to invest in activities like hiking, sleeping, eating, swimming, and many others.

Get Focused 

On average, we check our phones 80 to 300 times a day. Astonishing, right? All the multiple hours you spend scrolling through feeds and snippets divert your mind and leave you with various thoughts and anxiety. Without these 300 interruptions a day, you will have greater clarity and create a vision in life. 

You are forced to concentrate on the task at hand when using a streamlined device. Consider this: all of the symbols, incoming emails, and various notifications are obtrusive. When your attention is continuously diverted by push notifications or software warnings, it’s difficult to stay fully focused. This necessitates the division of your attention, which has been shown to be a productivity killer. Think about how easier it will be for you to focus on your work, your business, your life, and your day-to-day activities.

Less Anxiety

Social media adds up to our anxiety. We fear missing out on stuff, we fear headlines, trends, and feeds and our mind gets cluttered up. Because social media tends to jade us and make us more cynical, you’ll find yourself becoming more cheerful over time. 

You’ll also notice that you’re not comparing yourself to others as much. You won’t feel obligated to keep up with the Aggarwals in the same way. This will significantly reduce your anxiety. There’s a lot of evidence that says social media use and consumption are to blame for the majority of today’s worry.

Better Mental Health

Low levels of social media users have been linked to improved mental health. Spending too much time on social media can have a negative impact on your physical health. According to a study, “excessive use of social media and digital gadgets may have a deleterious impact on sleep quality,” and “too much social media use might cause headaches and visual difficulties.”

Studies from all around the world have proven that spending too much time on social media may be harmful to your mental health, and taking breaks, even if it’s just once in a while, is definitely recommended.

Privacy

Every second, social media algorithms ingest data about you. What types of links do you prefer to click on? What videos do you watch from beginning to end? How rapidly do you switch from one task to another? When you do these things, where are you? In-person and online, who are you interacting with? What kinds of expressions do you make with your face? What were you doing right before you decided whether or not to buy something? Is it better to vote or not to vote? 

All of these metrics, as well as a slew of others, have been matched with similar readings about the lives of tens of thousands of other people as a result of widespread surveillance. Algorithms link your actions to the actions of practically everyone else. Although the algorithms do not fully comprehend you, there is strength in numbers, particularly enormous numbers. If a lot of other people who like the foods you like were turned off by images of a candidate with a pink border instead of a blue one, you’ll probably be as well, and no one needs to know why.

How to do Social Media Detox?

  • Do you switch tabs and check your LinkedIn update?
  • Do you check notifications first thing in the morning?
  • Do you scroll through/update Instagram just before sleeping?
  • Is Snapchat a priority during a vacation?
  • Do you feel the need to post photos every week?
  • Do you feel obligated to use social media in your free time?
  • Do you use Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram every day?
  • Do you feel happy when you get more than a hundred likes on a photo?
  • Is your social media time screen more than 2 hours a day?
  • Do you feel compelled to regularly update your LinkedIn profile?

How many of these questions did you answer “yes” to?

If the number was six or more, you’ve clearly turned into a social packrat. You’re not alone, thankfully. Many people have let their social media accounts spiral out of hand. So here is a question: if I ask you to quit social media today, will you be able to do it?

Most of the answers will be yes. 

But pause for a moment and ask yourself again, will you be able to leave social media for 30 days? 

Well, giving up on social media or social media detox is not that hard. In reality, you may break down this big undertaking into a series of tasks. Here are a few ways to help you in the process of social media detox.

Commit to 30 Days

Some say it takes 21 days to form a habit, while others say it might take as long as 66 days. The truth is that the amount of time varies greatly from one individual to the next and from one habit to the next. Some habits are simple to form, while others take more work. My recommendation is to make a 30-day commitment to decluttering (or a month to keep it simple). However, you might discover that you finish your social media detox project before the end of the month. If that’s the case, use the rest of the month to declutter something else in your house or business.

Delete Social Media Apps

Begin the process of social media detox by deleting the social media applications. Delete Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, and all the other social apps you use. This may be hard but remember that hiding apps on your phone will not be able to help you. You need to let them go and delete them. To make this step easier, you should first deactivate your account and then uninstall these apps.

Download Extension

You could also install an application or a tool on your computer that allows you to block social media websites. Freedom and Cold Turkey are two ideas I like. You can also download extensions that will not allow you to use social media. One popular example is Self Control. This isn’t needed, but it’s a good idea, especially if you use your computer or laptop to check social media.

If you’re still having trouble despite removing apps, have a trusted family member or friend reset your account passwords and give them to you only when your detox is complete. Deleting your applications and downloading extensions is necessary to regain the consciousness that you have lost.

Set Time Limitations 

This step is only for the ones who are not able to delete their apps and cannot commit to 30 days. They can take baby steps and start by first putting a time limit. Visit the setting of every social media app and put time limits. This will regularly post a timely reminder, to help you remember that you need to stop the use of social media. If this becomes easier for you then you can apply the first two steps.

Sit with Yourself

People have even been known to update their Facebook and Twitter profiles from the altar,  right after getting married. That is a good and relevant update. However, you must allow yourself to be alone and enjoy some alone time. Sit alone with yourself, look around, notice minute things and feel everything.

Learn to appreciate the present moment. Spend more time admiring your environment by going on outdoor walks or sitting in a nearby park and watching people. Instead of seeing it all happen on a crafted photo or movie on your screen, you might find yourself appreciating the beauty in the world around you. Remember, your experiences will be of lower quality and less memorable if you live everything through the lens of social media rather than actively interacting with them.

Meditate 

Meditation can help you be more attentive to what you’re doing, including how you use social media, in addition to helping you manage stress and sleep better. Watch a few relaxing meditation videos or download a famous app like Headspace if you need some help.

Plan for Obstacles

Every new habit will come with its own set of challenges. You can take proactive action to overcome your barriers if you know what they are ahead of time.

  • Boredom with the routine 
  • Uncertainty about how to handle specific tasks are just a few examples of common roadblocks
  • Overwhelm, worry, or guilt 
  • Uncertainty about where to begin

You won’t be caught off guard if you prepare for these challenges. The simplest answer is to utilise an approach known as “If-Then Planning,” in which you write scripts to help you overcome these challenges. One example is as follows: “I’ll commit to exercising if I’m having problems not utilising social media first thing in the morning.”

Try these steps and do not waiver from these steps for the next 30 days. Trust me, the process will be hard but it will bring great results. It’s time now, “Unplug your mind and recharge your soul.” Don’t let yourself be driven by the Mark Zuckerbergs and Kevin Systroms of the world. Instead, just unfriend yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Social media detox?

When you go on a social media detox, you cease using and consuming social media for a set amount of time. The bulk of social media detoxes last 30 days, although some people go for as little as seven days or as long as a year. This refers to the user-initiated periods of social media abstention.

What are the popular Social media detox benefits?

To help you realise why giving up social media is vital, here are a few social media detox benefits.

  • Less Comparison
  • Reclaim More Time
  • Get Focused 
  • Less Anxiety
  • Better Mental Health
  • Privacy

How to do social media detox?

Giving up social media or going on a social media detox isn’t difficult. In actuality, this massive effort may be broken down into a succession of jobs. Here are a few suggestions to aid you with your social media detox.

  • Commit to 30 Days
  • Delete Social Media Apps
  • Download Extension
  • Set Time Limitations
  • Sit with Yourself
  • Meditate
  • Plan for Obstacles

What are the popular social media trends?

A whopping 57.6% of the world’s population uses social media.

The average amount of time spent on social media per day is 2 hours and 27 minutes.

Every 30 minutes, one out of every four people checks their phone, and one out of every five people checks it every 10 minutes. Seventy-five percent of those in their twenties and thirties admitted to bringing their phones to bed.

Why deleting Social Media Apps is important?

Start your social media detox by removing all of your social media apps. Delete all of your social media apps, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, and others. This may be difficult, but keep in mind that concealing apps on your phone will not help you.

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