There’s nothing with wrong social media and social networks per se, but even as early as 2008, people were already spending way too much time on Facebook and other platforms. Today, the average person probably cannot go a day without going on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or some other network. Still, there is nothing wrong with that, right?
The problem may not be as simple as one may think, but we’ve heard so many stories of people becoming “anti-social” in real life because of social media. Then there are those who use social media as their personal megaphone, throwing discretion to the wind. (Here’s a good read on this topic: Four Things I Learned from Facebook on the Topic of Discretion.)
There are a lot of benefits from using these platforms. We can follow social media news, which can actually help be aware of what’s going on in the world in real time. We can keep in touch with friends and family who may be physically far away.
But what if majority of your time is spent checking Facebook posts and statuses and tweets? Maybe it’s time you admit you have a social media addiction.
As they say, the first step in controlling a situation is admitting that you have a problem. If you can fully accept and admit to yourself that you have a social media addiction, then you’re already on the path to controlling it.
The second thing you can do is to take care of the details. Keep track of exactly how much time you spend on social media. Whether it is consuming content (keeping tabs on what your friends are doing, for example) or posting your own photos or whatnot, keep track of the time you spend doing that. Additionally, do not differentiate between the devices you use. It doesn’t matter if you use social media platforms on your computer, your phone, or your tablet – as long as you use it, write the time you spend. Do this religiously for a week or so.
Third, once you’ve established just how much time you waste due to your social media addiction, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work. Ask yourself: How many social media platforms do I use? Do I need them all? Perhaps you don’t have to be on every single platform out there. Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ may be more than enough, you know. Bottom line: cut down on the different platforms that you use.
Fourth, assign yourself specific time periods when you go on your social media networks. This could be the most difficult part, especially if you have online access via your phone. What is important is that you set your mind to it. You admit you have a social media addiction, right? You want to “fix it”, correct? Then set a self-imposed “social media time”. It could be 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes at night, for example.
Fifth, avoid temptation. Make it easy for yourself. When you’re at work, don’t login to your social media accounts. Close those windows/tabs. Log out on your phone.
It may not be easy at first, but after weeks of following your social media schedule, you’ll realize it’s not that important after all!