Thinking about a social media detox? Don’t get us wrong, social media is a great tool if used in moderation. At its best, social media helps us keep track of friends and family, even from a distance. It strengthens our relationships and communication skills and helps us to showcase our brand to the world.
Alternatively, the sad reality of today’s society is that we spend a lot of our time browsing our social media feeds, even at times we shouldn’t be – procrastinating and distracting ourselves.
If you’re ready to cut back, here are some easy tips to help you take a social media detox.
- Turn Off Notifications
To begin your social media detox, one of the simplest starter steps is to simply turn off your notifications! When notifications constantly pop up on your phone, your Apple watch, your tablet, and your desktop, it can be overwhelming. There’s so much pressure to check to see the latest message. If you get notifications on your phone, it’s as simple as adjusting the settings on your social media apps.
Turn off notifications on all social media platforms like:
- Facebook…and any other platforms you use.
If you must receive notifications (perhaps because your social media is associated with your work), you may still cut back. Simply turn off your popup notifications but allow them to be sent to your email.
- Track Your Time
If you aren’t sure whether a social media detox is necessary, monitor the time you spend on social media.
Here are a few tools to track your social media time:
It may shock you to discover days where you spend hours on social media. Seeing those usage numbers in black in white will give you the motivation you need to take a social media detox. What activities could you do instead of spending time on your screen?
- Move Your Social Media Apps
If you’re convinced you need a social media detox after viewing your screen time numbers, use this trick to shift your mindset: simply move your social media apps to a folder or a hidden spot on your phone.
Remove all social media from your bookmarks bar and start-up page in your internet browser as well.
It sounds silly, but human beings are creatures of habit and routine, so if we want to create new neural pathways in our brain and change our behaviour, we must break our “triggers.” Opening social media apps on your phone becomes automatic: you pick up your phone and tap your favourite app without thinking.
Moving your apps and icons for social media requires a tiny additional moment of thought before you click. In that moment, you stop being mindless with social media usage and instead it becomes more mindful and deliberate. You start to build new habits.
- Clean Up Your Social Media Groups
You may discover you belong to many social media groups you don’t even recall joining or want to belong to. Every time you look at your newsfeed, you’re inundated with a lot of information that no longer applies to your life.
Places to clean up your social media affiliations include:
- Facebook groups
- Groups on LinkedIn
- Pinterest group boards
- Twitter parties and sharing groups
It’s simple to opt out of groups, but it’s also a bit time consuming. If the objective of your social media detox is to spend less time on these platforms, then limit the time you spend cleaning up your groups to 15-20 minutes per platform.
Don’t feel bad about leaving groups that no longer serve your needs or interest you. Remember: your time is precious and you’re freeing it up so you can do more of what you love.
- Log Out Each Time
An easy trick is to completely log out of all platforms each time you stop using them. This is especially effective if you find yourself mindlessly clicking on Pinterest or Instagram each time you get a free moment.
Completely log out and close the browser each time you view social media. Like moving apps on your phone, logging in and out creates an extra step, giving you a moment’s pause before you scroll.
If you’re passing the time while waiting in a queue or for your 3D scanning to load, for example, use an app like Evernote to virtually “clip and save” articles you want to read later. Your browsing time will become more productive and intentional.
- Schedule Social Media Time
If you want to keep your commitment to achieving set goals, you need to add them to your agenda. Scheduling activities helps us reclaim our time and the same is true for scheduling social media use.
If you want to use social media, because you find it enhances your life or business, then create time for it. Determine which platforms are meaningful and important to you.
Schedule your social media time in 15-25-minute blocks. This way you’ll really engage with those you care about. During the scheduled time, comment on posts and admire photos all you want. If there’s an article you want to read, add it to your file to read later. This saves you from getting pulled into hours of reading comments on an article or looking through pictures that don’t interest you.
Make your time on social media mindful, deliberate, and purposeful rather than wasted.
7.Store Your Screens Away from Your Day-to-Day Living Activities
How many of us carry our phone with us all the time…
…to the dinner table?
Studies show blue light suppresses melatonin production, a chemical that’s important to our sleep. That means screen time before bed is disruptive to getting a good night’s rest.
To limit screen time:
- Store your phone away from your bed.
- Keep your phone in another room during meals and tasks.
- If you use it as an alarm, consider an inexpensive clock instead.
- When you wake up, don’t make your phone and social media your first priority.
- Set a designated time in the morning to check your email notifications and social media.
- Ban your phone from the table, the bathroom, and your bed.
While social media has many benefits, including keeping us connected over long distances and promoting your business; it can also negatively impact our lives. Simplify your social media use and focus on making it more intentional and purpose driven.
After your social media detox, you may even find yourself enjoying the platforms more, because you’ve adjusted your use to fit your lifestyle and not the other way around!
If we have left you feeling inspired to take a social media detox let us know! We would love to see what you create during your detox time!
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