Social media is used by the average person for an hour and forty minutes per day. If you multiply that by a lifetime, it equates to over five years of one’s life. Is this the best way to use your time? Have you ever thought about what it would feel like to go on a social media detox? Here are 10 benefits.
Social media has been shown to make us more lonely, narcissistic, and depressed than ever.
What is a “Social Media Detox”?
A social media detox can be described as a short break. It can be as simple or complex as you want.
I don’t think I will be able to convince you to delete your Facebook account due to the sheer popularity of social media. You might consider taking a break from Facebook.
You can take a break for a week, or even a weekend to feel how it makes you feel. You could call it a vacation or a cleanse.
You’ll be able to do a lot more in the hour and forty minutes you save each day.
These are the benefits of taking a break from social media. Perhaps you will even find reasons to stop using social media. You could even do a clean-up of your social media accounts!
A Social Media Detox: The Benefits
1. Don’t be on the comparison roller coaster
Comparison is the enemy of joy. Imagine this: On Monday morning you wake up, ready to face the week ahead.
As you sip your coffee, you scroll through Facebook and discover that the girl with whom you shared a third-grade seat is now on a vacation to Costa Rica. Again.
Your college roommate’s best friend posted about her promotion at work and beautiful new car.
Your sister’s childhood friend is taking her gorgeous children to the zoo today.
Soon, you will see Mondays as just another boring, exhausting workday followed by an evening of couch sitting as everyone else is enjoying their lives.
Imagine if you were just getting up, getting ready for the day, and going to work. You wouldn’t have something to compare your life with at the back of your head.
2. You can be more productive with your time
Do you have a desire to read a book or exercise?
All of this can be done in an additional hour and forty minutes a day.
You will feel more accomplished by writing down a list of tasks and checking off a few items than scrolling through social media.
You can be more mindful of your time if you let go of this huge distraction.
3. Stop telling your story in Facebook posts
This is something I am completely guilty of. I was always able to translate everything that happened to me into a Facebook post.
Not all things are meant to be shared. You might be happy but someone else just doesn’t really care. I mean, what’s the point of then showing your life to the world?
4. Stop being annoyed at (or participating) in social media narcissism
Social media posts can create an illusion of importance, from selfies to sharing too many photos, and it can be a great way to show off your worth.
To get likes or comments, it can be exhausting to curate your online image.
With the detox, you’ll be able to see the world without being influenced by social media and stop trying to impress others.
It will also save you the irritation of reading drama-creating and preachy posts.
5. It isn’t a representation of real life.
When it comes to ‘curating your image’, you can rest assured that you will never know the full story about what others post on social media.
Do you remember your classmate from high school who went on a vacation to the Caribbean? She didn’t mention that her trips had landed her in $20k credit card debt and that she doesn’t know how to repay it.
What about your roommate’s friend, and her new promotion. Did she mention that her job can be so stressful that it makes it difficult to sleep at night?
Your sister’s friend, who is taking her gorgeous children to the zoo, did she mention that she’s getting lonely? She can not say that she feels like she’s too busy being a stay-at-home mom and cannot face another day at the house.
6. You can improve your real-life relationships
The struggles that make all the above people human could be shared if you actually spoke with them in person. Sharing our struggles is one way we can form real-life friendships.
Do not assume friendships with your social network of followers. A conversation is the best way to connect. Call a friend and suggest meeting up for coffee or dinner.
7. You can overcome FOMO (FEAR OF MISSING OUT)
For some, this may be the most difficult part of detox. Experts agree that social media has been designed to be addictive because of humans’ fear of missing out.
There are many reasons why you might feel withdrawal symptoms. It should be a lot easier if you turn off your notifications.
You won’t miss anything, so rest assured. For a few days, focus on your priorities and life. See how it feels.
8. Focus on the present moment and live in it
It can be difficult to truly experience your life if you are only focused on documenting it on social media.
You’ll miss the beautiful moments at a wedding or at preschool graduation if all you want to do is post pictures and give updates to the world on your life. (Responding to useless comments)
Do not fool yourself into believing that you are ‘creating memories’ just by sharing them on social media.
You won’t remember the experience if you didn’t pay attention. Those are memories you will never get back. It is impossible to capture the moment since you’re not really there. The body is but the mind isn’t.
9. You can improve your mood
Do you feel depressed? Social media may be a major factor in your feelings of depression. Research shows that social media use can lead to anxiety and depression.
Feelings that you are inferior to others, stalking your ex and the time wasted browsing friends’ profiles all contribute to feelings of disconnection and emptiness.
10. Reconnect with yourself
Many people use social media to find validation from outside sources, even though they don’t realize it.
Your self-worth can only be described as your SELF-worth. The number of likes and shares you get on a post doesn’t tell you how intelligent or funny you are or how interesting your life is.
It’s also easier for people to make harsh or judgemental comments right from their keyboards than in real life. Start living physically and not in the metaverse.
Okay, you have taken a few days, a weekend, or even a whole week off social media. You don’t have to give it up forever. Now is the time to make some changes in how you use it.
You should block anyone who makes you feel inferior, posts angry rants, or says things that you find offensive, annoying or depressing.
You can leave your friends who share inspirational quotes, funny photos, and cute animal pictures in your feed.
You can post positive things, or you could just stop posting at all.
After the detox, perhaps you will realize that you are now paying less attention to what people think about you and more to what you think about yourself.