Initially, social media was a part of us, but today, we are a part of social media. We are now known by our usernames rather than our first names. According to some researches, social media use releases the same chemicals in our brain as released by the intake of food, sex or drugs. No wonder it becomes difficult to quit social media. Despite this fact, many of us try to quit or at least limit our social media usage in our own ways. But how were we supposed to know that reminders won’t help! If we were that strong-willed, then we would not be needing reminders to remind us to switch from the virtual to the real world.
Why is it difficult to quit?
Quitting social media in a blink of an eye is not easy. Let’s face it, quitting social media at all is not at all easy. So let’s try to limit it. But our fear of missing out popularly known as ‘FOMO’ holds us back from limiting our social media engagement. What if I miss out on the highlights of the latest award show or what if I miss the trendiest celebrity gossip or worse, what if I do not post my next story within 24 hours!! Trust me, if you do not do that, the world will not come to an end and you will definitely not die. On the contrary, I am sure you will invest that time into something better, maybe sleep which we all know how much we are deprived of.
Even though numerous privacy concerns have been brought into the limelight, we still cannot help post about our “oh so happening lives!” We have been accustomed to being socially overloaded. This overload consists of constantly posting comments, giving advice to strangers (internet family) over the internet, answering questions/ reading answers to questions not really affecting us or voting for your favorite meme. We should remember that social media was introduced in our lives to make it simpler and not to give us depression and stress of keeping up with it.
What is it actually about?
It is not about absolute abstinence but about moderation. If the balance is disturbed, it can not only harm you physically (weak eyes, dark circle, the breaking of skin, etc.) but also mentally (negative thoughts, depression, stress, etc.). Social media is a boon from humans to humans. It can provide us with solutions to our day to day problems. It is a God sent for the introverts and they know it. But when it starts hindering our health and wellbeing, it is a sign that we should examine our social health.
How to manage your social media intake by not quitting it!
Here are some easy to follow tips for you to manage your social health. These are stress-free and will surely make you feel better.
Focus on quality: Follow content that is relevant to your area of concern. Do not follow everything that is there. Clear the clutter.
Focus on quantity: More is not better. In the race to be involved in every direction, you will miss what you are really interested in.
Use planning tools: There are apps and tools available which will help you identify when your account is most likely to witness a high engagement. You can take your potion of media meal at that time instead of refreshing your feed every second. One such app is Hootsuit.
Track it: Keep track of your daily usage. Know your hours spent on each social media platform. Almost every social media has a feature to help you track your usage patterns. Make the best of it.
Be real: Do not compare yourself to the people on social media (so-called influencers). They are sponsored and have worked really hard to be called an influencer. Most of the pictures are highly edited and are played with lights and angles. Do not compare yourself to others there. You are not them and they are not you. We have unique identities and we should make sure that we do not lose it.
Set limits: Keep a reminder and set alerts to remind yourself to switch from virtual to the real world. Take breaks maybe just to drink water or stretch your legs.
Remember to stay close to nature: Make sure you switch off your phones and laptops may be for just 30 mins and take a walk in the park.
What to expect?
We do not want you to quit social media altogether but watch your intake. It is like your food diet, There is junk which is addictive and easy to access and there is a healthy food, proven to do wonders for our health. Like a meal plan, we need to have social media planning for your emotional, mental and physical health. This will make you wise and healthy inside out.