Wednesday, February 28, 2024

How To Stop Addiction To Social Media

Social Media Addiction And How It Affects Health

How to Break Your Social Media Addiction

How we use social media has drastically changed since the dawn of websites like Facebook. Initially, Facebooks platform was a simple way of connecting with friends and family and posting cheesy pictures or status updates on Facebooks wall.

Over time, however, with the emergence of a more picture-oriented platform like Instagram, we upped the ante. This is where the slippery slope emerged, and were still dealing with it presently.

Take a look at some of the most popular Instagram profiles today. Youll likely see a pattern of manicured photos and perfect layouts, followed by millions of users. This has become an Instagram goal, and it perpetuates the idea that beautiful pictures equate to a happy user. We know thats simply not the case, but this mentality and desire to create a perfect life online for all to see is feeding depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem.

Likewise, its causing us to lose our sense of authenticity and realness because the real world problems dont make for beautiful social media posts. Instead, we hide behind the beauty thats only covering up our sadness, grief, or loneliness. Because weve carefully created our online world, weve stepped out of our real one. Social media addiction is this practice of escapism.

Breaking The Social Media Addiction

Social media addiction can consume the lives of people who use these sites excessively. The condition is treatable, however, and many people have successfully recovered.

Reducing screen time, also called digital detox, and replacing it with real-life activities, such as sports or hobby groups, can ease the dependence on social media. However, for people whose addiction to social media is too severe, professional help and counseling may be required to overcome the associated withdrawal symptoms.

If youre having a hard time controlling your social media use, or feel as if you or your child is exhibiting signs of social media addiction, there is hope and help.

Take an honest assessment of the benefits you get from your social media presence, and document times when scrolling through your or TikTok has made you feel anxious or depressed.

Exploring the why beyond social media can help you understand your triggers. Identifying the core need to skim social media can shed some light on what could be missing from your life.

Once youve discovered your triggers or cues, create a plan to combat them. You may come up with solutions such as taking a walk around the block when youre bored at work or texting or calling someone directly when youre curious about what your friends are up to.

Delete the apps from your phone, turn off notifications or leave your phone off or in another room.

Causes Of Social Media Addiction

How and when exactly social media addiction happens? Its slow and most of the people wouldnt get to know that theyre getting addicted. Because it appears normal when everyone is on social media, active, posting, chatting online.

Social media is indeed entertaining and a lot of times, useful. It requires self-discipline to put limits.

When we fail to put limits, it leads to overuse of social media, eventually making the person addicted.

The habit of feeling good with so much virtual attention from strangers starts disconnecting us from reality. It happens so slowly that we dont even get to know.

Causes of social media addiction:

  • It may start with using social media for work. Most of the self-employed entrepreneurs and business owners are using social media to promote their services and make sales. It begins with business only to find that theyre spending over 6-8 hours every day scrolling, surfing social networks. 50% of it is not business.
  • Lack of attention and love at home or with dear ones. Youth is getting addicted to social media for the attention they receive on their photos, videos when their parents are working. The lack of family time is making the youth seek love, care and attention from other people online.
  • Also Check: How To Beat Eating Addiction

    Create The Physical Distance With Your Devices

    When you want to avoid the addiction of social media, so it is important to create physical distance between you and your devices as we knew that in todays world it is difficult to stay away with smartphones, but at least at night, we can create a physical distance with the devices. If you sleep with your smartphone next to your bed, then it is essential to change this habit. Before sleeping, stay away with your smartphones because this habit permits you to get a good sleep and concentrate on mindfulness. This will also help you to focus on studies because social media creates a distraction on studies. So make sure that you create a physical distance with your smartphone.

    Why Is Social Media Addictive

    30+ Catchy Stop Social Media Addiction Slogans List, Taglines, Phrases ...

    Social media affects mental health through the reward pathway in the brain.3 When we perceive something with excitement, we activate dopamine production in the brain, which triggers serotonin. This cascade of neurotransmitters is what creates the euphoric rush upon receiving positive feedback.3

    There is evidence to support benefits for the brain when social media is used in moderation. Research has found a connection between a large social media network and increased grey matter density.4 Grey matter density contributes toward the ability to perform tasks.4 Accordingly, the ability to recognize faces and heightened memory is generally found for those with larger social media networks.4,5

    On the other hand, there are negative effects that may ultimately become substantial if gone unchecked. Increased desire to be on social media and experience of withdrawal when not engaged creates stress on the body. As anxiety increases, so does cortisol, which overtime becomes toxic in your immune system.

    Another concern is that it reduces attention span.5 With so many options of what to view, write, or engage with, it can become increasingly challenging to remain focused. For those who feel a responsibility to be aware of what is going on in the world or are particularly drawn to bad news, the potential for doomscrolling also increases.

    Read Also: What To Do When Your Child Is Addicted To Electronics

    Go Cold Turkey & Quit Social Media

    Depending on how bad things have gotten, it might be time to go cold turkey and stay off social media entirely. If you’re spending more time on social media than you are interacting with people in real life, give yourself a reality check by having a holiday from social media. Decide how long it’s going to be, inform your friends online how long you’ll be away and how they can reach you if they need you in person, and delete your apps. If you normally spend a minimum of two hours on social media per day, you will have an extra 14 hours per week which are totally free to do whatever you want with letting the world be your WiFi-free oyster.

    Additional reporting by

    Frequently Asked Questions About Teen Social Media Addiction

    How can I keep my teen from developing unhealthy habits of social media?

    Its important to remember that, while youre fighting an uphill battle, you can have an influence on how your teen sees the effects of social media use. Rather than force your teen to do anything, you need to leave it up to them to make the right decisions but help nudge them towards those decisions. It all begins with structure. If your teen is young enough that youre still in control of their privileges, work on limiting their screen time and monitoring their phone usage.

    Dont invade your childs privacy but remind them to balance their time spent online with chores, homework, and encourage them to spend time with their friends outside rather than cooped up. Teens today are digital natives and have grown up in a world that is intertwined with the Internet and its social networks. Their idea of friendship and communication is far different from that of their parents but there is a difference between social media use and social media abuse.

    If my child spends time on social media every day, are they addicted?

    The term addiction can often be used a little too liberally, and its important to differentiate addicted behavior from usage. Not only are the overwhelming majority of teenagers on some form of social network online, but more than half spend nearly all of their time somehow connected to the internet. Its not realistic to condemn them all as addicts.

    Recommended Reading: How To Get Out Of Alcohol Addiction

    Why Is Social Media So Addictive

    Variable reward system

    Just like any other addiction, social media addiction is one that operates on a variable-reward system . This system is defined as when someone will receive a reward or some kind of satisfaction when they do a certain action, however, they will not always receive that reward. Thus, they donât always know when that good feeling will come next, so they keep repeating the action in hopes of experiencing that reward again. Think of it like gambling: once you win a little bit, you will keep trying to get that win again no matter how long it takes.

    The neuroscience of social media addiction

    This variable-reward system is essential to social mediaâs addictive nature. In comparison to non-social media addicts, the reward system areas of the brain are more sensitive and more active in people with symptoms of this addiction . Essentially, these rewarding experiences on social media generate dopamine in our brains. Eventually, our brains become trained in wanting to check social media in order to experience this dopamine over and over again .

    What Causes Social Media Addiction

    How Social Media Destroys Your Life? | Science behind Addiction | Dhruv Rathee

    Addictiveness yes, social media and online media in general is addictive in a certain sense of the word. The companies that run todays most successful social networking apps and websites work hard on improving and growing the amount of people they can bring onto their platform, alongside maximizing the amount of time a person spends on their platform. The more time a person spends, the more ads they can run, and the more theyre likely to make a profit off their product. In the end, its a matter of business, and any great online platform is built for brutal efficiency when it comes to getting people to stay.

    Stress & Self-Esteem Social media can be a great tool for good, allowing people to stay in touch despite thousands of miles of distance, communicating at near-instant speeds. It can also be a great tool to engage with communities, receive customer feedback, organize groups and meetups, and more. However, due to the way social media incentivizes an almost voyeuristic look into everyones life while incentivizing maximum curation and reputation editing, online media often makes a persons life look much more exciting and alluring than yours as well as making it look much more exciting and alluring than it really is. This can severely take advantage of peoples sense of social competitiveness and belonging, often making them feel outclassed, or less attractive.

    You May Like: What Is The Most Addictive Drug In America

    What Are The Mental Health Effects And Risks Of Social Media Addiction Or Overuse

    Lets continue on the premise that addiction, assuming we can come to a consensus at some point as to what would constitute that, is the worst level of negative impact tech can have on an individual human being.

    In this article about the science and statistics on smartphone addiction we also focus on the positive effects of smartphone usage. But what are the general negative impacts or risks of digital device usage on the individual, that we can say are supported by research?

    Experiment #: The Social Happy Hour

    The next experiment I tried was dedicating a specific hour of my day completely for use on social sites. I set up a calendar invitation from 4-5pm: a happy hour at the end of the work day to connect, enjoy, and run across new people and ideas after nearly 12 hours of working or parenting.

    Results: Creating a built-in stress relief hour where I know that I can slide into social research and browsing , helped me avoid temptation at other hours of the day. It was easier to replace a bad habit with a better one than to focus all my energy on eliminating the bad habit.

    • Strangely, consolidating all of my social media use into a single hour made it seem less exciting. I noticed that Id be finished scrolling within 20 minutes, or 30 minutes on a long day. Theres only so much sustained reading and commenting that I can do.
    • I was much more efficient at responding to all of the requests that come my wayrather than have metered out conversations trickling through the day, I buckled down, opened up new browser tabs for each meaningful mention or request, and whipped through it.
    • My content creation went way down. Instead, I began to plan ahead with a loose Evernote file for social media status updates and things I wanted to share, and the 12-hour delay between composing and pressing publish gave me a better chance to reflect on whether instant-sharing was really still necessary.

    Don’t Miss: How To Break Cell Phone Addiction

    Ically Schedule Each Day

    Meticulously planning each day is the best way to approach deep work and one of the best strategies on how to stay focused at work. It imposes time limits, creating a healthy pressure of time.

    One of the main reasons why most people lose focus during a workday is because of a lack of a structured plan or schedule.

    Newport acknowledges that not every day will go exactly as planned. But recommends that you schedule every minute of your day regardless.

    The time-blocking approach will hold you accountable by allocating specific periods for specific types of work. Dividing your workday into blocks and assigning activities to each one allows you to prioritize whats most important.

    There are different time-boxing methods such as Day-theming. Day-theming is dedicating each day of the week to a specific theme instead of switching between different types of work or areas of responsibility throughout the day. This strategy is not about scheduling a perfect day. Its really about giving structure to your workday by forcing you to be more intentional with your time.

    When you schedule each workday youll be more control of time because youll know exactly what you want to accomplish and when.

    Also Check: How To Help Someone Who Is Addicted

    Affecting Your Brain & Mental Health

    How to stop social media addiction from stealing your attention?
    • 1. Social media causes you to focus on the negative.
    • 2. Social media can lead to depression and anxiety.
    • 3. Social media can cause you to become addicted.
    • 4. Social media can cause you to develop an inflated sense of self.
    • 5. Social media can cause you to lose touch with reality.

    Is social media bad for your mental health?

    • 1. Social media can cause you to compare yourself to others, which can lead to feelings of inadequacy.
    • 2. Social media can be a breeding ground for negative thoughts and feelings, such as jealousy, anger, and sadness.
    • 3. Social media can make you feel isolated from the real world and cause you to withdraw from face-to-face interactions.
    • 4. Social media can increase feelings of anxiety and depression.
    • 5. Social media can cause you to obsess over your appearance and give you a distorted view of your own body.
    • 6. Social media can lead to social isolation and loneliness.
    • 7. Social media can be addictive and can interfere with your work, school, and personal relationships.

    Read Also: What Percent Of Homeless Are Addicts

    What Is Considered Social Media Addiction

    • 1. Preoccupation with social media: feeling a constant need to check for new updates and notifications, even when it is not convenient or appropriate to do so.
    • 2. Withdrawal symptoms when not using social media: feeling anxious or irritable when unable to access social media platforms, or feeling restless and fidgety when trying to stay off them for a period of time.
    • 3. Unsuccessful attempts to cut back on social media use: despite trying to set limits on how much time is spent on social media, or even trying to give it up completely, the individual is unable to stick to these goals.
    • 4. sacrificing important activities in order to use social media: neglecting work, school, or family obligations in order to spend more time on social media platforms.
    • 5. using social media in dangerous or risky situations: continuing to use social media despite knowing that it could lead to negative consequences, such as getting in a car accident while texting.
    • 6. Lying about social media use: hiding how much time is actually spent on social media or the extent of ones online activity from others.

    How Can I Help My Teen With Social Media Addiction

    Help them with effective coping mechanisms when used as a way to cope with sadness, social media can quickly negatively affect a teen and leave them feeling even more empty, or envious, or frustrated. Effective coping mechanisms should help a teen overcome or adapt to their troubles, rather than providing escapism. Hobbies that help a teen improve themselves mentally or physically, meditation and spiritual activities, long walks alone or time spent with a therapist these are methods that help a person effectively cope with issues by becoming outlets for stress and helping them find a healthy perspective with which to tackle their problems.

    Manage their screen time the internet should be used as a tool, with online media as a source of entertainment or information. But when online media becomes what your teen preoccupies themselves with at almost every hour of the day, they become simply unable to think about, or focus, on anything else. How is a person expected to do anything in the real world when their hands and thoughts are on screens and online? As intertwined as our lives have become with the internet, many teens struggle to balance that with the responsibilities and challenges of living. Managing a teens screen time and encouraging them to do so on their own, for their own health and future, is critical.

    You May Like: Can You Get Addicted To Nicotine Gum

    - Advertisement - spot_img
    Popular Articles
    Related news