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Reclaim Your Time with a Social Media Detox


Renee Rai

Unleash Productivity Potential with a Social Media Detox

In the ever-connected digital age, people across the world are finding themselves addicted to social media.

Social Media Detox – Art by

How often do you pick up your phone to do one thing but end up scrolling through social media? 

Before you realise that you’re distracted, hours have already gone by. 

According to a recent report by Hootsuite, people spend an average of 2 hours and 28 minutes on social networks.

From deciding which pictures to upload on Facebook to getting stuck in the non-stop scroll of Instagram reels or YouTube shorts or even getting entangled in a heated debate on a Twitter thread, there’s no end to time-consuming distractions on social media.

To Prioritise vital tasks and fight the urge to go online, embrace the power of social media detox. 

What is a Social Media Detox?

A social media detox is intentionally taking a break from social media for a given period. Depending on the individual and their will, it could be as long as a day, a week or a month.

Social media addiction is a serious problem that calls for serious measures.

Suddenly taking a step back from the virtual realm is not easy. Let’s go over ways to achieve a detox that ensures results.

How to? The right way to social media detox.

Set clear goals

Be clear with your intentions. Write down the specific reasons you want to take a break. Whether to improve focus, achieve work-life balance, or promote mindfulness in your daily routine, well-thought-out objectives provide a sense of direction towards your goal.

Decide on the duration of the detox. Your objectives will help determine whether you want to take a short or long-term break. For instance, an extended absence will make more sense if the intention is to make a lifestyle change. 

Juggling between the different social media platforms is addictive as you feel the need to keep updated with the feeds. So asses your online behaviour and decide the platforms you’ll abstain from.

Accountability partner

Tell people in your online circles about your decision to go offline. Doing so would keep you accountable for your actions. It would be better if you got somebody on board with social media detox.

Remove applications 

You know that your body automatically reaches for your phone even when you have nothing specific to do. It is easy to lose track of time once you start scrolling. So remove those applications from your device to minimise temptation. Use website blockers on your laptops.

Turn off notifications for the ones that you may want to keep. The purpose of the notification bell is to grab your attention. By turning off notifications, you are taking back control. Because now you’ll check your phone only when you want to. 

Set time limits

While deleting your social media apps, install one that facilitates timing your usage on other applications. As the goal is to save time and improve focus, ensure that your screen time doesn’t shift to other existing apps on your device.

Separate personal and professional accounts

As businesses double down on leveraging the potential of social media marketing, there’s increasing pressure to build a personal brand online in 2023.

It is advisable to have separate personal and professional accounts. It is hard to completely cut off social media usage as you have to show up for your professional needs. 

Replace screentime with worthwhile activities.

The time spent on mindless scrolling could be put to better use. Whether working or working out, reading or sleeping, take charge of time with activities you previously didn’t have time for.

Invest in a clock

The first few things you do in the morning set the rhythm for the rest of the day. So be mindful of your morning routine. Put a clock right where it is visible from your bed. Invest in an alarm clock to avoid waking up with a mobile in your hand.

Practice mindfulness

Tech companies work with the best behavioural psychologist and designers to build addiction for you. The business model of social media companies entirely relies on your attention, and their revenue is driven by keeping you engaged for longer.

With our interests in the online world, our brain starts associating social media activities with pleasure and releases dopamine. 

Dopamine is a chemical associated with feelings of pleasure and reward. 

Understanding the reason behind addiction is the first step towards improvement. To reap the benefits of social media detox, you need to approach it mindfully. 

Observe your behavioural patterns with social media and work on them. For instance, keep your mobile away to deactivate the autopilot urge to open your phone. If reading the news is stressing you out, then go on and subscribe to specific newsletters. 

You choose.

Social media affects your mental health by pushing content that makes you take a side. Polarisation is a problem that the whole world is grappling with. People are basing their judgement on half-cooked stories and biased opinions.

Therefore, become the person who controls the influx of information they want. Choose reliable sources of information and better entertainment. 

Every measure you’ve taken so far is to improve the quality of your life. Hyper-connectivity may make us feel like we’re missing out on something. Understand that there is nothing more important than missing out on real life. 

So get on with the first step that frees you of the shackles of the digital world and embark upon the journey to improved productivity and a fulfilled life.

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