When Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites first hit the scene, people were transfixed, and the fascination has not gone away. While there have been some shifts in the social media landscape, the population of Facebook users remains larger than the population of entire countries, and everyone from celebrities to presidents are sharing their opinions 280 characters at a time.
If you are one of the legions of social media users, you may have noticed how much of your life is being lived online. And while social media sites allow people to connect to one another in new and interesting ways, social media addiction can actually harm relationships.
If you are spending more time than you would like on social media, it may be time to do something about it. Here are some simple and effective steps you can take to take back control of your life and break your social media addiction.
Delete Social Media Apps from Your Devices
If you are spending more time with your Facebook friends than your real life ones, the smartphone in your pocket could be to blame. It is easy to spend hours scrolling through your Facebook feed or checking your Twitter messages when those things are as close as your phone screen.
It is much harder to sustain a social media addiction when you are offline for much of the day. So do yourself a favor and delete those social media apps from your phone. You can always catch up on the feeds when you get home.
Turn Off Notifications
If you cannot bear to delete Facebook, Twitter and other social media apps from your phone, at least turn off your notifications. Those social media notifications only feed your addiction, and they can get pretty intrusive if you let them.
You can still check your social media sites, but try to limit how much time you spend. If anything truly earth shattering happens, you will hear about it from the people in your real world network of friends, without the use of social media.
Explore the Real World
Social media is a wonderful supplement to the real world, but for many people it has become a replacement. If you find yourself spending all your time on social media, it is time to explore the world around you instead.
Take up a new hobby. Call an old friend on the telephone. Meet some colleagues for lunch. Whatever you do, spending more time in the pursuit of real world activities is one of the best ways to break a social media addiction.
Download a Social Media Tracking App
Until you know how much time you are spending on social media, it can be difficult to gauge the extent of your addiction. If you want a real wakeup call, just download a tracking app that reports on your social media usage.
Once you have that app on your phone, computer and other devices, you can work to reduce your social media usage. It may be tough in the beginning, but over time you can reduce your social media usage and finally break your addiction.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media sites have allowed people to connect across borders and enabled old friends to reunite across the years. At the same time, these sites have fostered some serious addictions, actually interfering with real world activities. If you want to enjoy the positive things social media has to offer while still avoiding the negatives, the tips listed above can help you break your addiction, so you can put your usage into perspective.