Unfortunately, social networking sites can be a waste of time if you don’t monitor how much time you spend on them. Millions of people spend hours on social media per day! Spending so much time on something that doesn’t have any return on investment can really affect the quality of your life.
Taking a break from social media is a great way to reconnect with the people and activities that really motivate you. Before logging off, identify why you wish to take a break. Select the duration of the break, the networks you want to temporarily abandon, and develop a schedule for reducing your social media use.
To help you sustain your break, turn off social media notifications or delete the apps entirely. Use the time you’d otherwise be on social media to read, exercise, and spend time with your friends and family. If you spend more time on social media websites than you would like, here are tips on how to quit social media:
- Decide how long you want to take a break from social media. There’s no right or wrong period of time you should spend off of social media. The choice is entirely yours. You could choose to spend 24 hours off of social media, or you might spend 30 days off social media
- Choose when to take a break. The best time to take a break from social media is during family vacations and holidays. This will give you and your family the opportunity to spend time each other in conversation rather than engaging in social media exchanges. But you might also take a break from social media if you need to commit all your attention to someone or something.
- Choose the networks you want to take a break from. Taking a social media break could mean a cessation of all social media use, or it could mean taking a break only from certain networks. For instance, perhaps you temporarily quit Facebook and Twitter, but stay on Instagram. There are no right or wrong ways to choose the networks you wish to take a break from. A good way to start the selection process, though, is to think about your reasons for desiring a social media break, and then take a break from the network or networks that will most directly allow you to achieve those goals.
- Deactivate your account. For instance, if you typically access social media on your phone, delete the apps from your phone. If you tend to use social media on your computer, keep your computer turned off for the duration of your break from social media. A less extreme alternative is to simply turn off social media notifications on your device of choice so that you are not tempted to look.
- Distract yourself: There will probably be a few days where you really miss being on social media. But after a time, you’ll begin to feel the urge to use social media decline. There are several ways to avoid temptation and temporary depression. For instance, you could see a movie with a friend, read a book or take up a new hobby or you could download a free news app.
- Connect with your friends outside of social media: Social media is not the only way to stay in contact with people. Instead of getting updates about what your friends are up to via social media, give them a call or send them an email or text message. Ask them if they would like to hang out
- Write: Have you ever had thoughts that exceeded more than 140 characters? A great way to let everything out without limiting yourself or offending anyone else is by keeping a diary. It’s private, safe, you don’t have to censor yourself and you can write as much as you want whenever you want without worrying about who will see.
- Meet new people. Without the constant instinct to check social media, you’ll be more engaged in the world around you. Strike up a conversation with your seatmate on the bus. You could also get involved in your community; look up local charities or nonprofit organizations that offer volunteer opportunities.
- Take care of business. Use time that you’d otherwise devote to browsing social media to reply to your other correspondence. Get started on school or work projects. If you work from home, use social media time to locate new clients or revenue streams.