The world of social media is nothing less than a maze, where you enter once and find yourself going deep in the spiral. It is fascinating and captivating to a point where it attracts you spend more and more time on it, almost to a point where it turns to be addictive and hard to leave.
Recently, Netflix came up with a docudrama called ‘The Social Dilemma’, which focusses deeply on the advent of social media. As thought provoking and interesting as it seems, it is also extremely terrifying as it presents a narrative that makes you come in terms with the reality of dependency on social media.
According to calculated data in 2019, an average person spends 2 hours 22 minutes on social media. However, with a change in the conditions, the pandemic and the inevitable lockdown, it has drastically increased.
Here are 7 things you need to do if ‘The Social Dilemma’ was a reality check you were not ready for-
1. Consciously track your time on social media.
As odd as it may sound, your smartphone has the best ways to track your social media time. Download apps that set timers on your social media apps. Your smartphone has an inbuilt tracker of how much time you’re spending. Track your active hours and deduct them.
2. Stop waking up to your phone screen.
In an ideal situation, one should not check their phone before noon. However, since there are work requirements, start waking up early so that you have enough time to plan and centre your day and mind respectively.
3. Declutter your social media.
Start decluttering your social media. Look out for accounts you engage less with. Ask questions like do I need to follow this person? Is this account actually relevant in my life? Does it contribute to my dependency on social media? Declutter your account based on your answers.
4. Turn off the notifications.
Remember how Ivan Pavlov trained a dog to respond to a bell? Notifications work in the exact same manner. Every time the bell in your phone rings for a notification, checking your phone is an immediate response to that. In order to lessen the usage of social media, remove the bell which attracts you to it.
5. Choose hobbies which do not include your phone screens.
Before we fell in the deep well of social media and Instagram stories, the only stories we found were in the books. Start taking up hobbies which do not include your phone screens. Take up creative hobbies like painting, dancing and cooking which do not require usage of phones and also is an acquired skill.
6. Stop doom scrolling.
Social media presents you with the material its algorithm sets as per your liking and interests. Right from YouTube videos to Instagram explores, you are catered with information is calculates you’re interested in. It is easy to give in while scrolling and turning it into doom scrolling. Stop scrolling while giving into your interest spiral.
7. Replace HABIT with CHOICE.
Do not open your social media merely out of habit. CHOOSE to operate your account. Before opening the app, know what you want to check. Do not mindlessly open the account and give into doom scrolling. Consciously using your account will help you to un-glue your eye and keep you from losing your attention.
It is important to realise that Big Tech cannot be changed overnight. Social media plays a huge role in our day to day lives and sometimes, caters the brave realities. Therefore, do not focus on its complete eradication but, on how to regulate its usage. Start small.