.Awakening - Social Media - De-addiction
We only talked bad things about the Social Media on the previous page. Funnily, this page (on de-addiction) is shorter than the page on ill-effects 😊
And that's because the work required from our side is just a little. It isn't difficult to de-addict yourself. A lot of time and energy goes into thinking whether one really NEEDS TO or CAN do it.
As we move ahead, Social Media is only going to GROW. It may take different forms, but it is like that lab experiment resulting into an uncontrollable Zombie mutation. Quitting would be like alienating, and, although, it is a fantastic choice for many, this article focuses on de-addiction.
EVERYTHING written on this page is COMPLETELY and SOLELY based on my personal experience!
Let's get straight to it.
|Set a Schedule [...]|
|Focus on the Technicalities [...]|
|Change Your Source of Inspiration [...]|
|Stop Caring about Growth [...]|
|Your Offline Achievements [...]|
|Practice Staying Away [...]|
Set a Schedule
Check / Post
Whether to check others' posts or to post something yourself, set a Schedule. For example, I used to post at 9 am, but that used to stress me out right in the beginning of the day. That is why I decided to post at 4 pm (my other favorite time of the day). This gave me a lot of time and space to think through.
Visit the App only to post something. Not to scroll mindlessly. Post, and Quit.
You do NOT need to follow all of those Instagram Gurus on YouTube who make videos for Views and Likes. You do NOT need to post when your followers are active. Post when YOU feel like posting.
Now, you may FEEL LIKE posting everyday, but what I mean is - give yourself more importance than Social Media, because it is supposed to be just a 10% part of your life.
the less is stresses you out.
Also keep a close eye on the amount of time spent on these Apps. The moment it goes beyond a desired limit, just close all of it. Hey, you will live another day. You can go back to the App tomorrow. It is like how your parents allowed you to play Games for just an hour or two. Be disciplined.
The Social Media creates a lot of noise in your Mind.
A noisy Mind cannot manifest properly.
This is how Social Media destroys your Life.
You won't die if you plan to check your notifications only ONCE A DAY. The people sending you those notifications will also not die if you plan to reply to their comments a couple of hours later! You have to decide how much time and energy (and your precious life) you want to spend (or waste) on Instagram.
Avoid Getting Into Cycles
This should be self-explanatory by now. Avoid getting into those Think About Your Next Post → Post → Check Performance → Think About Your Next Post cycles. Just stay above all of that.
The point is - Feeling the same, but doing something different.
Focus on the Technicalities
You go back again and again to check your Insights / Post Performance. However, what I have figured out for myself is - when my PRIMARY FOCUS is on how a Photo / Video IS (and not its performance after posting it), it works for me, because my role ends at the point when I put it out there.
Don't care about the Rest.
My work is to click a good photo or make a nice dance video by putting in 100% of my Energy, and as long as I am honest and pure about the CREATION part - not that the fruit doesn't matter, but - I don't care about the rest.
Change Your Source of Inspiration
As I mentioned on the previous page,
For example, being aware that there are Happy Same-sex Couples in India is good, but - as a 40-year-old Single, for example (or worse, as a 20-year-old Single) - constantly coming across their videos kissing each other or celebrating Valentine's Day may keep you stuck in life - stuck either in a sad mode or in a rebellious mode or in a mode of non-trying - THIS IS DEEP.
Having a crush on one or two or three people is fine. Constantly coming across cute faces on the endless feed of the bottomless Instagram pit is over-consumption of information, and that can cause a Mental Blast
You get to LEARN A LOT from the Social Media (about places to go to, about the things that you can do, etc.), but that is all that you need to know. That much is enough.
Beyond a point, it begins to generate stress and anxiety.
An explorer can never stop exploring. A scientist can never stop experimenting. However, a Social Media addict can surely REDUCE his / her usage of the Social Media.
Just as with Casual Sex, the more you keep doing it, the more people you keep finding. There's never an end to it, because there are millions available for you. You have to decide to stop somewhere!
Similarly, on an App like Instagram, there are a variety of things that you can do! The more variety you keep bringing in, the more Instagram encourages you to do it (by giving you Views / Likes once, and not giving them another time, making you judge / demean / doubt yourself - this is how it plays with your mind). There is no end to the Creation Process.
the more depressed you feel.
Scarcity increases (perceived) value. Keep that in Mind from the perspective of your online activities. These are the times of Over-sharing and Over-expressing. Way more Communication is happening than it should.
forward to your posts. Let them not feel that
he / she is all over the place.
Stop Caring about Growth
Creative people like you and me would care about growth. As soon as an app like Instagram identifies that, they will start doing everything to NOT give it to you. This would be done in a very smart way, so as to keep you hooked a creative person like you to the app for a longer time. That's their business, but what about your well-being and mental health?
There have been several occasions when I've felt cranky and frustrated about not seeing the desired reach / growth on Facebook / TikTok / Instagram / (sometimes on) YouTube. However, I have to give it to YouTube - that platform seems / feels FAIR.
and this is my confession - I've vented out that frustration on my mother / family. We don't want to go into that mode. We have to transcend these feelings, and STAY in the AWARENESS that WE (and our happiness, and our lives, and our well-being) are ABOVE these apps.
on your Social Media accounts.
You don't have to show (through your actions and activities) on Instagram (for example) that you're desperate for Growth / Traction. In fact, show (through your usage of the app) that you don't care. And ACTUALLY don't care! 😊
To do that - only use the apps when you're genuinely using it to serve the purpose with which you joined them. For example, even if you have decided to go through your non-followers' stories (through Instagram's Browse page, for example) with the intention to reach out to new eyeballs, let that be a focused, intentional action.
to trap your Mind. You have to be smarter.
Fake it till you make it only means that - you have to NOT CARE about GROWTH on Instagram (for example), even if Instagram IS giving you Growth right now as you're reading this. That's how your activities should be.
Your Offline Achievements
Social Media is (and is supposed to) be your life's Digital Representation. Not your life's primary purpose (unless you earn your bread and butter there - we are NOT talking about employees or the Unfortunate Chosen Ones here).
That will automatically reflect Online.
Your primary and unequivocal focus should be (and must be) on your REAL LIFE. This includes connecting with real human beings. I know that it may be easier said than done for some of you, but you have to do it to see how wonderful it feels.
Don't go there FOR your dopamine.
Don't let Instagram be responsible for even 0.0001% of the dopamine that is secreted inside of you. Let your Offline Achivements do that.
I want to mention some very very wise words by Seth Godin from his blog post:
When your ideas are spreading, when your work is remarkable, when your organization has built a social ratchet that works, one of the side effects will be a significant social media presence. People will talk about you in ways that they like to talk... online.
On the other hand, if you spend all your time beginning at the end, grooming your social network, tweezing your Insta posts, hyping your tweets - nothing much is going to happen.
The simple proof of this is that brands with ten or twenty times the social media impact almost never have ten or twenty times as many people working as "social media specialists."
And worth noting: The Mona Lisa has a huge social media presence. Her picture is everywhere. But she doesn’t tweet. She’s big on social media because she’s an icon, but she’s not an icon because she’s big on social media.
The narrative of social media grooming is a seductive one, but it’s as much of a dead end as spending an extra hour picking out which tie to wear before giving a speech.
Practice Staying Away
In order to do something, you need to DO IT. Not just keep thinking about it.
- Start with fixing a time when you'll use it
- Then one day decide to be completely away
- Then another day decide to be away for 2-3 days
- Log out at first. Uninstall as you move ahead.
- Give yourself Perks for staying away!
When not using the Social Media, tell yourself in advance that it is okay to miss it / get bored / get annoyed, and that you (your mind) will automatically look for alternatives. Do everything to keep yourself entertained for a few days.
The point is - Feeling the same, but doing something different. Just do it and see how it feels, and you'll be surprised.
If you want to lead a healthy, quality life, reduce your Social Media usage, because it is indirectly proportional to your Happiness Level.
This one should be obvious. The SOLE reason why I follow 0 people on the Social Media (despite liking many of them) is that I use the Apps only to post my creations. That's my purpose, and I'm staying true to it.
Some people follow 2,500+ others. How on earth do they manage keeping up with their posts? Even 50 Followings are too many, but, of course, the number varies from person to person.
If you'd like to get in touch or discuss about this, feel free to book a 1:1 Interaction.