Makarand Utpat

7 sure-fire ways to social media detox and enjoy your life again

There is no denying that the social media has become an inseparable part of our lives.

Interacting face-to-face or calling someone and talking to them (like we used to) is becoming thing of the past… we are taking comfort in communicating our thoughts and feelings through emojis, likes, virtual comments and shares.

In my previous blog Life without Social Media: Is it Nirvana? Are we Ready?, I covered fascinating takeaways of Dr Cal Newport, (watch his TEDx speech), a scientist and author of 5 books, who does not have a social media account and still able to operate productively.

Looking at the upcoming market trends, I feel that that may be an extreme scenario to consider not to co-exist with social media account (s).

I am not saying impossible but I’d say it’s a difficult proposition.

However, I believe there is way to achieve best of the both worlds. In this blog, I will cover my 7 sure-fire tips that will enable you to achieve best of the both worlds.

I.e. you can not only enjoy social media like the way you would like to but at the same time have a peace of mind.

But before I get into it, here are few questions for you… Are you finding yourself getting enamored with things such as:

How many likes am I getting? 

How many comments and likes my friends are getting? 

How do my posts fare against my friend’s posts?

I will delete my post if I get less than 20 likes.

Why do people like my friend’s posts and not mine? Am I not liked anymore?

I will do Tit-for-Tat. E.g. I’ll reciprocate with a “Like” only if my friend “Like”s my post.

Finding yourself getting spammed or is the photographic lives of others making your nervous?

Needlessly scrolling down and checking for social media updates?

The list goes on and on.

Are you getting exhausted or fatigued?

Or are these things making you feel segregated or excluded with the social media that was supposed to connect you with other friends and family?

Well, you are not alone. We are all drowning in the sea of messages, posts, updates.

Let’s all remember that social media has been created for us and not vice versa. Never forget that social media is a tool, a technology and that you are always in control.

However, I find that most people get consumed by it, get drifted, and lose all the power that they hold in themselves.

Here are my 7 tips to detox and cleanse your social media usage. Essentially, it boils down to you becoming deliberate.

With a discipline, you can add method to the madness:

1)Eliminate Distractions- In order to accomplish your daily tasks in an efficient and productive manner, you need to create an undivided attention for yourself. So, turn off social media notifications, emails, or log out of your accounts completely. In few cases, I know of people who have completely ripped off their social media apps from their phones.

2)Resist The Urge to Check Messages Frequently- Open the social media feeds only during certain time of the day, for example, in the evening, while commuting, in the bathroom, or during lunch time.

3)Apply Time Management- Set up an alarm clock, if you have to, to manage your time. It’s easy to get distracted and drifted so allocate a fixed duration. For example, 20-30min-per-day.

4)Distract Your Attention Deliberately- Do activities that clear up your mind. E.g. going for a quick walk, listening to music, taking a shower, doing exercise or yoga.

5)Think twice before posting your social media updates. Be selective of what you post. For example, do not post about every little activity. Don’t give in to the temptations of the ego battles or rivalry of matching number of your posts with your friends.

6)Do Not Get Involved in Virtual Litter- There is lot of going on in the virtual world. Avoid back-and-forth heated responses. Stay away from virtual litter, arguments, spamming and bullying. It results into nothing but the waste of time and doesn’t lead to any kind of fruitful outcomes.

7)Know When to Respond Offline vs Online- If your friend posts anniversary update or major life changing event, instead of commenting, you may be better off picking up the phone and talking to them. They will certainly appreciate this gesture and glad that you are going extra mile to call them. i.e. use proper judgement.

Let me know how are you handling your social media detox and let me know if I am missing out anything. I’d love to learn from you.

To your success!

Makarand Utpat