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Do You Have A Social Media Addiction? Here's How To Break It

July 24, 2015 2 min read

There are many of us walking around out there, social media addicts. You sign onto Facebook for a second to check in and hours later, you're browsing the photos of a complete stranger. It happens, don't be ashamed. Unfortunately, that time is gone forever but here are a few things you can do to make sure you don't fall down the rabbit hole in the future: 1. Understand that you are being played. “Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter—they’ve all been designed to make you repeatedly use them and check back in,” says Levi Felix, the CEO of Digital Detox, a tech-free wellness retreat in Northern California. When you keep in mind that this technology is designed to keep you sitting there, you may be more inclined to set time limits. 2. Implement rules. Make a promise to yourself (right now!) to stay off social media during meals, when you are commuting and when you are in bed or the bathroom. 3. Buy an alarm clock. If you are using your phone for an alarm clock, this means the first thing you do everyday is stare at your screen. [bctt tweet="Do You Have A Social Media Addiction? Here's How To Break It"] 4. Sign off for a weekend. Two days isn't enough time to cure you of a habit. But, it is enough time to remind you how great life can be away from the screen. Taking a break unlocks creativity. “When distractions disappear, ideas come,” says Louise Gillespie-Smith, the founder of Create Yourself, a life-coaching company in the United Kingdom. 5. Check with purpose. Most of us meander around social media when we are bored. To avoid this, set a high bar for logging in. Ask yourself "do I have a specific reason for this?" If you can't come up with one, do something else instead. Something that will boost your mood. Call a friend. Read a book. 6. Be a tough editor. Before you post a status update or a picture, question your motive. Are you trying to show the world you are having fun? Have you already posted 20 pictures of your baby this morning? If the answer is yes, try chatting with a friend or texting the picture to your mom. You could also jot down your thoughts in a notebook, or if you’re somewhere lovely, sketch the spot. “I call this intra-gramming,” says Felix. “When you really process a place by staring at it, drawing it, and reflecting on it, you can create a long-term memory.” Posting a photo has the opposite effect: You stop thinking about your experience and start contemplating other people’s responses to it. 7. Respond off line. Did you just get a notification from Facebook that it is your friend's birthday? Skip the wall post and call instead. It is more meaningful to make a 'real' effort at communication. 8. Alter your settings. Disable alerts and delete addicting apps. Yes, you can live without Words With Friends. Do you have a social media addiction? Share with us in a comment.  

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