Are you taking a break from social media? Here are some mistakes you should avoid to make your “detox” as beneficial as possible.
Whether social media is good or bad depends primarily on how you use it. That is why many people have the habit of “detoxing”, i.e. taking a break and moving away from social media for a few weeks or months. Some are even capable of doing so for over a year.
If you have been using the apps in question for years without really taking a step back, it is time to reconnect with yourself and think about how to use the Internet and social media more consciously. However, people make several mistakes during this process. Adopting another bad habit to replace pointless scrolling is one of the common mistakes. Another pitfall is not thinking about how to reintroduce social media into your life in a healthy way.
In the following text, we will point out four common mistakes and how to avoid them. So, let us start in order.
Table of Contents
# 1 Too Much Focus on Just Stopping to Use Social Networks
Getting away from social media is a good starting point, but the challenge just begins there. Realizing how many people are active on platforms like Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram, it is easy to want detox to become part of your personality. However, this is where many people go wrong. Instead of enjoying a healthier relationship with the Internet and improving their quality of life, it is all about focusing solely on quitting social media, which is something that appears too easy.
Instead of endlessly scrolling through your Facebook and Instagram feed, you should rather watch YouTube videos about people who stopped using social networks and what benefits they got from it. Once you understand the basic message of the videos in question, consuming such content becomes a waste of time. Thinking more about social media also means you are more likely to reactivate your accounts before you have reaped the benefits of detox.
Solution: Work something else into your schedule.
You should use your time away from social media to rediscover your hobbies or – if you already know what you love to do – spend more time doing it. Making more time for friends and family is another meaningful way to do things that will be fulfilling in the long run.
Simple changes and adjustments to things you already have in your schedule can also help. If you like to go for a walk, then walk more. If you like to exercise, spend more time in the gym or running outside. Or, in the evening, you better go to bed earlier and get some sleep instead of looking at the “blue light” of your cell phone screen. At the end of the day, if you cannot sleep, reach for the book that has been sitting by your bed for months, and you could not find time to read it.
# 2 Replacing One Bad Habit with Another
If you are taking a break from social media to reassess your social media usage, you need to be careful not to make the mistake of replacing one bad habit with another.
While you may no longer be spending three or more hours a day on, say, Instagram, it is very easy to get distracted by another bad habit. For example, you might replace the time you spend on social media with reading toxic news or checking email more often than necessary.
Solution: Find useful substitutes (and use website blockers).
As with the first mistake, replacing your social media time with a meaningful project is a good idea. For example, with two extra hours a day, you could start the blog or podcast you have always wanted to make: for example, share your knowledge about NBA title favorites and MVP contenders, types of transactions for which blockchain-based operating systems can be used without high fees (Tron online casinos at Topcasinoexpert.com/paymentsystems/tron/, Coinsbee, Alternative Airlines, etc.), or playing latest video games – all of which constitute as very popular podcast topics right now. Getting outside and exploring your surroundings can also improve your quality of life outside of social media.
Disconnecting from social media gets easier with time, but you may need a little extra help in the beginning. Using one of the website blockers can help you stop wasting your time online.
# 3 You Haven’t Deactivated User Accounts
You can technically detox from social media – or take a break – simply by logging out of your user accounts and deleting apps from your phone.
That may work for some people, but if you are like many, you might find it hard not to think about something unless you break up with them completely. After all, how many times have you deleted social media apps from your phone only to download them again a few hours later?
Solution: Deactivate your accounts completely.
Most people would benefit from completely deactivating their social media accounts during a detox.
If your business requires you to use social media (i.e. you make money from social media), you may not be able to deactivate your accounts. In such cases, try to make your phone less distracting while you work and set yourself strict limits.
# 4 Don’t Think About How One Day You’ll Include Social Media in Your Life Again
Getting away from social media is helpful to give yourself space to think. But if you later reactivate your accounts and do the same things that made you want to take a break in the first place, your efforts end up being pointless. One of the biggest mistakes people make is to stop using social media for a while, but they do not think about how they will change their habits one day when they reactivate it again.
If you do not think about what you want to change about your social media usage, you will find yourself in an endless cycle of feeling meaningless when using these apps.
When you step away from social networks, it is good to do some serious thinking about them. Here are some questions to get you started:
- What didn’t I like about my previous use of social media?
- Are there any triggers that made me spend more time online than I wanted to?
- What do I want to achieve with my use of social media (e.g., keeping in touch with friends and family when I live abroad)?
- How can I prevent myself from making the same mistakes that led me to an unhealthy relationship with social media?
It is not a bad idea to write down these answers somewhere in your notes and remind yourself of them from time to time. Generally, social networks are not bad, but if they take up too much of your time and you have no use for them, then they are pointless. Do not worry, you are not alone in this, many of us make the same mistakes.
Detox Isn’t a Permanent Solution (At Least for Most)
A social media detox is not a permanent solution, and you should use your break to reflect on your past use and what you want to change about it. Focusing on other things that bring you joy is a good start to ensure you do not trade one bad habit for another.
Noting how you want to change your social media usage will also make it easier to track the pattern later. It is also worth considering streamlining your social media presence and deciding which apps really add value to your life and which don’t.