Social Media Detox
Ridhi Golechha

Ridhi Golechha

Jun 13Mental Health

Social Media Detox

Social media is an interactive technology that helps us connect with people, build networks, and share thoughts and ideas. It is the quickest and easiest way to get in touch with people.

However, lately, social media has been triggering anxiety and other mental health issues in people. Studies have found that, until now, the biggest competitor of social media was sleep. Yes, you read that right! However, with several tiny new inventions such as the ‘typing…’ sign, the ‘infinite scrolling’ feature, and the ‘autoplay’ option on YouTube, Netflix, etc., people have become habituated to staying on social media for longer periods of time because there is no visual end to it. According to research, in 2021, an average person spends about 2 hours 45 minutes or more on social media per day. What’s shocking is that this number has, in fact, doubled since 2012, resulting in what is now being called Social Media Anxiety Disorder (SMAD)

What is SMAD?

Social Media Anxiety Disorder is a syndrome caused by excessive social media usage and affects the mental and physical well-being of a person. The millennial slang FOMO, which stands for the ‘Fear of Missing Out, is a perfect example of social media anxiety. A popular example of FOMO can be seen in The Social Dilemma, a documentary by Jeff Orlowski. In the film, a mother locks up her children’s phones in a box that would not open until the timer expires. However, when one of the phones gets a notification, one of the children ends up breaking the box to see what it is. That is how fearful adolescents can be to miss out on notifications or updates from their peers.

How Can We Take Time Off Social Media?

Social media detox is extremely important today. Different people have different definitions of taking time off social media and that is completely okay! For instance, a full-time influencer or a public figure will only consider practising detox for a day or so, because their livelihood depends on it. However, other people might extend their social media detox to months or even years. We must all do a social media detox to maintain a healthy balance between social media and real life. It helps us gain control of how much time we spend on these platforms. Here are a few tips that can come in handy if you are trying to detox:

1. Give your digital devices a bedtime: There are multiple third-party applications like Social Fever, Offtime, Freedom, etc., that track your daily usage of social media applications. Install one of these applications and manage your time better.

2. Start a new morning ritual: We often tend to check our phones first thing in the morning. Instead, try habituating yourself to drinking water or meditating, first thing in the morning.

3. Utilize your free time: Instead of scrolling through Instagram in your free time, try replacing it with another activity such as spending time with family or listening to an educational podcast or even taking a nap for that matter. Mindless consumption of content on social media platforms is also harmful. Be mindful of what content you consume and make sure it helps you grow.

It is also completely normal to have relapses while you’re in the process of social media detox. So, don’t be too hard on yourself if you do so. Instead, you might want to start by observing these relapses and slowly bringing your attention back to your daily routine. You can also set some time aside in the day to go through your accounts, messages, and e-mails, in case you feel anxious about missing out on something important.

social media detox

Social Media Trends Are What the Cool Kids Are Doing Today.

Wondering how to hop off this train?

Social media trends have taken the internet by storm, especially during Covid 19. Everyone, from teenagers to the older generation, is having a go at social media trends. Have you wondered why that is?

1. Following trends means putting in less time to think of original ideas.

2. We also don’t like to be wrong and if something is trending, it must be right, right? This is known as mob mentality.

3. Following the crowd or being a part of it, also gives us a sense of belonging which is comforting enough to carry on instead of being the odd one out or taking the risk of trying something new.

4. ‘Who did it better?!’ People are also motivated to prove that they can do it better and receive validation.

Let’s talk about getting rid of excessive social media indulgence using these important steps:

1. Rule of thirds: The rule of thirds tells you exactly what and how much you should share on various social media platforms. 1/3rd should promote your business/art and make a profit off of it. Another 1/3rd should include content curation, sharing ideas, observing more experienced people, etc. The final 1/3rd must include follower engagement and building your personal brand. Therefore, to balance your posts and the time you give to social media, you can try adapting to this.

2. Set a timer on your phone: Setting a timer either on your phone or multiple applications will help immensely. There are a few third-party apps like Social Fever, Offtime, Freedom, etc., to help you monitor your time on your phone.

3. Avoid doom-scrolling: When you find yourself reaching for your phone, take a second to address what the reason is. For instance, after sending that email, if you casually open Facebook and start scrolling mindlessly, correct yourself immediately.

We have experienced a major shift in the dynamics of social media usage during the pandemic. Be it teenagers or adults, everyone is glued to their devices for most of the day. Doom-scrolling has become a major issue and every day, the number of anxious and/or depressed people is increasing. Therefore, social media detox is required now more than ever. So, let’s do the needful and bring balance to our lives.

We at Proactive aim at creating a world-class medical experience for Indian women and adopt gold standards in every healthcare initiative whether it’s a teleconsultation or a webinar. What sets us apart from the rest is our liberal, convenient, and holistic approach to healthcare.

Disclaimer: This information is educational and should not be construed as medical advice. Please consult your doctor before making any dietary changes or adding supplements.

Proactive For Her is a digital clinic for women, offering accessible, personalised, and confidential healthcare solutions. We offer out-patient care, diagnostic services and programs for various health concerns of Indian women, across their lifetime - from puberty to pregnancy to menopause.