I have a love-hate relationship with social media and I know I'm not the only one. It brought us so much convenience over the decades and has enhanced our careers and our relationships. We really do owe a lot to social media. However...let's face it, we all get too addicted sometimes. It's not hard to get invested into social media, but sometimes it's super healthy and beneficial to take a step back.
After all, there's certainly nothing wrong with social media. In modern day society, it's almost vital to survive. But we want to make sure we are still living an authentic life to the fullest.
I've compiled a list of my favorite techniques and divided them into days of the week for your convenience. After a week of practicing these, you will without a doubt notice a change in your habits.
When you wake up, don't check your phone immediately. Get out of bed, have breakfast, get ready, and then you can check it. But it shouldn't be the first thing you see in the morning. When you start your day in a virtual world, the rest of your day is probably going to continue in that world.
Post something to one of your social media pages and don't check it after. Just post it. Don't refresh to see who commented your photo and how many likes you have. Just post for once without overdoing it.
Today, when you use the internet, use it to read interesting articles and current events. Email important people. Make a positive change. Spend more time working and less time playing.
If you find yourself in public with nothing to do, DON'T go on your phone. Read a magazine, observe the world around you, or just talk to the person next to you. But don't go on that phone just because you have a few seconds alone and you don't want to look awkward. Keep in mind this whole "everyone has a smartphone on them 24/7" phenomenon is somewhat new.
Wore a cute outfit today? Got a soy vanilla latte from Starbucks? Something interesting happen to you? Resist the urge to post about it. Instead, tell someone about your experience. Go out and show your outfit to people. Tell the barista how much you loved the latte. Not posting about it helps us learn about things that actually happened and things actually have significance to you regardless if you posted about it or not.
When you are out with friends or family, don't look at your phone. Unless you are getting an important call, you shouldn't be even glancing at your phone for a second. Enjoy the moment. As a reward, when you get ready to go to bed tonight you are free to look at your phone or go on your computer, but not in bed. Using technology in bed makes it harder for us to fall asleep and produces bad habits.
Today, don't use social media at all. Do something special.
----------------------------After this one full week of approaching social media and technology differently, decide what habits you're going to leave behind and which habits you want to take with you. My personal favorite exercise is Thursday. I think a lot of the time when we find ourselves in public with nothing to do, we immediately go to our phones because that's what the majority of other people are doing. We don't want to find ourselves in awkward conversations and we want to avoid human contact. However, I think when I resist the urge to pull out my phone, I am fighting the inevitable social media addiction most of us have. I am making the choice to live my life in the present.