How to be Connected but not Addicted to Social Media

Your Addiction is Helping Marketers

Digital marketers are now prying into your personal life.

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Holly playing with a toy

The TED Talk “The Curly Fry Conundrum: Why social media “likes” say more than you think” by Jennifer Golbeck explains how social media marketers are collecting data about your online activities. For example, they can now infer how smart you are depending on what you ‘Like’ on Facebook. If you like Twilight on Facebook, you may not be that smart (I’m joking! Or am I?).

Marketers around the world have so much data to play with, and it’s all because of your addiction. Although everyone’s addiction will help us in the workplace when we start playing with data, we also need to take a step back from the internet and smell the fresh air so to speak. Follow the example of my sister’s Dalmatian Holly to the right.

Keep reading to find out the real problems with being addicted to the internet and social media.

Problems with Your Addiction to the Internet

Are you Addicted to Social Media? (c) IFB

Are you Addicted to Social Media? (c) IFB

1. You’re less connected with your friends and family in real life:

Your addiction to the internet links to less participation in offline activities according to Espinoza and Juvonen’s 2011 study. When you feel bored, you can easily fill up your time by scrolling through your news feed instead of spending that time with your family dog.

Personally, I used to be addicted to the internet from 2008-2011. I played an online role-playing game called Impressive Title and I would easily spend up to 6 hours a day playing this game. When I wasn’t playing the game, I was instant messaging the friends I made from said game.

It was only when I went to Thailand in 2011 that I realized how amazing life can be when you spend time off the internet. All the amazing activities, the enjoyment, the thrill and the connections made with my siblings were much more memorable than this game.

What have you been addicted to? Let me know in the comments?

2. Looking down at your phone is causing you health problems

(c) Ed Yourdon

(c) Ed Yourdon

Did you know looking down at your phone at a 60 degree angle is the same as a 27 kilogram weight on your neck? That’s equal to 10 house bricks on your neck! The more you do this, the more likely your muscles will wear and tear and degenerate. Instead, align your phone horizontally with your face, just how you would sit and stare straight at a computer screen.

3. Your sleep suffers

So apparently looking at screens for too long is bad for our sleep. We all know this, but how many of us actually listen to the advice of shutting off all technology an hour before sleep? The blue light from your iPhone and computer screen limits your body’s production of melatonin – your sleep regulating hormone. You won’t feel as tired as you should and sleep will be more difficult.

I always have this problem of lying in bed and not having sleep come to me. Normally I turn to my iPhone and listen to How Stuff Works podcasts under ‘Stuff Mom Never Told You”. After a while I get tired enough to shut off the two girls voices and go straight to sleep. So clearly I’m naughty and don’t listen to the scientists!

What’s your technique to go to sleep?

How to Still be Connected

1. Set yourself a time to browse social media

Do you set yourself a time to use social media?

Do you set yourself a time to use social media?

Perhaps give yourself 3 times a day you can scroll through your news feed. In the morning, in the afternoon and at night. Limit yourself to 5 minutes as well.

I find that by only using my iPhone, and not my computer for Facebook, I spend less time on Facebook. It is more difficult to load websites on my phone than it is a computer so I can’t be bothered.

2. Use it as a reward

Use a 15 minute social media browse as a reward for finishing your homework, cleaning your room or doing the dishes

3. Turn ON notificationsmail

Turning on notifications allows you to go about your daily work and not feel the need to constantly refresh your notification list. Whenever I get a personal message, my phone will tell me. I don’t feel the need to refresh my messages on Facebook as much because of this. The same goes for emails too.

Do you agree with this? Or do you leave your notifications off? If I get a message ‘ding’, I finish what I’m doing and then I reply as a reward. Positive reinforcement for the win!

Tell me, I want to know!

1. What have you been addicted to? A specific game? Flappy Bird? A book, a social media platform?

2. How do you help yourself fall asleep? Do you turn off technology or use technology to tire yourself out like me?

3. What are your methods of staying connected but not being addicted to the internet? Do you agree with my methods?

References:

Espinoza, G. and Juvonen, J. (2011), “The pervasiveness, connectedness and intrusiveness of social network sites”,Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking, Vol. 14 No. 12, pp. 705-709.

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28 thoughts on “How to be Connected but not Addicted to Social Media

  1. Interesting post moony :)! I have to agree that being on social media just before bed disrupts your sleep and I believe its important to put the phone away and spend real quality time with friends and family.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. moony27 says:

    Thanks for your post Liv 🙂 It does disrupt your sleep, but it doesn’t stop me from using social media before bed haha. I think my post helped to diagnose myself as addicted!

    Like

  3. Really interesting post!! I am definitely guilty of checking all my social media before I go to sleep (…and maybe when I wake up) but I’m trying to break out the habit because I agree it disrupts my sleep and keeps me awake for longer!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the comment :), you’re the same as me! A pattern helps make sleeping easier. I guess I might try 30 mins before bed saying good night to everyone then keep technology away. 1 hour? That’s impossible xD

      Like

  4. Guilty! I used to be absolutely addicted to The Sims when I was younger and I totally get the 6 hours a day thing… how awful?!

    I generally fall asleep pretty quickly but sometimes the things I have read in my newsfeed right before I go to sleep find their way into my dreams. Not ideal.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Kylah for your comment! Oh The Sims, I used to love that game. Yeah 6 hours can fly by so quickly when you’re addicted :/

      Hahaha oh wow, well you’d hope no creepy posts are put on Facebook before you go to sleep or you’ll have nightmares. I find that fascinating though, I haven’t had dreams related to my newsfeed before. Maybe my next post will be about social media dreaming.
      I’m off to read your blog =]

      Like

  5. A good read! I am really a social media addict and practically cant live without Instagram or Facebook. I have to check my Instagram and Facebook everytime before I sleep or first thing I do when I wake up.

    But sometimes I find that it does keep me more connected with my friends and family. Keeps me updated to their happenings and stuff but of course, usage within reason!

    My second post is up 🙂 Hope you’ll have a good read there https://digitalcrusaders.wordpress.com/2015/03/18/4-reasons-why-the-canadian-safe-school-network-nailed-their-anti-cyberbullying-campaign/

    Keep writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your post Estella! I agree, sometimes it does help you become connected, especially if your family lives far away. Personally, Facebook has allowed me to reconnect and meet up with so many past friends that I wouldn’t have without the medium. It’s just finding that balance which can be tough.

      I’ll check out your blog right now! =]

      Like

  6. Must admit, i’m guilty of pretty much everything on here. I often find myself spending hours (honestly, HOURS) scrolling between facebook, twitter, tumblr and youtube, and just switching social media platforms when one of them gets boring.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh wow I know what you mean. I’m curious though, what you find interesting on Twitter and Tumblr? I’ve tried them both but my attention keeps going back to Facebook and YT. Thanks for commenting 🙂

      Like

  7. Sez says:

    Yup I’m guilty of spending heaps of time on pretty much any social media – Fb, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, YT, you name it haha! I need to put my phone away (like in a different room away) before I got to bed, otherwise I’d probably never be able to go to sleep! too many distractions 😛 But yeah I guess you sort of have to give yourself a limit, or make social media a reward or something, to try and balance it with real life (eg. I can go on social media when I’m finished all my homework etc.).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your comment Sarah :)!! Oh you put your phone in another room? That’s probably healthy from all the potential waves that could come from the phone. I need my phone in my room because it’s my alarm haha.

      Like

  8. Great post! Personally I’d find it so hard to control my social media usage… I know it’s not exactly healthy but it’s come to a point where I don’t necessarily WANT to always go online, it’s more like I sort of HAVE to. And I’m sure I’m not the only one.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m the same, so is my sister. I get to a point where I get sick of all the FB messages and then suddenly stop replying to people and they wonder where I left to haha.
      I love camping; everyone is away from it and you don’t feel the need to go on social media.

      Liked by 1 person

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