Social media has changed the world in a lot of positive ways. While many of us like to bemoan social media mainly for the fact that its causing us to communicate differently, theres no proof that its actually makingour connections any worse. In fact, surveys have shown that we actually report feeling more connected now than we did in the past, as our friends are only a status or photo posting away.
However, there are some drawbacks. While social media can make it easier for us to connect, thats not always a good thing. Many people suffer from stress associated with constant connectivity, especially those who utilize social media for work purposes. Social media can also facilitate bullying and have the effect of comparing ourselvesto others.
A lot of people have expressed a desire to disconnect a little bit from social media. Tuning down your use of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and the like doesnt have to mean getting rid of these networks entirely. Sometimes, for our own sanity, its best to give ourselves more time to really be alone with our thoughts. If youre interested in spending less time on social media, here are a few tips to help you do it.
Track the Amount of Time You SpendAlready
The first step toward dialing down your social media use is tracking the amount of time you spend on social networking sites. Add up every little moment you spend checking Facebook on your phone or answering a direct messageyoull quickly see that these things add up. Once youre aware of how much time youre spending online (and how youre spending it) you may be more inspired to cut back a little. And most importantly, youll know exactly where those cutbacks need to take place (been spending too much time reading political articles shared on Facebook, perhaps?).
This tip wont work for everyone, but if youre the kind of person who likes to post your status to multiple accounts (say, Twitter and Facebook), use an app like Hootsuite, Buffer or TweetDeck to make your posting more efficient. If youre OK with posting the same status to all your social media accounts, you can simply type it in once and post it to all of your accounts instantaneously, dramatically cutting down on the amount of times you need to open various apps and type in your content.
Delete Social Apps From Your Phone
If youre serious about cutting down your social media time, make it easier on yourself by deleting the apps from your phone. This way, youll only be able to use social media exactly when you intend towhen you sit down at your computer for exactly that purpose. No more intermittently checking Facebook while youre waiting in line at the grocery store.
Respond to Messages With a Phone Call
When friends send you direct messages or Facebook chats, get in the habit of giving them a phone call in response. This way, your conversation is likely to be a lot lengthier and deeper, and youll be able to hear more about what theyve been up to and whats going on in their lives. As a bonus, youll be spending that much less time on the social app itself.
Turn Off Notifications
Its hard to resist opening your Twitter app when theres a little red bubble telling you that someone has responded to your tweet. Turn off notifications on your phone so that you arent constantly checking the app to see whats up. Youll get all the information about whos responded when you open the app later on.
Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.