13 Tips for Doing a Social Media Detox
In today’s world, I think it’s safe to say that social media is a huge part of most everyone’s lives. We use it to update our loved ones, meet new friends, keep up with the trends, learn new things, and so much more! It’s truly how we stay connected with the world.
Social media has a lot of positive uses and attributes, but it can also very easily take over our lives. We’ve all been there— mindlessly scrolling for hours, ignoring those around us as we read the next post, getting caught up in new drama. When social media begins to waste our time, negatively affect our mental health, and cause problems in our relationships, then it may just be time to do a detox.
Not sure if you really need a social media detox? Check out my post 10 Signs Social Media Has Become an Idol in Your Life to learn some surprising ways social media may be negatively affecting you. Read it here!
Now let’s dig in to 13 tips that can help you successful do a social media detox!
When to Stop Using Social Media
1. Don’t check your phone until after your morning routine
If you don’t have one already, you should have some type of morning routine that is going to add value to you and give you the mindfulness and energy you need to start the day. And trust me when I say that social media shouldn’t be anywhere near it!
It’s really easy for us to immediately turn over after waking up and scroll social media while laying in bed or drinking a morning coffee. But make it a goal to no longer do that.
And if you’re really brave, don’t even look at your phone at all until your morning routine is finished and you’ve officially started your day!
2. Turn off your phone during your quiet time
I know a huge problem for me is the pesky notifications that distract me from the things I’m doing, including my quiet time with God. This had a become a normal thing unfortunately, so I just started putting my phone on ‘Do Not Disturb’ and placing it out of sight.
If you want, you can go as far to turn off your phone completely. Whatever works for you!
The point of this is to train ourselves to remember the real priorities again. Things like spending time with God are SO much more important than a social media post, but our addictions cloud our judgment. If you don’t give yourself the option to get distracted by turning off your phone, it’ll be a lot easier to avoid.
3. Limit yourself to posting only a certain amount per week
Sometimes we get caught up in the social media game and want to post constantly. Whether this is a Facebook status, a new Insta picture, or even daily stories, we can post a lot more than we realize.
Begin to limit yourself to only one or two posts per week. I know it may sound crazy right now, but trust me once you break the cycle, you won’t feel like you need to post so constantly anymore.
4. Take at least a 24 hour (or more!) break each weekend
This is one of my favorite things to do! Taking complete breaks from social media. An awesome way to do this is to take a full day (24 hours) off from all social media platforms you use (that includes posting, scrolling, looking at notifications, answering comments and DMs, etc.)
I recommend doing it on the weekend because this is when you’re probably relaxing and spending time with loved ones. But if you’d prefer a different day of the week, then do what works best for you!
5. Don’t check your phone when you’re around friends and family
Which leads us to the next point: Don’t check social media when you’re around your loved ones! Not only is it rude, but it can take away from the experience of actually bonding and enjoying time with your friends and family.
I’m so guilty of scrolling social media while someone I’m with is talking to me or trying to hang out, so I know how hard this can be to stop, especially if your loved one is doing the same exact thing.
However, the best way to stop this is to keep your phone in your purse or pocket and never even take it out. Your phone is not necessary to have out in the open.
6. Take a week (or even month-long) break!
Now this one might seem a little extreme to some, but if you really want to do a social media detox and break that addiction, I’d recommend going for a full break. You may want to start out with a week and see how it goes. But a full month could do you a lot of good!
If you’re going to do this, I’d recommend making some type of post to let your friends know so they don’t try to contact you through social media.
Sometimes the best way to knock a habit is to quit cold turkey. You’ll be surprised by how much you probably won’t miss it!
What You Should Do Instead
7. Start to incorporate other hobbies into your day-to-day life
If you’ve ever tried to cut down on the mindless scrolling you may have not had much luck because you started to get bored. Let’s be honest— a lot of times we check social media when we don’t have anything to do.
The best way to remedy this is to adopt some new hobbies!
Once I cut down on my social media time, I started to get back into the old hobbies that I used to enjoy like reading, baking, and writing! These might not be the hobbies you like, but find something that’s right for you and start to intentionally make time for it.
For example, I started baking a brand new recipe every weekend. It became something I started looking forward to, as well as my family (because they got to eat it!). It worked great because my relaxing Saturdays were no longer just me lounging on the couch looking at Facebook. It became my baking day.
Think back on hobbies you used to enjoy, even as a kid! Try some out and see if they’re still entertaining. And of course, try something new! Take these ideas for starters:
Go to your local library and picking up a new book
Use Youtube to learn how to crochet or knit
Cook or bake a new recipe
Grow a garden
Look up writing prompts and start journaling
Start a blog or write a book
Volunteer at your local church, animal shelter, soup kitchen, etc.
Join a gym or workout out at home
Refurbish old furniture and sell it online
Draw or paint
Start a side hustle
Basically ask yourself, is there anything else I could be doing besides looking at social media?
8. Make a habit to text or call friends instead of DMing them
Sometimes we go on social media just to contact a friends through a private message. But then afterwards we get distracted and start scrolling through our feed.
You can kick that habit to the curb by just texting or calling your friends instead! Not using the DM feature when you don’t have to is a great way to detox from social media.
9. Consider deleting social medias that you don’t use often or give you no value
This is one of my favorite tips because if you follow it, it’ll be so beneficial for you!
If you’re someone who has a profile on multiple social media accounts, it’s possible that you don’t really use them all. Yeah, maybe you look at them all a few times a week, but you just have them to have them. They aren’t serving much purpose.
If this is the case, pinpoint which social media accounts are actually utilized by you and serve a positive purpose in your life. Then completely delete the rest!
Not only will you have more space on your phone, you’ll have less accounts to keep up with and less social media distractions.
Changing Your Mindset
10. Unfollow those whose posts don’t add value to your life
When it comes down to doing a full social media detox and lessening the time you scroll, you’re going to have to change your mindset.
A great way to do this is to start looking at social media in a positive light. Don’t use it to keep up with drama, or follow that problematic celeb. Stop trying to see what that girl from high school is doing, or comparing yourself to those who make you feel bad about yourself.
Fill your social media only with people and pages that bring a positive, uplifting, and overall purposeful meaning to your feed. So go unfollow all accounts that don’t do this for you.
The goal of this detox is to cut down on your social media time, but when you are using it you want it to actually serve a positive purpose in your life. Otherwise, what’s the point?
11. Use the screen time feature on your iPhone
Another way to change your mindset about social media is to actually realize how much time you’re spending on it. When you see that you may actually be wasting hours and hours per day, it could be a great wake up call.
If you have an iPhone, tracking your time spent on social media apps is so easy! Just turn on the Screen Time feature on your phone settings.
12. Breakup with your phone
A new habit that I’ve adopted that’s really helped me cut down on social media use is what I like to call “breaking up with your phone.”
I know it sounds a little extreme, but hear me out. Basically, don’t carry your phone with you everywhere. It’s that simple!
Get in the habit of leaving it in another room or your purse. For example, in the mornings I try not to take my phone out of my bedroom until my morning routine is complete.
I honestly forget about my phone sometimes because of this habit and it’s so freeing! Break the mindset that you always have to have your phone on hand.
13. Strive to be more mindful of your surroundings
A lot of times we hop on our phones to fill a void. We’re waiting on something, or have a few minutes to spare. We can’t stand to sit and do nothing; our attention spans are so small nowadays!
To beat that tendency to just click on a social media app, practice being mindful of your surroundings. It’ll take some time, but you can get to the point where you actually enjoy sitting in quietness and don’t need constant entertainment or a quick distraction.
I love practicing this by sitting outside in nature and taking in the beauty around me. You’ll be surprised what you’ve been missing.
If you’re in need of a serious social media detox, I hope these tips will help you to cut down on your screen time and create a better mindset towards social media!
And for more help on if a detox is right for you, see my post 10 Signs Social Media Has Become an Idol in Your Life.
Yours in Christ,
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