How to Stop A Social Media Addiction

Got a social media addiction? Well, reading this blog is the first step to the recovery from your social media obsession. I'm here to tell you it is possible, because I am a recovered social media addict! If you've ever checked your time online, you'll know its shameful! There are never enough hours in the day, but maybe if you get your screen time down from 5 hours to 1, you'll be on track to getting more done and feeling better about yourself in the process.

Now I won't go into detail about the reasons WHY you should curb you addiction because everyones different, but if your social media usage is going unchecked, the negatives will definitely outweigh the positives. I'm all for deleting social media entirely tbh, but like many I still want to be connected and fear being separated from the pack. So here are the 6 steps I took to saying goodbye to my social media addiction.

1. Get  angry at yourself for your lack of self discipline and the amount of your life you are WASTING on your g*d dam phone.

Honestly, without feeling really sh*t about yourself or annoyed, you just won't have the motivation to do the next steps. You have to be really, really fed up, because giving up is serious business. If you need some more inspiration for getting angry, I've got some homework for you in step 2;

2. The ultimate motivation: Watch social media documentaries that will freak you out!

This is important! If you understand the mechanics of these soul sucking apps, you'll have a better chance of taking control, because honestly these app developers are literally using techniques to keep you logged on and locked in at all times. Social media is made to be addictive.  Your attention is why the industry it worth TRILLIONS. Here are a few documentaries to watch:

  • Social Dilema - Netflix
  • The Great Hack - Netflix
    • This is about Cambridge Analytica, a company that worked on the Trump campaign and Brexit using facebook to manipulate voters. There are also books written on this by whistleblowers.
  • Snowdon - You can rent this for £1.99 on Youtube

3. Time for a social media detox!

You need to be able to experience life without social media. At first I did a week with no social media, I really thought I was iconic... As soon as I re-downloaded the app the addiction was back.  I then did a month and that still didn't work. Then a 5 month break and finally that, along with the other steps mentioned below, worked!  Everyone is different. My advice would be to start with a week and keep going until you've:

  • Got to the point where you no longer reach for your phone to snap a pic for your story every time something out of the ordinary happens
  • You are able to sit there and wait for a train without feeling bored and feeling the need to scroll on your phone
  • You've stopped unconsciously unlocking your phone, searching for the social media apps that aren't there
  • You no longer rely on apps to communicate with friends, TEXT THEM

Side effects include: becoming addicted to the news app or any other app on your phone, delete them!

4. Never re-download the apps on your phone

Now this is KEY! Only allow yourself to log into social media via your internet app. The functionality of facebook and instagram is so awful on web browsers compared to apps, and that’s the point. It's not possible to become re-addicted when it's so much harder to use. The experience just isn't enjoyable and if its not enjoyable the urge to go online won't be there. If you have a tablet or ipad as well as your phone, you can download the apps there,  but ensure that you only use it at home.

5. Create barriers

Whenever you’re finished, log out and say no to auto fill of your passwords. Creating barriers gives you the chance to consciously think 'do I really want to go online right now?'.  Say goobye to the reflexes that unlock your phone, which make you  head straight to the dreaded app before you're even aware of what you're doing.

6. Tips for social media and work

There's an app for that. Check out social media scheduling apps. You can spend a few hours scheduling weeks worth of posts! These websites often offer free versions. My favourite is Later.com! You can then allocate 10 mins of your day to checking in.

You might find my 5 month social media break a little extreme, but I couldn't recommend it enough. Social media no longer runs my life, it no longer has power over my mental health and my feelings of self-worth.

So,  we at Dearest Fannie wish you the best of luck on your mission! See you on the other side xoxox