We live in a world jam-packed with technology. In fact; according to a UN report, more people have access to mobiles phones than toilets. Thanks to technological advances, the amount of information we receive has grown exponentially. In between 24-hour television, Internet and mobile phones, we receive five times as much information per day than we did in the 1980s. This can easily cause our brains to become over-stimulated. While we cannot give up technology altogether, we can give conscious breaks to our over-stimulated minds from time to time. Doing so will help you consume smaller amounts of higher quality information. Here are some easy ways to do a social media cleanse
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Take a moment to explore how you currently feed your mind with technology.
- How many hours of TV do you watch per week?
- Time you spend reading/writing emails or surfing the web?
- What about social media?
Be honest. This will help you analyze how much time you spend scrolling through lives of others or curating your own life to present online.
2. Bring family and friends on board
This is necessary if you want to do a technology cleanse. Let your friends and family members know of your decision so as to prevent misunderstandings. You can always ask them to call you on your landline if there is an urgent message. Decide upon the hours you will check your phone/social media. Let your friends and family know your timings.
3. Replace technology with a great activity
You can easily do a technology or social media cleanse by selecting a good activity to replace it. Take a class, hike, garden, read, paint, and workout or do anything you’ve always wanted to but never had the time for. You can also cook a great meal and/or reconnect with your kids/partner. Select an activity that is not isolating-this way you still get to interact with people. A dance class, pot-making, wine tasting etc are some good hobbies to indulge in.
You can easily do a social media detox at your workplace. Bring your colleagues onboard about the benefits of a social media cleanse. When more people are with you, the greater are your chances of success.
5. Delete applications
As a part of your social media cleanse plan, delete certain apps on your phone. Get rid of Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or all those applications that take up your time. This is particularly essential for a social media cleanse after breakup. You certainly do not want to see photos of your ex having fun with someone else. If deleting the apps is not an option, you can at least unfollow or block certain people. This is very important to do so you can spend quality time on recovering and healing your mind and spirit. You can also mute certain application notifications to prevent getting distracted or feeling tempted to check the said apps.
6. Start small
Many people go for large goals like ’30 day social media cleanse’. This may not be possible or feasible for all. Instead, set smaller goals like an one-day social media cleanse or 2 day social media cleanse etc. The weekend is a good time to do this. During this period, give your phone/laptop to a friend/family member so you can reduce temptation of checking updates on social media.
Many groups of people have successfully done a social media or technology cleanse by hosting social media cleanse challenge. Get together and decide not to use your phones/laptops for a certain period of time. Keep an eye out on each other. Enjoy the time by going away to a place without internet/ phone signal etc.
8. Let go of fear
The number one deterrent of not being successful with a social media cleanse is the feeling that you will miss out on important news. Let go of this fear. So what if you hear the news later?
9. Be mindful
This is the best time to meditate or practice mindfulness! Observe the thoughts going in your mind when you are doing the social media cleanse. Are you irritated, annoyed or jittery because you have not checked your phone? Perhaps you are afraid of missing out on stuff. Whatever the thoughts, just accept them and do nothing. At this time, you must also try and be mindful in whatever it is you may be doing: whether it is washing the dishes or cooking or gardening. Pay 100% attention to the task at hand. Inculcate this habit and in no time you will notice not having missed social media at all.
10. Go out and help others
The social media cleanse time is the best time to go out there and help people who are in need. Volunteer at a soup kitchen, or coach the neighborhood kids. Whatever you choose, you will find these activities give you greater pleasure than social media.
Try these 10 easy steps for a social media cleanse and give your mind a much needed break!