The number of social media users seems to be on a never-ending rise. According to the latest statistics, there are expected to be 3.96 billion social media users worldwide in 2022. With new apps and features popping up every day, it’s almost impossible to resist the temptations of social media. And yet, there’s no question that the time we spend on social media each day can be spent on so many other, and possibly, much more productive pursuits. Time spent with friends, family, and on hobbies that we have learned to ignore over the years as technology has advanced.
So, I found a way to combat this dilemma:
Once in a while, I deactivate all of my social media accounts with no hesitation. I’ve been doing this for three years now. After suffering from severe depression from late 2017 to early 2019, I noticed that the constant comparison and feelings of FOMO triggered by my social media consumption encouraged my negative and self-destructive thoughts and habits. I used to go to university or work, come home late at night, and scroll through my feed only to realize that I was not feeling good enough, that I had failed in life, that I should have studied a subject with more stable prospects, and so forth. Moreover, when I saw my friends from school days who seemed to be more successful, thriving and stress-free, it occurred to me that I am also missing something important in my life. It made me wonder: how healthy could this constant consumption of social media really be? This is why I’ve compiled a list of all the perks and benefits I’ve noticed after freezing my social media accounts. Whether you’re in a similar situation or just want to read about the positive aspects of a social media detox, the following list is sure to help you rethink your social media consumption and change your perspective.
It made me wonder: how healthy could this constant consumption of social media really be?
You have more time to be creative
The first thing I did after deactivating my social media accounts was to resume old hobbies and interests because I suddenly had so much free time. I started working out more regularly and started playing the piano again. I also introduced yoga into my life, and it has since become an irreplaceable hobby in my life.
You can spend more time with your loved ones
I don’t know about you, but I definitely spend way too little time with my family and too much time on my phone mindlessly scrolling through various social media feeds only to be exposed to hundreds of similar content ideas. But since going cold turkey, I’ve been actively spending more time with my parents by cooking with them, taking daily walks, or watching movies in the evenings.
Your self-confidence increases
The impact of freezing my social media channels on my confidence has been immense! Before I did this, I was constantly stressed about my appearance, weight, and even wardrobe as I compared myself to idealized, photoshopped versions of women with Eurocentric beauty standards. But all of that magically disappeared when I deleted Instagram and Pinterest from my phone. I stopped comparing myself to others and felt better about my looks. Moreover, I started standing behind my own decisions because my thought processes were no longer influenced and dictated by strangers.
You are happier
This is by far one of the best side effects of social media abstinence: YOU. WILL. BECOME. HAPPIER. And why, you may ask? Well, because you no longer feel the need to constantly get approval from strangers by posting mindlessly on your Story, and you no longer suffer from FOMO either. You start living in the moment and appreciating your surroundings. Soon after, you will realize: Life has so much more to offer than just a colorful, animated screen.
You sleep better
Definitely check your social media addiction to see if it’s the reason for your lack of sleep. I spent two hours after going to bed IN MY BED scrolling through social media. When I couldn’t fall asleep, I figured I probably needed to supplement with iron and magnesium again, instead of paying attention to my nighttime habits, which were clearly interfering with my sleep.