It isn’t a secret: social media has been linked to unhappiness, poor mental health, and an overall decrease in our satisfaction with life. Naturally, now that we know this, many of us are limiting our use of social media or deleting accounts altogether!
Personally, I’ve been making more of an effort in recent months to limit my use of social media. I am not just doing this for my mental health. I am also doing it to be more productive and intentional with my time!
My biggest weakness is Instagram because it is honestly my favorite social media platform. I have a reminder set up in the app to let me know when I have reached a total of 40 minutes of being on the app per day. I plan to cut that time down even more as I get better about managing my time!
Creating a to-do list and a schedule
I have started to create a to-do list for the day as well as schedule my time so I’m not just mindlessly scrolling through social media or sitting in front of the TV. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that almost every weekday, I’ve been posting my daily “top three,” which are the top three things I plan to do that day. By sharing my top three with my followers, I feel like I have a bunch of accountability buddies out there!
Setting time limits via the settings on my phone
I have time limits set for Instagram and Facebook on my phone. If I spend two hours on social media, then my phone shuts down the apps and I can’t open them until the next day. Thankfully, I have never reached that time limit! I will probably bring that time limit down even more as I get busier in 2020.
The worst habit: checking social media in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep
In the past, I’ve had a terrible habit of checking my phone in the middle of the night when I wake up and can’t get back to sleep. I don’t know why I thought it was important to check social media at 0300, but I knew that I should NOT be doing that and should be focusing on getting back to sleep instead! Therefore, using the settings on my phone, I have all of my apps “off-limits” from 10 pm to 4:30 am. The only apps I can use are apps related to my home, like Nest and Ring, and I can still make phone calls if needed.
Doing this has helped me break this habit and focus on getting better sleep!
Using social media to engage with others and lift people up instead of mindlessly scrolling
When I do use social media, I try to be more mindful and use social media more intentionally. Instead of just scrolling through everything, I try to engage with my friends and followers more. I comment more and share things that might make people smile or I might share something more real about how I am feeling or doing because I know that there are people out there who can relate.
Have I noticed a difference in my happiness since limiting my use of social media? I’m honestly not sure yet. I think the reminders and limits I’ve set need to be a little more strict, but I am trying to take baby steps with it! I can tell you guys that I am much more productive. I’ve been able to create more blog posts, send more newsletters out, and create my new services.
I recommend challenging yourself to limit your social media use and observe how it changes your life!
I wear a lot of hats: NASM Certified Personal Trainer, Weight Loss Specialist, and Fitness Nutrition Specialist. A writer with a B.A. in English and Professional Writing. A fur mom and a wife. A mental health advocate and a septic shock survivor. An Airman and an athlete. I live in South Florida and am in love with the ocean. People can typically find me either in the gym or at home, writing or reading.