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You Don’t Have To Cut Social Media Out Of Your Life…

Time to say, "bye, bye?"

 

Time to say, “bye, bye?”

 

Let me make one thing really clear from the get-go: I love social media. I spend hours upon hours of my life scrolling Facebook, checking in on Twitter, and ogling Instagram. I am by no means a social media hater.

 

But…

And of course you knew there was going to be a “but.” The “but” here is the fact that, while I’d be a terrible hypocrite if I tried to convince you that social media is the root of all evil, I still feel kind of… ambivalent about it.

 

I think most of us do. We know that there’s no way that the time we spend on social media wouldn’t be more productive or creative or even just interesting than doing basically anything else and yet we’re still on it, 24/7.

 

SEE ALSO: The Ultimate Guide To Unplugging

 

I feel a pretty constant nagging guilt in the back of my consciousness about my social media use. Sure, I justify it with the excuse that I’m a blogger (“I have to spend eight hours a day on Facebook! It’s for work!”) but we all know that’s 80% bullshit. Most of the time, I’m not researching articles. I’m passively observing my “friends” (not very interesting) lives.

 

Confession: I just took a five minute break and mindlessly scrolled Twitter, even as I’m in the middle of writing this.

So how do we control ourselves? How do we keep control our social media, rather than letting it control us? Aubre Andrus had some great practical suggestions on Mashable recently, including having a friend change your passwords and not tell you and deleting social apps from your phone. I’ve also suggested utilizing apps like SelfControl, RescueTime and Block Facebook Newsfeed as effective methodologies in past posts.

 

RELATED: 7 Apps To Boost Productivity When You Work From Home

 

All of those things work, to some degree or another but my favorite form Aubre’s list was the suggestion that we all “replace one urge with another,” or train ourselves to do something other than surf social media. Aubre suggests reading or knitting or “literally anything!” I want to reinforce that suggestion by tacking on a couple more.

 

For me, reading has always been my main hobby and my Kindle has done a great job supporting my addiction to the written word. I keep it on me at all times and always reach for it when I’m bored, whether it’s waiting in the doctor’s office or riding public transportation. I’ve also recently re-committed to painting, setting aside time each day to do something with paints.

 

DON’T MISS: Society’s Newest Addiction – And How To Quit Cold Turkey

 

Both of these activities are ones I was really, really into as a teenager and let fall by the wayside of grown-up responsibilities and grown-up activities like jobs, going to bars, and, yeah, social media. But just because I stopped doing them doesn’t mean I ever stopped loving them and its been a joy to welcome them back into my life.

 

Take a couple of minutes and really think about what you loved to do when you were a teenager and then take a couple more and figure out how you can integrate those activities into your daily life as an adult. If you find yourself saying, “But I don’t have time!” be truly honest with yourself about how many hours you spend on social media. I bet you’ll be able to make it happen.

Author : Emma McGowan

Emma is a proud native of Burlington, Vermont, who has lived in six different countries over the past two years. She's living and loving the global nomad life and writing about technology and startups everywhere she goes. Check out more of her writing about tech on (the more titillating stuff) KinkAndCode.. Follow her on Twitter @MissEmmaMcG.

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