I go on social media (mostly Instagram) way too much, I’ll be the first to admit it.  The funny thing is, half the time I don’t even realize I have the app open.  It’s like Will Ferrell blacking out during the big college debate in Old School- somehow I’m aimlessly scrolling through my Instagram feed and I don’t even remember unlocking my phone and clicking on the app icon.  Social media is not going anywhere and has a place in our lives, just in smaller doses.

We know why we shouldn’t be spending so much time on our phones- it distorts our view of the world and we become less present in our real lives to name a few reasons.  I saw this commercial earlier in the year that was really eye opening.  This guy and girl were walking down the street in some city and literally bumped into each other.  They get to chatting and next thing you know they are dating and in love, engaged, having children, and eventually growing old together as happy as can be.  The original walking scene replays but this time they are both head down on their iPhones.  The guy and girl walk right past each other, completely unaware that the other even existed.  That is some sad stuff!

So what do we do?  This is still a work in progress for me as it’s realllllyyyy hard to break away but I’ve been testing something that’s been working well.  While in Europe over the summer I decided to take a social media break and give up Instagram for a few months.  I made it about one whole week and couldn’t help but to check my feed.  At that point I decided that complete abstinence wasn’t the answer like how we shouldn’t completely restrict foods we like from our diet.  OK, back to what I do that works.

What can be measured can be managed.  I spent a day tallying the number of times I checked Instagram and am embarrassed to say it was over 30.  I also noticed that, much like snacking, I was just checking it out of habit and really wasn’t “hungry".  So- I eliminated snacking.  

This is how I arrived at The Social Media Food Rule- only checking social media while eating meals.  So depending on your meal frequency, this will be 1 to 6 times a day.  Once the plate is empty, the app gets closed.  

It’s not perfect and I break this rule a lot but even 6 times a day is a big improvement on 30 times a day.  As long as I check social media only at meal times most days a week, that’s a win in my book. 

What are you supposed to do with all the free time?  This is up to you but I read books, take walks, do puzzles, and write- you know, all the stuff we did before Instagram...
 


Comments

You are really right about that. I remember that commercial too and it’s a sad reality. I have almost all social media accounts but I rarely check on it. I don’t want to waste my day checking out feeds of everyone I know. I think social media change the way we see things. People became too flashy that they post everything they have online. It’s what they called humble brag and I have plenty of friends like that.

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Let’s admit it that social media is so addictive. It’s like playing video games or eating your favorite food. It’s hard to resist the temptations when you know that it’s there and available. It’s as if you’re trying to ignore something you love or abandon something you can’t leave behind. So instead of keeping a hold of yourself from social media, it’s best to limit the access of use on it. It wouldn’t hurt to lessen the social media activity, right? Besides, it’ll always be around unlike the attention that each member of the family needs.

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06/30/2017 12:49pm

Aren't we all addicted to something at some point in our boring lives? It does not always have to be illegal. Women could be shopping more that they should. Minors could be staying up late more than they are allowed. Teens could be reading more stuff that is not related to school. We all can't help but do things that seem insignificant and useless to some but important to us. This is the part where we get labeled as addicts.

05/16/2017 8:16pm

I found myself the same as you, spending most of my time on social media. Every time I'm on my break from work, I am browsing my free time on mostly twitter and instagram. I found instagram really fascinating since there are a lot of perfectly captured photos. Also, I was also trying to learn some of the designs for the cakes and cupcakes and also plating the dishes as well. I found the digital age really amazing and convenient.

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