I started 2017 with 10 Resolutions. As of now — February 10 — 9 of them are on track, and I need to get going with the Spanish lessons.
I also started 2017 with a determination to make 2017 my Best Year Ever. And I really believe it can be… but one thing has got to change. I’ve got to break my social media addiction.
I am a gregarious person on social media. I participate in dozens of secret Facebook groups. I chat on Twitter. I encourage people, get into long philosophical discussions, and join in on long strings of jokes or idle chatter.
I can do it for hours a day. But those are hours a day that I need for other stuff. I also think it’s bad for my concentration when I’m working, reading, or writing.
I’ve known for years that it’s a problem. (Sheesh, breaking my internet addiction is on my list of 101 Life Goals. And by the way, no, I’m not going to break my addiction to list-making, ever.)
I’ve gone through periods where my social media addiction was less of a problem, and also periods of downright denial. From what I’ve heard, those experiences are common with lots of addictions.
Addictions always have their rewards, and that’s especially true of this one. I love feeling connected to people. I learn a lot from them. And honestly, I feel gratified when my comments are liked, responded to in a positive way, or retweeted. It’s probably a little dopamine rush for my brain, reinforcing the habit.
I really believe that breaking my social media addiction is the key to reaching my other goals and to making 2017 my Best Year Yet.
So how am I going to do it? This isn’t a case where I tell Facebook I’m taking a long break. (I’ve tried that before, and I keep peeking anyway.)
I’m going to keep track of my time on social media using the Eternity app. (Sometimes I use the Eternity app to track how much time I spend on everything, which I’m going to be doing for the rest of the month. It gives you pretty pie charts showing how your day was spent, and it’s enlightening, to say the least. This sample chart is from the app developer.)
I’m going to limit my social media time to 30 minutes a day. To some people, that might sound like a lot. To me, it’s nothing. But I think it will still be enough time to at least stay caught up with the hundreds of people I like and care about.
(Blogging doesn’t count toward that 30 minutes a day. I want to write 2 blog posts a week, and blogging is a concentrated effort, not a constant distraction taking over my life.)
So that’s my 11th resolution, the one that I think will make a profound difference in my life and possibly even in my brain chemistry.
Is it easy for you not to overdose on social media? Or does it wind up being a time suck for you, too? Have you had the experience of cutting back? Let me know in the comments! And thanks for spending some of your precious time reading my blog!