Impact of social media on youth | Today’s addiction
Impact of social media on youth – Are you familiar with Facebook and Instagram? Do you use Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google +? If your answer is a yes, you know what social media is and there is a certain chance that you might be addicted to one of them.
There is absolutely no problem and nothing wrong with using social media. Some people use it to check updates from their friends and to stay connected. Some people use it for entertainment and to kill time.
The problem comes when someone becomes addicted to social media and overspends their time on those platforms, as a result, they waste their valuable time in such non-productive stuff. And this is obviously something that you want to avoid.
Let’s take Facebook as an example. Facebook is the biggest social media and used by most people in the world. It has 1.13 billion daily active users and if it represents a country, it will be one of the most populated countries in the world.
More importantly, Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg said that on average, people would spend about 50 minutes a day on Facebook, Instagram, and also the messenger platform. Well, 50 minutes a day does not sound like much.
However, you should understand that there are only 24 hours a day, and an average person sleeps about 8 hours, and this means that one-sixteenth of an average person’s waking time is spent on Facebook.
Spending 50 minutes a day on Facebook will accumulate and become an extremely time-consuming activity that will eat up most of your life.
Do you know that studies have shown that people read only about 19 minutes a day on average and most people spend only about 17 minutes in sports or exercise each day? It is unacceptable to see people spend more time on Facebook than they do on exercise and reading for improvement.
Are you a social media addict but don’t know about it? Let’s discuss what is social media addiction.
What is Social Media addiction?
Social media addiction is a term that is often used to refer to someone who spends too much time on social media like Facebook and Twitter or other forms of social media. As a result, it affects a person’s daily life.
Although there is no official medical recognition on social media addiction as a disease, the negative habit of excessive use of social media has become a subject of much discussion and research.
However, it is difficult to tell if someone is a social media addict. If you spend a few hours into social media checking updates and reading random tweets on Twitter, does that make you an addict?
Some people claimed that they spend time on social media to read the news and to find entertainment to kill time; they are not addicted to it. So how can we tell if someone is an addict?
At Harvard University, researchers have performed MRI scan on people’s brains to see what happened when they talk about themselves, which is an essential part of what most people do in social media. The result showed that self-disclosure communication creates pleasure in the brain. In conclusion, it makes people happy and high when they talk and think about themselves.
There is no direct conclusion in determining if someone is a social media addict, however, many physicians have observed similar symptoms such as depression, anxiety, psychological disorders, and more are the proofs of social media addiction.
What are the most common symptoms of social media addiction?
Here are the five most common symptoms of social media addiction –
- Social media is the first thing you do in the morning.
What is the first thing you do once you wake up in the morning? If your answer is to check Facebook or update your status on any social media platform, it is a clear sign that you are addicted to social media.
Almost every addict will start their day with a morning routine of checking and pointlessly scrolling through what they have missed on social media after the long hours of sleep at night.
Most social media addicts feel like they have lost a lot of time and are outdated, thus, they want to check the status and see who has posted something new.
- You waste your time looking at nonsense and procrastinate.
One thing that makes people less productive and accomplishes less in life is procrastination. And social media is a big cause and also the motivator for procrastination.
Such activities can be a form of entertainment, but in reality, most of the things shared through on social media will not do any good to your life.
For example, some people scroll through videos of funny cats, while others “stalk” others and some swipe through their ex-girlfriend’s pictures from years ago. Most of these activities are time wasters and they do not add any value to your life.
- You check notifications all the time.
Checking notification can be a normal thing to do when your phone buzz. However, if you are checking it all the time regardless of whether your phone buzzes, you may suffer serious addiction.
People check their phone because they receive notification, and most of the time, the notifications are from social media. Which means to say that these notifications are not really that important in your life.
- You only want to contact and talk to your friends via social media.
This is another sign of showing that you are a social media addict and the disorder slowly takes place in your life. Gone are the days of phone calls and text messages.
With the introduction of platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat, people may choose to contact you using those platforms and avoid real physical contact.
If you choose to use social media as the only means of contacting and talking to other people, the sign is clear that you are a social media addict.
How you can restrict social media from eating your valuable time?
If you think that you spend too much of your precious time on social media or perhaps you are addicted to it, not to worry because there are ways to get rid of the bad behavioral issue.
- Get Rid of Notifications
One of the key factors people are getting addicted to social media is because they often distract by notifications.
In fact, notifications can act as a reminder to the users to check their phones or computers. Therefore, the most effective way to solve this is to turn off the notifications. Plus, if you always get distracted by notifications, you cannot concentrate well on your tasks at hand.
- Limit Your Time Spent On Social Media
Besides turning off the notifications, another thing you can do is to limit the time you spend on social media.
For example, choose to spend only 15 minutes a day on social media. You can check Facebook each day, but make sure you use only minimal time or you use it only at a certain hour of the day.
- Make Yourself Busy
Yes, whenever you are free, you will automatically pick up your smartphone and spend time on social media. Replace your usual free time that you used for social media for other things.
For instance, go to sports. What are your hobbies? Do you love to read? Do you want to play the piano? Do you love jogging? Do you want to go for a swim? Or do you like fishing? Make yourself busy so that you will have no free time to check on social media.
- Restrict Your Time Spent on Social Media Through Apps
This is another effective way to limit your time usage on social media. There are plenty of Apps you can use to restrict your time spent on a social network such as Offtime, Moment, AppDetox, BreakFree, and Stay on Task.
These Apps are designed in such a way that they will restrict your time spent on most social platforms. These Apps are useful especially for the addicts and children who spend too much of their time on social media.
So how you’re gonna save your precious time?