Social Question

Haffi112's avatar

How can I stop being addicted to social media?

Asked by Haffi112 (232points) August 23rd, 2009

I constantly find myself being engulfed in social media (Fluther is no exception). The time I used to spend doing studies, reading books, listening to interesting music is now spent on Facebook, talking to people through IM services and Twittering the hell out of my life.

How can I be constructive and let go of these things. Sometimes I find myself utterly bored but I just can’t think of anything to solve the issue. I just autopilot on and sometimes realize I’ve been looking at photos of people I don’t even know for like 30 minutes.

I don’t want this to change me into a sloth, what should I do? At my work I’ve decided to block and because they seem to consume most of my time but I still want to be able to keep in contact with all the people there so easily.

I’m very easily hypnotized by stuff like that. That’s one of the reasons I don’t watch TV anymore. Facebook however is more difficult.

Any advice? I think a lot of people could learn something from this discussion.

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21 Answers

eponymoushipster's avatar

step one would probably be not asking about it on a social media site. ;)

perhaps setting up some software to block certain sites during certain periods of time.

Darbio16's avatar

I heard pussy has been doing wonders in keeping young men busy, you should get some

Haffi112's avatar

Haha the pussy issue is not the problem (actually I’m gay and I think pussies are gross, sorry but that’s just me).

Edit: No offense ladies! :)

Darbio16's avatar

Maybe you should try it with a woman. The shock of it all may make you so sick that you will remember that you got that idea from a social networking site and never return.

dynamicduo's avatar

How about you get an egg timer and set it for internet time? Allocate yourself X minutes per day online, and once it’s done, you can’t spend any other time. Yes, it’s hard. I know, I’m a bit of an addict myself. But I’ve also tried many things to get myself off, some with more success than others. Having something worthwhile to do off of the computer draws me away successfully (well, once I’ve farmed on that silly Farmville game in Facebook). Right now, it’s my spinning wheel, and a dedication to try and complete a shawl by the time I want to wear it. So set goals, make better temptations, limit yourself if you need to, reward yourself if you deserve it in all honesty, you can do it if you try and put yourself to it :)

Haffi112's avatar

Hahaha Darbio, great answer. Well I’ve tried and it didn’t work out :(

Let’s keep it constructive! :)

Thanks @Dynamicduo, I’ll try the egg timer! I hope I haven’t become too weak for that solution though…

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

Move to Antarctica. I’ve heard there is not a lot of social media there. Or social anything.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

Well, I dumped my FaceBook account, told MySpace to eat shit and die, and I have never twittered in my life, and I won’t ever do so, unless it is mocking the birds who sing in my back yard.

Of course, I am an old man, and you are a young studmuffin, so how you solve your problem might be different. Got a guy friend you can play “Chase the Bologna” with? Sex is always a much better way to socially network than in front of a computer.

marinelife's avatar

You might get some tips from reading about this place, the first online addiction help center.

They have a 45-day inpatient program. One of their approaches is to reintroduce to you the passions in your life before social media.

Haffi112's avatar

@jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities Yeah I’ve actually thought about it but I’d rather become a monk (But that would also be ironic) I still think I’d give it a try if I got the chance to.

@evelyns_pet_zebra Yeah well, maybe dumping FB is the only option after all, at least it’s the ultimate solution to my problem. Sex is not a problem for me but at least I’m not on Facebook while I’m having it (that’s a good sign, isn’t it?).

@Marina Thank you! That was a good response, I’ll try it out, maybe my ideals of social networking sites are skewed after all.

Thank you for your contribution to the discussion! :)

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@Haffi112 yup, its a start in the right direction, my friend!

marinelife's avatar

@Haffi112 One thing that I have noticed is that while the addiction and the frenetic feeling that you must check and must look is going on, the actual content of what you learn and even what you share is very mundane when it is done constantly. Do you find that?

avengerscion's avatar

Interesting responses. Most definitely limit yourself with a set time period in which to enjoy your online social networking – nothing wrong with it – you can talk with people across the world and people who may not talk to you in person in real life. Although it is much easier to network online, isn’t it more beneficial to do it in person? Get out and do something physical. At least, if you’re going to network online, have something worth while to say or ask. I cannot stand the people who constantly update facebook with irrelevant comments like “Good morning FB – Goodnight FB – I had Wendy’s for lunch – I’m tired and going to bed.” Why waste other people’s time to read these frivolous comments?

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

throw your laptop out the damn window….

avengerscion's avatar

A side thought to social networking like Facebook. More than anything, I feel bad about myself after viewing other people’s updates. I don’t do too much outside of the home because I am not very social a person – I consider only certian people friends – and because my man isn’t very social either – it’s like pulling teeth to get him out of the house. When I see pictures of friends or high school peers living it up, I feel like I’m missing out on life. When we didn’t have internet connection, I didn’t have these feelings. Other than motivating me to go to college and really make something of myself, I don’t feel there are any true positive aspects to being on social networking sites like Facebook or Myspace or Twitter everyday. Perhaps limiting yourself to these sites once per week will help. There is so much more beyond the computer!

PerryDolia's avatar

Take a close look at the content of what you “keep up” on and recognize that it is trivial.

Stop caring about what other are doing every second. Stop needing to constantly check on trivial stuff.

Haffi112's avatar

@Marina yes I agree, the content is mundane and not important at all. I really need a timer to be on Facebook, five minutes a day etc.

@avengerscion Thanks for the reply, I’m not very social in general either but I do like to make friends in real life. I’ve noticed recently that I can enforce a lot of new relations with people through fb because it’s not a give thing that I’m always bumping into them irl. I’m not sure if I’d miss that but I think I would work on my social skills instead.

@PerryDolia Yeah you point out watch wrong and why it’s wrong but what’s the solution? :D Thank you though, it was short and direct.

wundayatta's avatar

Usually addictions help us cover over other problems in our lives. Like social networking might be a substitute for a lack of real world friends or activities. If that’s the case, you could make an effort to spend more time with real people doing actual flesh world things.

This stuff is addictive because it provides instant returns; instant community. But it can also be addictive if your mind has gotten to a point where it requires constant stimulation or you go crazy. Actually, at that point, you might already be crazy, and you use social sites to calm yourself down or gain some stability (that’s what I do).

It’s really an issue of finding alternate ways to feed the jones that social networking sites fill in your life. So the first thing to do is to figure out what it’s doing for you—spending all your time on places like fb.

Inofaith's avatar

I have this problem too, actually I’m procrastinating right now. But hey I’m helping other people (right)?

Funny thing is that, I went on an excursion a couple of weeks a go for about 6 days. And they told us the city of Linz, Austria had free WiFi hotspots all over.
Since we where there to actually do things, see exhibitions and have dinner with my new classmates… I didn’t miss “the internet” a single second. I didn’t even use my phone that much.
That made me realise that I don’t need this stuff. But just like with candy or potatoechips: when it’s there.. you eat it (don’t we all know that).

So my guess is that you don’t need to check facebook all day long to read what somebody else did… WHO CARES? People on the other end are probably doing something productive, and you’re just sitting there and reading it/

You either check your mail / facebook 1 hour in the evening, or you meet those people in the weekend for drinks and hear the most interesting stories that are probably relevant to you.

To fight procrastination you might wanna check out this site:
It basically states to devide your work up in chunks, and set a timer next to it.

Megawhat has a brilliant & funny 45 second video about twitter:
Megawhat – We Hate: Twitter

haze014's avatar

Just force yourself to go a day without it.
If you can do that, attempt for two days.
Before you know it, you won’t find it as necessary to know that your friend is taking a shower, or walking his dog, or even eating a ham and cheese Hot Pocket.
That’s how I got out of Twitter.

Inofaith's avatar

Hey I’ve found a great too: “SelfControl” (Mac)

It’s basically a timer that blocks a list of websites for a set period of time. Once you start it, there is no going back. You fill in the black-list yourself.

So you can i.e. block facebook, twitter, youtube. You set the timer for 2 hours, fill in your administrator password. And the clock starts ticking.
Shutting the program down, or restarting your computer doesn’t reset the timer.

@haze014: That may be easier said than done.
You see, a lot of my friends who live far away are now all on facebook. So the best and usually only way to communicate with them directly is to message them there.
But facebook luiers you to stay to check “news”, instead of just dropping by, leaving a message and read it the next day or so.

I wish people would e-mail more often.

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