You open Facebook to check your newsfeed and you end up giving hours to it. And after the hours passed, you realized you have wasted a lot of your time.
Now, you have less time and energy to focus on your other important tasks.
If this happens with you often then your social media is controlling you instead of you controlling it.
Be it Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Youtube, the objective of these platforms is to keep you hooked so you can spend more time which will result in making money for their businesses.
That’s how their business model works.
If that’s not true, how these platforms become a million-dollar business when you haven’t invest a penny on it?
It’s because they play with your data, use it for advertisement, analyze your behaviours, data and patterns and manipulate all things to make more money.
Their algorithms are so apt that they know the Newsfeed which stops your scrolling. After making you stop, they recommend more articles, sessions and videos to watch. Then in the next step, they recommend you ads and products which you end up buying. Even if you don’t buy the product you become attracted to some event and become a part of a campaign which isn’t right for you.
In all the process of engaging you with the platform, they reach their targets and make more money even if comes at the cost of compromising your data.
In the race of gaining more likes, running businesses, you become isolated for the long-term and when the digital doesn’t affirm your satisfaction, you become depressed.
We’re a nation of people that no longer speak to each other. We’re a nation of people who have stopped being friend with people because who they voted for last election. We’re a nation of people who have isolated ourselves to only watch channels that tell us that we’re right.
However, if you control your social media habits, you can control your addiction. It’s one of the most-watched documentaries on Netflix and trending in Pakistan also. Many people have shut their accounts after knowing how social is controlling their lives and affecting their mental health.
But everything has a solution. The objective of this documentary was to make the social, good for people. Instead of pushing people towards the false information, the tech giants should work on fact-check, filter the relevant information and most importantly they should introduce policies to protect user’s information.
The irony is that when the employees at Facebook, Twitter and YouTube were asked if they’d allow their children to use social media, they say No!
Well, when the people who are making the systems themselves don’t want their children to use it then why should we?
So, till the time, they make the digital secure for us, here are some things we can do to reduce our social media addiction:
10 Ways to Save Yourself from the Social
Turn Off Your Facebook Friend Suggestions
The people who you met with 5 years ago surprisingly come in your Facebook friend suggestions, and whether you want to add them or not, FB keep showing their names. You can turn off this feature by going into your privacy settings and turning off the location.
2. Declutter your Social Media
Leave the groups and pages which are irrelevant. Follow only the people who will help you grow and these kind of people are quite a few. So, sort them and unfollow all the content creators, pages and businesses which are of no use to you.
3. Don’t Open Recommended Videos
When Facebook or Youtube recommend you videos, they want you to stay more. So, fight this challenge by not opening the recommended post and choose what you want to open. You can also use Chrome extensions which helps you to avoid recommendations.
4. Fact Check Information Before Sharing
Everything you see on the internet isn’t true. That’s why it’s important to research the post before you believe in it or share it. If you tap the share button without validating the information, you’re misleading your friends and family so always, always fact check it.
5. Remove Excess Apps
We have Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Quora, Reddit and Snapchat but are all of them necessary for daily use? We also have news and games app which we don’t even use so find out all these apps on your mobile and remove it. Keep only the apps which are important to living an uninterrupted life.
6. Undo Your Personal Data
The documentary shows how tech giants use your personal data for advertisements and making you connect with new people. Unless these platforms have ample privacy policies it’s not right to upload your personal information on these spaces so time is now to clean it.
7. Limit Your Friend Requests
If you don’t want everyone to be your friend on Facebook then it allows you to limit it. You can’t turn it off permanently but you can limit to your friends of friends only. Here’s how you can take this action.
8. Don’t Check your Mobile Immediately After You Wake-Up
It’s a bad habit and can disturb your whole day. If you open it right after you wake up, you’ll spend your fresh and energetic hours with your device. You should always check it after an hour of waking up. This also applies before you go to bed for sleeping.
9. Turn off All the Push Notifications
This is very important. Turn off all the push notifications so you can save your leg from vibrating 24/7. This will also no put you in the steady rush to check your notifications immediately.
10. Limit your Time on Social Media
The best ways to limit your time on social media is to spend time on your hobby. The more you do things that you live, the less are the chances of picking up the devices. Spend more time with nature as its quite healing and good for the longevity of your life.
What’s your take on this eye-opening documentary on Netflix?
I prefer books and diaries more than phones and Facebook. Soulfully connected to Pakistan. And I passionately believe that I can change the world through blogging.