Do not waste time on social media....by Gurjot Singh Kaler
May 10, 2022: Since the advent of the internet and social media, our lives have changed dramatically. No doubt, social media has become an integral part and parcel of our daily lives. The world has become a closed social group wherein we are all the time connected through social media apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and so on.
Physical distance between people has diminished drastically across the globe as we are now more closely connected through such known social media apps and many more unknown ones. All this connectivity, 24 by 7, looks quite exciting but is it so? Is such overuse of social media contributing to positive, rewarding, and beneficial results in our lives?
In today’s times, if we tend to observe our daily routine closely, then, the first thing that we do in the morning as soon as we open our eyes frantically searches for our mobile phones to see the notifications on social media. This is true for a majority of us and it is taking a heavy toll on our lives in the long run whether we understand it or not.
We have all become tragic victim of our false imagination surrounding social media and living a toxic myth that spending more time on the internet or social media leads to more productivity in our lives.
The social media platforms are designed to function in such a manner that if one does not exercise self-restraint or self-control, these sites make us hooked on to their never-ending content and one keeps on mindlessly scrolling through them and finally ends up wasting one’s precious time, energy and efforts. Sometimes, a mere 10 minutes on social media gets unconsciously translated into hours and hours of wastage of time.
Just imagine that if you are habitual of wasting 2 to 4 hours on social media every day, then, it becomes 1460 hours in a year, roughly equaling to 60 days in a year. This time could have been better utilized in a much better manner rather than frittering it away on browsing useless social media posts which does not effectively contribute in any manner towards our growth, progress or prosperity in the long run. Digital detoxification is the need of the hour.
Rather than connecting so much with the outside world, it would be beneficial to take a much needed break from social media and connect with our real inner selves. It’s time to debate, discuss and discover better ways to judiciously use the internet and social media that it does not become an unwanted bane of our life.
Here are some effective ways which can help you in the short term as well as long run to effectively improve your relationship with technology in a way that spending time on social media and the internet becomes productive and not destructive Learn to wisely audit your time spent on the internet and social media every day. Observe your habits and routine care. Try to use a time tracker device and then, introspect the number of hours you are regularly sitting in front of a computer screen or your mobile phones or tablets in a week.
Disconnect from the social media sources which are not giving any valuable information and consuming your energy of mind and interfering with your originality of your thoughts and creativity. Maximize your efficiency. Everybody in this world has 24 hours a day. Do not waste your precious time; it can make you feel disconcerting later on in life.
Wisely using the internet can help you improve your attention and concentration levels in life as well lead to a better healthy lifestyle with increased sleep duration. Internet addiction has a very negative impact on one’s anxiety, stress and depression levels. Spending too much time on social media actually hacks the reward system in our brain and distracts us from engaging in real productive activities like exercising, working, socializing and so on.
To prevent yourself from killing your time on the social media, it is helpful to inculcate the habit of scheduling one’s time spent on the internet. Rather than going online whenever we are ‘free’, it would be prudent to fix a particular time slot in your daily routine to log in and surf the world of internet. It has been noticed that many people browse internet or social media out of boredom at work or home.
It is advisable to develop a creative hobby or take breaks from work to take a little stroll in the garden or read a newspaper rather than mindlessly clicking on You Tube links. Wise people often schedule their mealtimes, workouts, travel plans etc. So, why not schedule one’s time on the internet too? It certainly requires will-power and determination but can pay big dividends and help one avoid unwanted distractions. Try spending the saved time with your loved ones instead in real life. Prioritize your time spent on the internet and stop scrolling through someone else’s vacation pictures which is of no real value to you. Focus on real priorities of your life.
Spending less time online can also help you overcome your weight gain issues, backaches, neck-pain, headaches and blurred vision problems. Overuse of internet also leads to many psychological issues like anxiety or sleeping disorders. Recently, internet addiction has attracted the attention of psychologists and psychiatrists. So, if in any case, despite putting in your best efforts, if you still feel that you are not able to control your addiction to the internet, then, it is better to consult professional help in dealing with the issue at hand.
No doubt, internet has played an instrumental role in making human lives better, but it has negative implications too. If we want to reap the benefits of internet and social media, it is really imperative to use it wisely. Be real and remember that offline world is more lively and exciting than the offline one. Internet and social media can be your friend or foe depending upon how you tend to use it.
The writer is the author of book, "New India - The Reality Reloaded"
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