Out of a total population of 13+ individuals, 74.8% use social media (info from Datareportal). A 2019 study suggests, that due to the rise in social media from 2009 to 2017, symptoms of major depression increased by 63% in young adults. Good reason to get rid of social media?
Most of us use social media through platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Reddit, Tiktok, etc. Are we happy with it? Do you feel super great after you end up scrolling for 2 hours on Tiktok?
Spending time uselessly on social media is a bad habit. If I state it more precisely, it is an addiction. No doubt, social media has many benefits to it but it has more disadvantages to its rough use. If you can’t imagine your life without social media you are one of its victims.
Social media has hurtful effects on your mental health. Read up mindfully because I will tell you some solid reasons why you should get rid of social media or at least limit it.
Why Social Media is bad
We aren’t going to talk about generic bad effects of social media like depression, anxiety, unrealistic expectations, and unhealthy sleep. These all effects come after the primary damage social media does, which we are going to talk about.
Social media is an addiction and overuse of social media makes you overstimulated. Hope I don’t fail to explain it briefly, this is a loop. You scroll on social media, it releases dopamine in your brain which causes momentary satisfaction and dopamine level increases. As soon as the dopamine level decreases you go back to social media and dopamine is releases again and carry outs the loop.
The excess use of social media means the excess release of dopamine, soon dopamine overflows your brain and this is called overstimulation. This is where all the mental health issues start.
I am going to represent some harmful effects of social media below as a reason for you to get rid of social media. If you notice any of these bad effects in you, that means it’s time for a break from social media.
• Less Focus
Have you ever felt like you don’t want to watch any long youtube video? Do you get easily distracted during work or class? Are you the person who struggles with focusing on a thing for a long time? Most of us face these issues.
When we endlessly scroll on social media daily, we cause our focus span to reduce. Social media is designed to show you a new post every 30 seconds. You scroll every 30 seconds to see a new post. Then whenever you do something that requires focus, your brain starts wondering after 30 seconds as it is trained to see something new every 30 seconds.
I wasn’t even able to talk with focus, I used to lose focus while talking to someone and space out😂.
Social media becomes the most distracting thing while you do the less stimulating thing like reading. Can you read one paragraph without starting to think about something else? You probably are thinking of something else right now if you are overstimulated. Thanks to social media for that.
• Makes You Less Productive
This 2020 Study done on the impact of social media on employees’ work productivity, showed that people who were addicted to social media were divided into three categories according to their performances.
- Who failed to meet the deadline.
- Who compromised the quality of work to meet the deadline.
- Who complained about distraction from work.
None of them were productive, why? Because they were all addicted to social media and overstimulated. Whether they use their phone while working or not, they were still going to be unproductive because their brain is trained to get a new thing in 30 seconds. They are constantly being distracted by a new thought after small intervals.
The people who use social media during work, waste a lot of time on it and this makes them very unproductive resulting in missing the deadline or low-quality work to meet the deadline. People who avoid social media during work but still are overstimulated because of their excessive use of social media end up getting distracted by their thoughts again and again resulting in being unproductive.
If you want to be a successful person, if you want to achieve something extraordinary and don’t want to stay like an average mediocre person. You have to get rid of social media addiction.
• Everything Feels Boring
Remember when you started to scroll Tiktok, you enjoyed it right? You laughed a bit and it made your mood better because you enjoyed with a little stimulation of dopamine. Over time it starts to feel boring. Now, again you watch Tiktok as it grabs you and makes you scroll infinitely but you don’t enjoy it anymore. Just sometime notice your face while scrolling social media, it should be like this 😐.
Do you ever feel like you want to do something but that is too boring so you don’t do it? Have you ever sat with your controller to play a game and suddenly you feel like all games are boring now, “It’s not fun like it used to be.” I said that line many times until I came to know am overstimulated.
When you are overstimulated, you will want to do the activity that will stimulate you even more than how stimulated you already are. That is the reason doing work, reading a book, reading long comments under a YouTube video, reading a long joke your friend sent you on WhatsApp, and working on improving yourself feels boring.
If you feel the same way, that means you are overstimulated by dopamine in your brain due to excessive use of social media. It’s time to do something about it.
• Overall Poor Mental Health
Social media is the cause for many mental health issues these days. If you noticed all the bad effects discussed above in you, your mental health isn’t good and you have to work on it.
Social media changes your way to see the world and yourself. It fills your brain with stuff you binge-watch on it. Here come the issues like depression, social anxiety, comparing yourself, unrealistic expectations, bad relationships, sleep issues, etc.
If you want to see how much damage has this addiction dealt you. I advise you to take this mental health test. It will give you an idea about your mental health and you can take action accordingly.
It has different negative impacts by looking at it from different perspectives. I just told you the negative effects of it overstimulating you.
I don’t deny the advantages of social media but everything in excess gives a bad effect. If you want to be an extraordinary person in your life if you don’t want to be an average person who feels bad about himself ending the day. You should get rid of social media.
If you notice any of the above effects in yourself, there are a few things you have to do in order to make it better.
- Reduce social media (bad dopamine) and replace it with physical games or exercise (good dopamine).
- Only getting rid of social media won’t recover the damage dealt to your mental health. You have to start practicing meditation to recover yourself. Make this your habit.
If it feels difficult to get rid of social media, know that scrolling on social media is a bad habit. You can break this bad habit as all others, you should know the correct way. You can read this post about How to break a habit in 21 days using 6 Proven Steps.
In this era, the poor mental health of the youth is a major issue. You and I can also be a part of it. Getting rid of social media can be life-changing but it requires a lot of self-discipline to break this bad habit of social media. Stay persistent, focus on progress, stay self-disciplined and focus on the process of becoming the person you were born to be.