6 tips to reduce your time on social media

6 tips to reduce your time on social media

Is your phone is the last thing you see before you go to bed and the first thing you reach for when you get up? Do you find yourself scrolling while walking? If so, social media may just be taking over your life.

Using social media on phone

Around 60% of LJMU students use social media more than ten times per day and 14% use it more than 40 times a day. While social media has plenty of benefits in terms of staying connected with friends and family and keeping up-to-date with current affairs, spending too much time on it can affect our mental wellbeing. If you feel it might be having a negative impact on your life, here are a few tips that might help you to ease up on your usage.

1. Out of sight, out of mind

The first step towards breaking the habit of constantly opening those addictive apps is making sure that enticing little icon isn't immediately under your thumb when you unlock your phone. Move your social media icons from your home screen, putting them on your second or third screens a few swipes along, or delete the shortcuts altogether (if you’re really brave, uninstall the apps completely and just log in on your laptop).

2. Remove temptation

Charge your phone on the other side of the room when you go to bed – it’ll stop you procrastinating on Facebook at midnight and may help improve the quality of your sleep.

3. Quality over quantity

Do you close one app then immediately open another in an endless cycle of reloading the latest updates? STOP! Think about which platform you like the most and which is most useful for keeping in touch with family and friends, then – deep breath – leave the others. Delete your accounts, uninstall the apps, and enjoy the empowered bliss of knowing that you’re in charge.

4. Fill your time with better things

Read a book on the bus instead of automatically reaching for your phone the moment you sit down – you’ll be surprised how quickly you can get through a doorstopper even just dipping in 20 minutes a day. Listen to music or a podcast on that train journey home. When you take a break from studying, make a cup of tea, get some fresh air, or go and chat to housemates – leave your phone on silent, in a drawer, until you’re completely done with work for the day.

5. Fear Of Missing Out on…what?

The real-life experience is always better than the filtered social version. What’s better:

  • Seeing a photo of your friend’s #tastyscran on Facebook or enjoying a great meal with friends?
  • Scrolling through endless tweets about nothing substantial or taking yourself off to experience a free film, play or concert?
  • Looking wistfully at #livingmybestlife selfies or actually meeting up with mates for a trip up to Crosby Beach or enjoying an ice cream in Sefton Park?
  • Reading endless motivational quotes or realising that they’re empty platitudes and you can find genuinely life-changing insights in the library?

6. Does sharing really add to your experience?

Take your photos: they’re valuable memories that will last you a lifetime. But don’t feel the pressure to share every photo or random thought on social media. A Like on a post is easy and empty: you don’t need them to know you’re valued – by your friends, your family, and the university. Think about what really makes you happy and if you’d like help on focusing and decluttering your mind, get in touch with Student Advice and Wellbeing to find out about mindfulness and wellbeing support.

We asked LJMU students to talk about their experiences doing a social media detox, find out what advice they have for steering away from social media.

For information about the effects of social media, take a look at the BBC article: Is social media bad for you?


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