Did you know that the average Canadian spends nearly two hours a day on social media? That’s 14 hours a week, 56 hours a month, and 672 hours a year. Think about that for a moment. We spend nearly 700 hours a year being glued to our screens! That’s ridiculous! For this reason, I’m going to propose an idea in this article that you may or may not agree with — quitting social media.
As of this writing, it’s been nearly 4 months since the last time I was on social media. And I gotta say, it feels great! And there have been many awesome benefits I’ve experienced due to this choice that I will share with you shortly.
But first, let me just say, I’m not against social media — at least not entirely. In fact, I think it’s actually very useful in moderation and I will probably return to it sooner or later (maybe). However, what I am against is its overuse to the point where it hinders your productivity and quality of life.
As such, that’s why I believe quitting social media — or at the very least, taking a break from it — can be so advantageous. And if you’re wondering what those advantages are, then keep reading to learn the 5 incredible benefits of quitting social media.
1. Improved productivity
This probably comes as no surprise, but quitting social media is a great productivity hack. It’s no accident that social media is so addictive, it’s literally designed to be that way. It activates the reward centers in your brain; releasing a flood of dopamine (the ‘feel-good’ hormone) every time you log into your account to see new notifications, messages, likes, etc.
Since your reward circuits fire off almost every time you use a particular platform, you become increasingly compelled to continue using it to gain more of those pleasurable feelings. As a result, this can stifle your productivity in other areas of your life.
This was actually one of the main reasons I decided to take a break from social media. My productivity at work was beginning to nosedive. And since my abstinence, I’ve become more efficient and productive at my job as a writer, which has resulted in a nice bump in my salary as well as a bonus!
Results speak for themselves.
2. More Self-Control
It’s easy to make poor choices.
And what’s worse, poor choices actually feel good when we make them. That is until they catch up with us later on down the road. One of the main benefits of quitting social media (in my humble opinion) is the strengthening of your self-control.
When you quit social media, you unintentionally develop your discipline muscle, and this then tends to spread into other facets of your life.
You’ll be more inclined to eat better, exercise more, and maybe even pick up a new hobby.
This is because social media can take up so much of your time without you even realizing it. So by quitting, you all of a sudden have a “hole” or a “space” in your life to fill. And because you made that space by dropping a habit that wasn’t serving you to any great degree, chances are high that you’ll fill it with a more productive habit.
As a result, greater levels of self-control and self-discipline begin to form.
3. Enhanced Confidence
We all do it, we all play the comparison game.
Unfortunately, this aspect of human nature is exaggerated and intensified on social media. You see friends and acquaintances alike taking the dream vacation, accomplishing big goals, and otherwise living the “perfect” life. And of course, this makes you feel like you don’t measure up in the same way.
As a result, your confidence and self-esteem take a BIG hit.
Even though you’re aware that you’re only seeing this one-sided version, you still feel as if your life is a monotonous series of boring routines relative to theirs.
The solution? Remove yourself. People will always post their best — and often fabricated — lives. It makes them feel significant. That’s why quitting social media so such a powerful catalyst for your confidence to grow. You are no longer playing that comparison game.
And something miraculous happens when you live this way.
4. Sense of Clarity
Here’s the deal…
When you’re on social media every day, you’re being bombarded with countless voices, opinions, & talking points. Family, friends, acquaintances, influencers, etc, are constantly spewing rhetoric at you and flooding your mind with viewpoints that — over time — can slowly drown out your own. And if you’re not careful, this inundation can distort your thinking & dilute your own unique perspective on things.
This is something you don’t really notice happening until you distance yourself from these platforms.
And that’s exactly why quitting social media can help you gain such a strong sense of clarity and perspective on your life. All of a sudden, things become more coherent as your thinking crystallizes. You stop becoming triggered on controversial topics and begin to feel freer and unburdened mentally.
Moreover, your own values become more apparent as well.
Quitting social media –even for just a month or two — will help you get in touch with what truly matters to you. After a couple of months away from the clutches of the screen, I noticed how much I truly valued privacy. I’m not comfortable sharing every facet of my life with people.
You may find that you share a similar mindset after a few weeks or months away from social media.
5. Better Time Management
As a writer, I work from home. This means I must be focused during the day and properly manage my time in order to consistently produce high-quality content — my livelihood depends on it.
As part of my writing regimen, I would complete an article, and then reward myself with a quick 5 or 10-minute break to scroll through social media. No harm, no foul, right?
I noticed that my innocent 5 or 10-minute break would quickly turn into a 30 or 45-minute session of me mindlessly scrolling through Instagram or Facebook.
And this happened so frequently that I decided I had to do something to better manage my time. While it may seem a bit drastic to most people — I decided that quitting social media was a viable solution. And you know? It was.
Since then, I have been much more productive at work, and much happier as a direct result. This improvement in time management has allowed me to write my articles faster, get into deep work quicker, and improve the overall quality of my writing as well.
You don’t realize how much time social media consumes until you take a step away from it.
Will You Take Advantage of the Benefits of Quitting Social Media?
Social media has become ingrained in our culture.
So much so that the idea of quitting may seem a bit excessive to you. If such is the case, but you still want to experience these benefits, simply taking a break for a week or two is often times enough. Especially if you find it hard to go a day without it.
Give it a try and see how you do — you may love the peace of mind so much that you’ll never go back.