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I did a social media detox for two weeks

I’ve recently realised just how much time I spent endlessly scrolling and consuming content on social media.

I decided it was time to see how much time it would free up if I didn’t go on social media for two weeks. The rules are simple… I am going to delete all the apps I can from my phone, and not spend any unnecessary time on the ones I have to keep (Facebook for family, and YouTube for tutorials, music, and podcasts.)

Day 1:

After my lessons, it was really hard not to just lie down on my bed and watch something for 30 minutes to let my brain relax.

I did have a nap earlier, and I’ve read some of the comic book that I bought today – I think these two weeks could become expensive…

I had a productive evening doing some After Affects stuff whilst also listening to a podcast.

It’s now 21.44 and all I wanna do is scroll through Tumblr, watch some silly videos on YouTube, and just turn my brain off… how do you do this without mindless content? How do people relax?

Day 2:

It is weird not having social media as part of my morning routine! I ended snoozing and listening to my music whilst staring at my wall, so I didn’t gain much in terms of time but I did get some more relaxing done.

In the afternoon I played guitar which I haven’t done in months and I went for a walk. Maybe this won’t be so bad after all.

In the evening I ended up messaging my friend everything that I had wanted to tweet during the day. Must. Share. My. Thoughts!

Day 3:

I find myself opening my phone and looking for the apps and then closing it and doing something else – it’s definitely part of my muscle memory!

Day 4:

I’ve noticed that I use the Google News App just like I use Twitter… Whoops! It’s hard not to refresh all the time though, I want to keep updated on the Coronavirus news.

Day 5:

I was so tired after work that I caved and ended up watching some vlogs on YouTube. I was too tired to read but I didn’t want to nap.

Day 6:

I feel unstoppable! I wanna be creative and use my time on exciting things.

Day 9:

It’s been a few days since I last updated you… the hardest thing is not watching YouTube and not scrolling on Facebook, since I am still checking it for other things. I’ve however been practicing my guitar and illustrator skills more… (The dishes are still not done though, so procrastination is still happening.)

Day 10:

First day of social distancing and I unashamedly scrolled on Facebook to see how everyone else was coping. I made some more stuff on Illustrator and finally cleaned my room!

Day 14:

I downloaded the apps again today, but I only went on two of them and barely spent any time on Twitter, which is probably the one I used the most before.

My biggest take-away from this experiment is that I’ve become aware of how I use social media. Whilst I, of course, use it to stay up to date on what is happening in the world, it turns out that a big part of it was also a way for me to let my brain rest and just tune out a little bit; I missed it the most when I was too tired to do other things such as read, draw or play guitar, but not tired enough to go to bed or take a nap.

This has made me better at identifying when I could be doing something else, and when I just need to spend 30 minutes scrolling on an app. I definitely think I’ll be continuing to spend less time on these sites, and I would recommend everyone to try and go without them for a while, if nothing else, just to see how they play a part in your life.