Because of its small size and the fact that it could only be accessed on a regular computer, Facebook addiction wasn’t a big deal in the past. On our smartphones, we carry our connection to this massive social networking site with us wherever we go. Thousands of advertisers on tv, in magazines, and on product packaging tell us to “like us on Facebook” even when we aren’t looking at our phones.
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Here are some strategies for breaking free from your Facebook addiction and spending more time doing the things you want or need to do.
- Deactivate your account for a week at the very least
Many people have found relief by temporarily deactivating their Facebook accounts in order to get away from it all and realize what they’re missing out on by spending time on the site. Some people do it for a week, others for a month, and some never return to their accounts to restore them. The advantage of committing for a limited time is that you can return to it if you need to, so you won’t feel like you’re missing out forever. If you decide to reactivate your Facebook account, setting a goal to do it for at least a week can help you reset your Facebook habits.
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- Make a list of all the people you know on Facebook.
Most people can admit that they’ve added hundreds of old friends, colleagues, and acquaintances to Facebook over the years. Not to mention likes on public pages. Even if you haven’t spoken to any of these people in years or lost interest in those pages months ago, an extensive network of people you barely know and tons of pages sharing frequent updates can trigger an overwhelming desire to know what’s going on at all times.
Except for family members and special friends who live around the country or overseas, it’s a good rule of thumb to go through your friend list once a year and unfriend someone you haven’t spoken to in more than a year. This way, you can reduce the number of lost connections on your list and avoid becoming entangled in the lives of people from your past.
- In contrast to the Pages, You Don’t Need
When it comes to liked pages, get rid of the ones you don’t need and keep the ones you like or find useful. However, unlike pages in bulk is not possible on Facebook.
- Go to Facebook.com/pages to see a grid of all the pages you’ve liked so you can start unliking the ones you don’t want to follow. You may also hide or snooze post updates from unique pages and individuals without unliking or unfriending them from your news feed.
- Remove any third-party apps that are no longer in use.
- Remove any unnecessary third-party applications you’ve installed over the years when you’re cleaning up—if not for distraction then to protect your privacy.
- You can uninstall apps in bulk on Facebook by going to Settings > Apps and Websites and choosing the apps you want to delete by clicking on them and checking them off. When you’re done, click Remove.
Make Facebook Access Difficult for Yourself
It can be as simple as placing Facebook out of sight and out of control to overcome your Facebook addiction. This can be accomplished by:
- Signing out of your account after activating two-factor authentication.
- On your phone or tablet, delete the Facebook app.
- Removing the link from your bookmarks
- Changing your homepage from Facebook to something else.
- Not having Facebook open in your web browser at all times.
If you’re having trouble practicing self-control on Facebook, you might try using a time management app or a website blocking tool.
- Limit your Facebook use to once or twice a day.
Let’s say you’re not ready for a detox and don’t want to erase all of your 500 Facebook mates. Make a deliberate decision to just check Facebook and do all of your contact one or two times per day, such as in the morning, during your lunch break, or right before bed.
It takes self-control to do so, and it isn’t for everybody. If you’re disciplined, you could be content with spending just 10 or 20 minutes a day engaging on Facebook once or twice instead of checking it constantly.
- Last Words on Facebook Addiction
Facebook addiction, as well as other forms of social media addiction, is rapidly becoming a subject of debate in psychology and technology. It will almost certainly remain an important issue in modern society as more websites and applications vie for our attention.
By maintaining self-control and resolving your life’s goals, you have the absolute power to break your addiction. If you believe your addiction is severe enough that you cannot handle it on your own, seek support from close friends, family, or mental health professionals.
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