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Back in October I started a NoFacebook/Twitter/Instagram month in a noble attempt to reduce my dependency on social networks. The ultimate motivation for the initiative was to be more productive at work and in my other daily activities. I felt time could have been better utilized on actions which added value to my personal growth.

The “fast” was completed with a refreshed perspective and a positive awareness of the effects of some social networks on myself. Mark Sisson from Mark’s Daily Apple has written a few noteworthy articles regarding the effects of social network. One of it was regarding “the physiological consequences of being hyperconnected”.

Depression

On the surface, one would think that checking our Facebook, sending texts, reading emails, and sharing Instagram photos should us feel like we’re establishing and maintaining meaningful connections with other humans, but the reality is that these pursuits taken to an extreme only make us feel more isolated from and less connected with real people. In fact, the more frequently you use social media or check your phone the more likely you are to report feeling sad, depressed, and lonely. A recent study in young adults showed that Facebook use predicts declines in subjective well-being, while “direct” contact with people does not. Some clinicians even have a name for it: Facebook depression.

On top of all those physical and psychological consequences, we’re also missing out on the other stuff I mentioned at the start – the conversations, the smiles, the laughs, the everyday bits and pieces of life occurring right in front of our perpetually averted eyes.

Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-physiological-consequences-of-being-hyperconnected/#ixzz2mYst7RLd
Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-physiological-consequences-of-being-hyperconnected/#ixzz2mYlEXBZB

However following the “fast”, I noticed a tendency to return to the mindless addiction of the said social networks if actions were left uncontrolled.

Here are some methods I have adapted into my daily routine to keep myself in check.

1) Log out from the social networks after you’re done.

It is more troublesome to type in your username and password again. It acts as a barrier to entering the website/social network when you find yourself with nothing else to do (there is always something to do by the way). Log it off from your mobile phones, computers and other social devices.

2) Schedule a time meant for social network

15 mins – 30 mins is all you need. Compartmentalize your social network time slots in your day. Before work? Lunch time? After work? Stick to the timeslots and you’d find yourself in control of your day.

3) Dealing with excess information

With regards to Facebook incessant newsfeed of “friends”, there would be a possibility of you finding yourself viewing the life of acquaintances whom you hardly meet. Keep your newsfeed limited to a few selected individuals you are closed to; i.e Family, relatives, 1 or 2 close friends. Remove the newsfeed of the others. Knowing too much of what is going in the lives of others makes us forget what is going on in our own.

Social networking sites could be a great tool to keep connected to people and long-lost friends. However, it is dangerously easy to get caught up with it. Learn how to use them wisely.

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