Social Media and Social Networking

Get Social!

How to Beat the Social Networking Addiction!

Posted by Vaibhav Kalamdani on April 5, 2009

Today, one of the most difficult things for majority of us is to spend a day without logging in to a social networking site. Everyday, most (if not all) of us access atleast one social network to know what our friends are upto, or to let people know about what’s happening in our life. Slowly and steadily, this process becomes repetitive, eventually turning out to be an addiction, isn’t it?

I have come across many people who spend a lot of time using various applications that sometimes provide absolutely “nonsense” results. Secondly, when you actually see your friends’ activity on the site, you realize that most of the updates take place in regular intervals within a day. This shows that people log in multiple times on a social network in a single day to pass their time, doing nothing productive.

With the rise in time spent on social networking sites, we can clearly see two major transformations taking place:

1) An increased use of the Internet
2) Devoting more time to the virtually-located social world, rather than the actual society.

So, what can you do to beat this “uncontrollable” behaviour? Is the social networking addiction making your life too much dependent on unwanted things? Do not worry! Follow these simple ways to beat the addiction:

Plan your online time-spend: You may think this is funny, but it is important that you chalk out how much time should be devoted to the Internet, particularly the social networking sites. People who are addicted to social networking generally tend to visit their preferred social network first as soon as they log on to the Web. Hence, planning your time and following it sincerely will help you get started with your goal to beat the addiction.

Call your friends: With social networking sites in place, people normally prefer to write on a friend’s wall (on Facebook), or send a scrap (on Orkut), or post a message (on Twitter) to communicate with their friends. This is one of the habits that is common to all who network online, whether an addict or not. However, calling up your friends personally or via phone sometimes will help you avoid sending messages through social networks – another way to combat the addiction.

Find alternatives to pass your time: Most of the people who are habituated towards social networking waste their time unnecessarily, doing nothing. One of the biggest signs of social networking addiction is to pass your time on the site, without exactly knowing what to do. The solution to this is to find alternatives to pass your time, such as reading books, engaging in an indoor/outdoor activity, or even blogging for that matter. This will do a great deal in diverting your mind towards something constructive.

Take out time for your family and friends: The major disadvantage of social networking addiction is that it slowly separates you from your family. You prefer spending more time online than with your parents, siblings, cousins, and relatives. This may actually hamper your family life in the long run, as you would be disinterested in attending any family function, going on outings, etc. Hence, try spending as much time as possible with your family or friends to make sure that you do not hamper your social life, and do not distance yourself from your beloved ones.

The evolution of social networking has both advantages and disadvantages for the society. The major advantage is that it helps you connect with your family and friends who may be far away from you; and the disadvantage is that too much of it can affect your social progress. While the debate goes on whether social networking is a boon or a bane to the society, it is important and wise that we get out as much positives as possible from this phenomenon, without making it our habit or addiction.

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