How to break the social media cycle


Making the swap for books instead of phones

Sydney Thomas-Arnold, Feature Editor

Related: Commentary: Social media essential, but a problem

With most teenagers having almost unlimited access to social media, it’s no surprise that excessive use has become an issue. While social media itself isn’t inherently bad, it is possible to have too much of a good thing. By first recognizing over use of social media and the issues that come along with it, teens can then work to limit said usage and create healthier habits. Here are some ways teens can stay off social media:

Screen time restrictions

A highly effective way to limit screen time is through the phone itself. There are many apps available, like Screen Time, which allow users to manage and limit certain apps and the time spent on phones. Certain social media apps themselves, like TikTok and Instagram, provide app limits that users can set in their settings.

Phone features

Remember to utilize the phone’s features. Simple things, like turning off app notifications, take away the attention of social media. Other features like dimming the screen, can make the phone and therefore social media less appealing and less distracting. Another feature includes Apple’s Focus feature. This is a tool that users can easily personalize to help them stay off their phones as it can turn off certain notifications (Do Not Disturb mode), it can be enabled to automatically turn on at specific times, and more.

Finding things to do

One of the most impactful things that can be done to limit time on social media is to fill the time with other, more beneficial things to do.  Having activities on your phone that’s not just scrolling is a good start. For example, reading an E-book or the news, listening to a podcast, or even just watching a movie, are all better alternatives to scrolling.

By implementing better, more mindful habits, limiting time spent on social media will be easy and beneficial. Finding small things to do outside of your phone and changing some bad habits is a realistic and ideal way to deal with the unhealthy cycle of social media.