12 Hour Social Media Detox - Six Simple Steps
Distractions, we all have them. That stated, some distractions can be avoided or lessened, while others in our life are uncontrollable. Not all distractions are negative, either.
For example, depending on what your goals are in your personal life or with your career or business, the clearer you get with your goals in your own individual life, it’s easier to recognize certain distractions that aren’t necessarily helping you create positive progress in that area.
We all have 24 hours in the day. However, the way we get up, our morning routine, how we spend our days and our bedtime routine varies from person to person.
My morning routine has changed throughout the years, but it's also stayed pretty consistent in that I have one. Currently, my morning routine includes enjoying a night of restful sleep (I aim for 8 hours. No, I don't have kids yet, so yes, I make this a priority now!), getting up slowly, choosing my positive power words, feeding the animals, flowing into my yoga practice (sometimes after cuddling with the dog on the couch), post yoga meditation, morning workout, shower, breakfast then starting my work day (from home).
One thing that's changed is that it now includes staying off of social media for over 12+ hours a day. So, in short, my morning routine has nothing to do with work, checking social media, engaging in unnecessary distractions or hitting the ground running and out the door like a crazy woman. (Though I’ve been there, too.)
NO Social Media.
I no longer check my phone or social media when I get up in the morning or before I go to bed.
While I was completing my Yoga Teacher Training (YTT for short) in Bali, we were introduced and also mandated to practice silent hours. (I share a little more about that here.) Prior to YTT, I had already implemented my own little routine specific to technology which included taking off ALL notifications from my phone (over two years ago). My phone is also ALWAYS on silent. Those were both amazing decisions.
Your morning routine does NOT have to look like mine, in fact it shouldn't; we are different people living different lives. I share what mine (currently) looks like as a way to give reference. It's important for you to decide for YOU if you want to make a change that you feel will benefit you and your life.
Sometimes before adding in more, it's important to cut out things that aren't adding value so you can slowly add things in that do make a difference in your life.
Just like there are times in our life that we need a little reset or a nutritional detox or cleanse for our body, it’s also important to do that for our mind and social media.
What do I mean by 12 hours?
In short, my 12 hour social media detox meant that each night at whatever time I last checked social media (for me, it’s mostly Facebook and Instagram) would start the 12 hour clock. So, if I checked Facebook at 9:00 pm (and logged off at 9:15 pm), I wasn’t *allowed* to go onto social media until at least 12 hours later, which in this example would be after 9:15 am.
Social Media Detox Benefits
Here are some of the personal benefits I've receives (I'm still doing it, too) from this little 12+ hour social media detox/experiment:
- More sleep.
- More time for my morning wellness routine.
- Less comparing myself to others on the internet.
- More appreciating and loving my own life.
- I feel more present in my own life.
- I own and value my time more.
- I feel more focused.
- I spend way less time on social media.
- Less feeling insufficient and feeling "behind" in life and feeling more grateful what I do have.
- No pressure to connect and know what everyone else is up to.
- More opportunities to connect with people in person.
- There's more, much more... 🙂
Do you desire any of these benefits?
For me, it’s not an option to totally unplug from social media forever, as I do have an online business and I love the freedom and flexibility it's provided me. I've created a little system or flow that works for me and my own personal life and with that, I'm more conscious of what's going on in my own world (life) and NOT letting the outside world affect how I feel before I get out of bed (or start my day). It's also helped me end my day feeling more grateful for my day and my life.
12 Hour Social Media Detox - Six Simple Steps
If you’ve been pondering disconnecting from social media more or finding a healthy balance for yourself, here are some things you can try out.
I don’t have specific rules, but here's what I did (and currently do).
1. Determine your WHY.
Why do you want to spend less time on social media? What’s your personal reason?
2. Choose the “social media” platforms.
Choose the social media platforms you want to spend less time on. Write them down. (Is it Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, email, all the interwebs, text messages - you get to decide!)
3. Determine when you want to start.
I recommend trying it out for at least seven days straight, if you can do 21 or more (like I did with YTT), I would say do that. (I've been doing it daily for almost five months.)
4. Determine your silent hours.
You can set structured "no social media hours" daily from 8pm - 8am or your desired times (so you’re not checking it before bed and early in the morning) or you can do what I do and look at the last time you logged off of social media, take a snapshot of your clock (or write in your journal/planner) and then stay off until 12 hours later the next day. You can also set "office hours" for strategic social media time to "check in" online.
5. Decide where you'll spend your "Free to BE" time.
What will you do with your time in the morning and evening when you’re not habitually checking in online? Think of it as your "Free to Be" time!
6. Get started.
Create more awareness around your relationship with social media and more time to BE PRESENT in your life. Let others know what you're doing and ask for their support.
My personal thoughts: I'll be honest, some days I get the itch to click on the little apps on my phone first thing in the morning and then again before bed. However, since committing to and implementing my 12 hour social media detox, I resist and with that I've created awareness around those habits/patterns.
I've had to find other things to help me shift my focus. Sometimes picking up a book, practicing yoga, journaling or in the evenings, I've been taking a bath. (I used to never like baths, now I look forward to them.)
With the six steps above, you have all you need to get started.
If you're looking for additional support and guidance around this (or just a reason to actually to commit to it) I plan to put together a little challenge to support you in trying out your own 12+ hour social media detox soon. You can sign up here to be notified when it starts.
If you're a woman and looking to release comparison from the outside world and get more connected with your life and desires and/or just be more present in your own life, I highly recommend trying this out. The morning and evening are crucial, almost sacred, times of the day; it's been helpful for me to shift my focus by releasing those social media habits.
When will you start your 12 Hour Social Media Detox?
I'll share more on when my challenge will start; however, you can start on your own at anytime.
Will you try it out? You have nothing to lose. 🙂