Search

Why can’t I put down my phone?

Written by: Jake Bradshaw

I’m addicted to mindless scrolling. My platforms of choice are LinkedIn and Instagram.


I spend about 30 minutes scrolling mindlessly everyday. Scrolling doesn’t make me feel good, it doesn’t usually make me smile or laugh and it provides zero value to my life. In fact, I actually hate mindless scrolling, I find it soul sucking and it feels like a complete waste of time.


So why do I do it? Why can’t I stop?


I know that social media was designed to be addictive, I’m acutely aware that I’m addicted to it, I’ve taken steps to manage my addiction and I co-founded The Social Reset to help others manage their usage. Despite all of this, I STILL find myself scrolling mindlessly and I hate it.


gif

So where does that leave me?


Our mission at The Social Reset is to help people cultivate healthy relationships with social media but lately I’ve started to question whether this is even possible.


To me, having a healthy relationship with social media means using it on your own terms and at your own schedule. This means setting limits on apps and actuallying sticking to these limits. It means reflecting on why you want to use social media and only using it for the specific purposes that you intend. It’s the opposite of mindless scrolling, it’s about being intentional with your usage.


I’ve met a lot of people who have deleted social media and are now permanently off of it. However, I’m yet to meet someone who claims that they are able to manage their social media usage in a healthy way (as I described above).


I’ve tried a lot of different tactics. I’ve blocked out time in my calendar to check social media, I meditate everyday and one day a week I don’t use my phone at all. But mindless scrolling still gets me!


I block out time in my calendar but I don’t follow it. I check Instagram and LinkedIn obsessively, even when I have no clear reason to do so. I usually spend at least 10 minutes scrolling mindlessly before I’m able to catch myself.


When these things happen I try not to beat myself up. I remind myself that social media was designed to be addictive and setting boundaries on your usage is REALLY HARD.


If you’re struggling with this too, know that you’re not alone. I’m confident that eventually we will find something that works and once we do we’re going to share it with the world.