Social Media Detox

Jul 24, 2023
This page discusses the benefits of a social media detox and the author's personal experience deactivating Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.


Since the latter part of this year, I have found myself frequently deactivating my social media accounts, only to reactivate them due to the necessity of academic information. The question that arises then is, why do I deactivate my social media?
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The answer is simple - it's exhausting. Social media platforms are designed to keep users scrolling endlessly. The recommendation algorithms of today's social media are too powerful. When I initially intended to take a five-minute break from my college work, I would end up spending over an hour scrolling through my feeds.

The Platforms I Deactivated


Among all, Instagram is the platform I detest the most. It seems to have a knack for draining my emotions. Yes, I understand that the content recommendations are based on user preferences, but somehow, I find myself inadvertently looping through the same content and often reading the comments. This would then sour my mood, leaving me unwilling to do anything afterward. I also find myself disliking some of the stories posted by people I follow - stories I wish I could unsee and moments I wish I could retrieve.


TikTok is another platform that I have deactivated. Back in high school, I would mock my friends who were active on this platform, which seemed quite silly at the time and wasn't as hyped as it is now. However, during college, I was forced to install TikTok for a video assignment. I found myself increasingly drawn to the short videos and ultimately addicted. TikTok is a major time sink - its diverse, entertaining, and short videos make it easy to spend hours on the platform. However, it's not just the time factor - it also drains my emotions. I often find comments that make me wonder, "How can they comment like that? Don't they realize they might be hurting others?" It's also home to toxic communities that I find quite cringe-inducing.


Facebook is the first social media platform I used extensively, and it's also my favourite. It's easy to find communities that you like and connect with them. I had a great experience back in middle school when I was into Photoshop and found a supportive community. However, I also learned a valuable lesson about the futility of getting into fruitless debates that only left me upset for the rest of the day. Thankfully, I realized this while still in middle school.

The Benefits

For approximately six months now, I have rarely opened my social media accounts unless it's necessary. Once the need is fulfilled, I promptly deactivate my account again. I find that I am much better off this way - my emotions are no longer wasted on meaningless content on social media. Sure, I may not be able to connect with distant acquaintances, but that's not much of a loss for me as I rarely needed to. I still have WhatsApp to connect with my close circle. I feel more focused on myself, my real life, and my close ones. It's a small step towards a healthier digital life, and I look forward to maintaining the balance.