Social Media Addiction: A Personal Story

Persistent, compulsive use

How many social media accounts do you have? How many times do you check them each day? How long do you spend on each one when you do check it? If you have a smartphone, do you have notifications turned on? How long do you wait to investigate when you hear that sound?

Of a substance … to be harmful

Taking out the middle of this statement for a minute, is social media harmful? Certainly it takes up time that we could be using for more productive things. Notifications are a distraction from work, driving, relationship moments. But is it actually harming us?

Known by the user

Do I know that social media is doing all of this to me? Yes. Do I use it persistently anyway? Another yes. I absolutely know what is happening, but still continue to use it.

Am I addicted?

Absolutely. I tried to go a single day without checking social media, and it was very difficult. I thought about checking several times. I negotiated with myself that one lapse wouldn’t be a big deal. I wondered endlessly about what was happening, what I was missing. Then it turned dark. Would anyone even notice I wasn’t online? Maybe nobody cared about my posts and comments anyway. All of this in the span of maybe 12–14 hours (that I was awake that day). The next day I checked Facebook first thing upon waking up.

What am I doing about it?

I am putting my phone into airplane mode whenever I am engaged in a task or driving so there are no notifications to distract me. I am working on a new morning routine that does not include checking social media first thing before I even get out of bed. I installed the Messenger app so I don’t have to open Facebook itself to access the chat features, which cuts down on my mindless scrolling after every exchange.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Erin C

Erin C


A vandwelling, firespinning, sustainability nerd building a new life from the ground up.