Social media addiction is a major problem especially in the younger generation. It is a subtype of the broader form of addiction Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) which was officially identified as a psychiatric disorder in 1996. The problem with social media addiction is that people fail to acknowledge it as a serious mental disorder. Most people also don’t understand what qualifies them as social media addicts. In this article, learn more about the subtle signs of social media addiction and how they can negatively impact your life.
1) Snapping Photos of Every Life Detail to upload it Online
No matter where you are, you just keep snapping photos and uploading them to Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. Whether it’s the cute neighbor’s cat or your meal -from appetizers to desserts- you just can’t stop feeding the social media hounds. You don’t even stop to ask yourself “Are people really interested in what I am doing?”
This is a crucial sign of social media addiction.
2) Checking Social Media First thing in the Morning
A social media addict wouldn’t just check up his/her phone or computer for updates as soon as he/she wakes up. Some of them actually wake themselves up through the night to check on a certain update or whether they received a reply to some message they sent or not. People become so obsessed with the constant stream of updates on social networks that they fear they are going to miss out on each and every new post. This case worsens during major events when everybody is talking and posting about a single, global topic.
3) Checking in at Every New Location
Believe it or not, the world doesn’t care about everytime you go to McDonald’s or T.G.I. Friday’s. In fact, you shouldn’t feel obliged to tell your social media buddies where you were -by checking in- no matter how popular this trend has gotten. Enjoy the outing and put down your phone for a minute. Social media bragging has become a daily activity that it is almost starting to become “bizarre” how people are not being a part of it.
4) Constantly Checking For Updates or Likes
One of the major signs of social media addiction is the frantic checking up on your smartphone for updates, likes or interactions on Twitter, Facebook and similar websites. You start becoming more and more distracted from whatever you are doing, including housework, important tasks at your workplace or your homework.
5) You Hashtag Almost Every Single Word You Type
If you are an Internet user in the late era, you’ve probably been exposed to the hashtag craze. The hashtag started as a beacon for conversation topics on Twitter. It quickly turned into an obsession that invaded other social networks including: Facebook, Instagram and tumblr. You have a case of social media addiction if you are hashtagging your way on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Some people hashtag every single word they type, aiming that way to get more followers and fans.
6) Constantly Referring To Your Online Activities
When people ask “How are you?” don’t expect them to be aware of every single detail of your social media persona. If you are constantly updating your social media accounts with day-to-day activities, it’s not necessary that the world is catching up with you. You are not a celebrity for people to become interested in your most intricate details.
7) You Became Part of the Candy Crush Mania
Check your Facebook gaming status: are you just playing word games and puzzle games in your spare time? Or has your Candy Crush mania gotten out of control? Facebook games are known to be both pretty simple and pretty addictive, as well. Your social media addiction has kicked in pretty hard when your Facebook gaming turns into an obsession. You find yourself nagging people about sending you new lives or merchandise. You spend your credit card on extra lives to reach the next level of the game where you start all over fretting and obsessing about winning to the level after it.
8) Your Online Life Has Become Your Real Life
Have you found yourself discussing your online life in-person? Do you often refer to your online activities as your daily routine? Do you have more friends online than in real life?
Unfortunately, these are all signs of severe social media addiction where your online presence overshadows your reality until it completely takes over your life.
9) You Create Social Media Accounts for Your Pets or Teddybears
This is very self-explanatory. If your dog has a Facebook account and your stuffed elephant has an Instagram one, then you definitely have too much free time on your hands. Spend it in the outdoors instead of gazing at your iPad screen.
10) Social Media Interactions Stress You Out
How many times have you felt stressed out because somebody didn’t reply to your message, or because they read your message yet didn’t come up with a reply? How many times have you fretted over somebody who has ignored your friend request? These are all serious signs of social media addiction.
Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have seeped into your daily life, turning it into a mini-Hell of doubts, worries and regrets. The best advice would be to make social media less of an integral part of your life. Living life has nothing to do with writing a status about it.