5 Tips to Unplug Yourself from Social Media

Marion Tabard/ Madame Figaro


5 Tips to Unplug Yourself from Social Media

Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook… These applications hypnotize us even during vacations. Two experts give us their advice in order to unplug from smart phones.


Watching Snapchat or Instagram stories at breakfast, tweeting during the day and "mating" on Tinder at bedtime, this is the daily routine of many people, whether they’re at work or on vacation. Vincent Dupin, founder of “Into the Tribe” and a digital detox coach, confirms that getting likes, reactions and comments on your posts releases dopamine; a brain molecule associated with pleasure, but also a lot of frustration.


Check out these tips, shared by specialist and clinical psychologist Maria Hejnar, to disconnect from these digital platforms and enjoy your vacation instead.



1- Be conscious

While you’re connected to social media, it’s hard to come back to real life. To take a step backwards and be released from this addiction, psychologist Maria Hejnar advises to take a look at the clock, which "contributes to increasing the level of consciousness". In order to get an idea of the time spent on social media, it is now possible to observe your activity on Facebook or Instagram. To do so, go to the "Settings" of the two applications then check "Your activity" section on Instagram or "Your time spent" on Facebook.



2- Willpower

Recognizing how addicted you are to social media is not enough to disconnect from it. "Motivation is necessary," insists the psychologist.

According to Coach Vincent Dupin, you have to set a self-discipline to end this addiction. For those who wish to keep their smart phone at hand, it will be better to disconnect from mobile applications at certain times of the day, by adjusting notifications to show up at a specific time or even put their smart phone in "do not disturb" or "airplane" mode.

During vacation, the psychologist recommends to spend some time without a phone. "During an outing or activity with family or friends, leave your laptop at your place," suggests the specialist.



3- Use apps for help

If you find it hard to unplug from social media, you can use applications such as OFFTIME or Flipd which can be installed on the phone from the App Store or Google Play.

These applications aim to reduce our excessive distractions on connected apps. They offer a total locking mode to hide applications and games on mobile, while leaving the possibility of making calls. Also, they include more relaxing features like listening to soothing music, audio meditation or motivational sessions.



4- Internet disconnected

To use any application, you definitely need internet connection; however, if you take out the latter, you will be able to avoid your bad habit.

According to the French government’s list in 2015, 541 small municipalities live in white areas, meaning without 3G or 4G access. Going on vacation to places where there’s no internet access, "is the right way to build deep relationships with your loved ones while enjoying the present moment," confirms Vincent Dupin. 



5- The only function you need

What if the problem comes from the appearance of the applications?

"They are designed to make you addicted to them, with attractive designs and colors," points out Vincent Dupin. In order to make it easier for you to unplug, the “digital detox” expert invites you to distort the marketing of these applications by changing the colors of your phone screen to black and white.

To do this, simply go to the smart phone settings; iPhone users will go to the "Accessibility" tab and activate the "shades of gray" option. As for Android users, go to the “color filters” category to select this same option.

However, if these tips are still not enough to make you limit your phone usage, the Coach offers you the ultimate final solution: "buy an old phone from the early 2000s, with the sole function of being reachable.”