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8 Things That Will Happen If You Break Up With Social Media

8 Things That Will Happen If You Break Up With Social Media

Before Mark Zuckerberg thought of Facebook, we were still connecting with our family and friends. Before the era of social media, life was lived, the sky was still blue, and the sun still shone. If you break up with social media, the moon will not fall down, the sun will not stop shinning, every blade of grass will still be different and every snowflake will still be unique, but here are 8 things that will happen if you break up with social media.

1. You will be happier and more content with life.

In the virtual reality of social media, it’s very easy to compare your life with your colleagues and belittle yourself. We want to be like the other person, we like how their body looks, we love the things they have, life seems to be going forward for them while our life seems to be at a standstill. They got that dream job while we are still jobless. They visited the country on our bucket list. They got married and had a beautiful baby and our life pales in comparison.

On social media, everyone posts their nicest pictures and best moments. It is highly unlikely that anyone is going to put their bad moments on display for all to see. If someone travels around the world on holidays, there will probably be a picture of it on social media, but if their landlord should kick them out for not paying rent, they probably won’t mention it online. So, why compare your life to the virtual life you see on social media and feel miserable? It’s like comparing your worst moments with everyone else’s best. Breaking up with social media will make you happier and more content with your life. There will not only be no more pictures and posts to compare your life to, but you will realize that your life is not actually so bad.

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2. You will be more productive.

You will suddenly realize that a lot can be done instead of scrolling up and down on social media. You will find ways to make your dreams more real. Have you always wanted to learn a new language or play the piano or guitar? Instead of wasting time on social media, you can actually invest that time into your dreams and watch them become reality. At work, you can get a lot done instead of peeping on your phone every now and then. It can be very easy to deceive yourself by trying to limit your social media use, but how many times has a planned 15 minutes on social media turned into 2 hours? You don’t fight temptation, you avoid it.

3. You will be grateful for your life.

Breaking up with social media will let you see the reality of the world. You will be more grateful for your life instead of being jealous and envious of the lives of others on social media. You will realize that your life is awesome, that you don’t need to let the ten things you don’t have that your social media friend does have prevent you from giving thanks for how lucky you’ve been in life.

If you have food, clothing, and a roof over your head, you are richer than 75% of the people in the world today. If you have savings in the bank, you are in the top 8% of the world’s wealthy today. If you woke up this morning with your health, you are more blessed than the 1 million people who will not survive this week. If you have not experienced the pain of starvation, you are more fortunate than 500 million people in the world today.

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When you log out of social media and log in to life, it will not be long for you to realize that what you have now and are taking for granted is someone’s prayer request. Whilst you envy your friend’s Ferrari on social media, someone is busily praying and fasting for your Toyota.

4. You will have an improved relationship with your family and friends.

Social media claims to be connecting you with your family and friends, but is it really? How often have you found yourself on social media while the real people around you go unnoticed? How often do you catch yourself scrolling up and down on social media instead of talking to the human next to you? Social media may claim to connect you with family and friends, but in reality it disconnects you from them. When you break up with social media, you will realize that calling, talking, and having dates without social media interruption is a great way to bond and connect with your family and friends.

5. You will see how beautiful the world is.

I bet you think you have seen enough of the world to appreciate its beauty. But, if you can put your phone in your pocket and not distract yourself with notifications, it won’t be long before you see that birds are not always white, some are actually pink. We are only here for a very limited time. Instead of spending most of that time on social media, we can spend it visiting the beach, the forest, and appreciating nature. At least then, if we die and go to the next world and we are asked how the earth looks, we can tell about how beautiful it really is.

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6. You will be innovative.

When you are constantly distracted with social media, your brain is shut to real life issues and you become less innovative. When you break up with social media, you will be become more innovative and improve your life. Perhaps you need more money, but merely wishing for it doesn’t earn you any extra cash. If you drop the phone and stop distracting yourself with social media, an idea on how to earn that money might come to you.

7. You will be smarter and wiser.

When you log out of social media and log in to real life, you will spend your time wisely on useful things, like books and great websites that actually improve your life and enrich you with knowledge to make you a better person. You can find time and exercise instead of perusing social media and complaining about how you never find the time to hit the gym. That time spent on Facebook could have been used on a great workout. Whilst others are wasting their lives on social media, you will be reading a life-changing book, hitting the gym, being innovative, and making your dreams come true.

8. Your future self will be grateful.

The future is not bright until you deliberately polish it today. If you do not give up unhealthy habits that get you nowhere, your future is going to be full of regrets about the things you could have done and didn’t do simply because you were too busy on social media. If you give up social media today and invest the time into your dreams, your future self will be happy that you had the time to learn Spanish, play the piano, to start that business or write that book.

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Featured photo credit: Man checking his phone via picjumbo.com

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Last Updated on March 21, 2019

11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits

11 Important Things to Remember When Changing Habits

Most gurus talk about habits in a way that doesn’t help you:

You need to push yourself more. You can’t be lazy. You need to wake up at 5 am. You need more motivation. You can never fail…blah blah “insert more gibberish here.”

But let me share with you the unconventional truths I found out:

To build and change habits, you don’t need motivation or wake up at 5 am. Heck, you can fail multiple times, be lazy, have no motivation and still pull it off with ease.

It’s quite simple and easy to do, especially with the following list I’m going to show to you. But remember, Jim Rohn used to say,

“What is simple and easy to do is also simple and easy not to do.”

The important things to remember when changing your habits are both simple and easy, just don’t think that they don’t make any difference because they do.

In fact, they are the only things that make a difference.

Let’s see what those small things are, shall we?

1. Start Small

The biggest mistake I see people doing with habits is by going big. You don’t go big…ever. You start small with your habits.

Want to grow a book reading habit? Don’t start reading a book a day. Start with 10 pages a day.

Want to become a writer? Don’t start writing 10,000 words a day. Start with 300 words.

Want to lose weight? Don’t stop eating ice cream. Eat one less ball of it.

Whatever it is, you need to start small. Starting big always leads to failure. It has to, because it’s not sustainable.

Start small. How small? The amount needs to be in your comfort zone. So if you think that reading 20 pages of a book is a bit too much, start with 10 or 5.

It needs to appear easy and be easy to do.

Do less today to do more in a year.

2. Stay Small

There is a notion of Kaizen which means continuous improvement. They use this notion in habits where they tell you to start with reading 1 page of a book a day and then gradually increase the amount you do over time.

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But the problem with this approach is the end line — where the “improvement” stops.

If I go from reading 1 page of a book a day and gradually reach 75 and 100, when do I stop? When I reach 1 book a day? That is just absurd.

When you start a habit, stay at it in the intensity you have decided. Don’t push yourself for more.

I started reading 20 pages of a book a day. It’s been more than 2 years now and I’ve read 101 books in that period. There is no way I will increase the number in the future.

Why?

Because reading 40 to 50 books a year is enough.

The same thing applies to every other habit out there.

Pick a (small) number and stay at it.

3. Bad Days Are 100 Percent Occurrence

No matter how great you are, you will have bad days where you won’t do your habit. Period.

There is no way of going around this. So it’s better to prepare yourself for when that happens instead of thinking that it won’t ever happen.

What I do when I miss a day of my habit(s) is that I try to bounce back the next day while trying to do habits for both of those days.

Example for that is if I read 20 pages of a book a day and I miss a day, the next day I will have to read 40 pages of a book. If I miss writing 500 words, the next day I need to write 1000.

This is a really important point we will discuss later on rewards and punishments.

This is how I prepare for the bad days when I skip my habit(s) and it’s a model you should take as well.

4. Those Who Track It, Hack It

When you track an activity, you can objectively tell what you did in the past days, weeks, months, and years. If you don’t track, you will for sure forget everything you did.

There are many different ways you can track your activities today, from Habitica to a simple Excel sheet that I use, to even a Whatsapp Tracker.

Peter Drucker said,

“What you track is what you do.”

So track it to do it — it really helps.

But tracking is accompanied by one more easy activity — measuring.

5. Measure Once, Do Twice

Peter Drucker also said,

“What you measure is what you improve.”

So alongside my tracker, I have numbers with which I measure doses of daily activities:

For reading, it’s 20 pages.
For writing, it’s 500 words.
For the gym, it’s 1 (I went) or 0 (didn’t go).
For budgeting, it’s writing down the incomes and expenses.

Tracking and measuring go hand in hand, they take less than 20 seconds a day but they create so much momentum that it’s unbelievable.

6. All Days Make a Difference

Will one day in the gym make you fit? It won’t.

Will two? They won’t.

Will three? They won’t.

Which means that a single gym session won’t make you fit. But after 100 gym sessions, you will look and feel fit.

What happened? Which one made you fit?

The answer to this (Sorites paradox)[1] is that no single gym session made you fit, they all did.

No single day makes a difference, but when combined, they all do. So trust the process and keep on going (small).

7. They Are Never Fully Automated

Gurus tell you that habits become automatic. And yes, some of them do, like showering a certain way of brushing your teeth.

But some habits don’t become automatic, they become a lifestyle.

What I mean by that is that you won’t automatically “wake up” in the gym and wonder how you got there.

It will just become a part of your lifestyle.

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The difference is that you do the first one automatically, without conscious thought, while the other is a part of how you live your life.

It’s not automatic, but it’s a decision you don’t ponder on or think about — you simply do it.

It will become easy at a certain point, but they will never become fully automated.

8. What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

Marshall Goldsmith has a great book with the same title to it. The phrase means that sometimes, you will need to ditch certain habits to make room for other ones which will bring you to the next step.

Don’t be afraid to evolve your habits when you sense that they don’t bring you where you want to go.

When I started reading, it was about reading business and tactic books. But two years into it, I switched to philosophy books which don’t teach me anything “applicable,” but instead teach me how to think.

The most important ability of the 21st century is the ability to learn, unlearn, and relearn. The strongest tree is the willow tree – not because it has the strongest root or biggest trunk, but because it is flexible enough to endure and sustain anything.

Be like a willow, adapting to the new ways of doing things.

9. Set a Goal and Then Forget It

The most successful of us know what they want to achieve, but they don’t focus on it.

Sounds paradoxical? You’re right, it does. But here is the logic behind it.

You need to have a goal of doing something – “I want to become a healthy individual” – and then, you need to reverse engineer how to get there with your habits- “I will go to the gym four times a week.”

But once you have your goal, you need to “forget” about it and only focus on the process. Because you are working on the process of becoming healthy and it’s always in the making. You will only be as healthy as you take care of your body.

So you have a goal which isn’t static but keeps on moving.

If you went to the gym 150 times year and you hit your goal, what would you do then? You would stop going to the gym.

This is why goal-oriented people experience yo-yo effect[2] and why process-oriented people don’t.

The difference between process-oriented and goal-oriented people is that the first focus on daily actions while others only focus on the reward at the finish line.

Set a goal but then forget about it and reap massive awards.

10. Punish Yourself

Last two sections are pure Pavlovian – you need to punish bad behavior and reward good behavior. You are the only person who decides what is good and what is bad for you, but when you do, you need to rigorously follow that.

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I’ve told you in point #3 about bad days and how after one occurs, I do double the work on the next day. That is one of my forms of punishments.

It’s the need to tell your brain that certain behaviors are unacceptable and that they lead to bad outcomes. That’s what punishments are for.

You want to tell your brain that there are real consequences to missing your daily habits.[3]

No favorite food to eat or favorite show to watch or going to the cinema for a new Marvel movie- none, zero, zilch.

The brain will remember these bad feelings and will try to avoid the behaviors that led to them as much as possible.

But don’t forget the other side of the same coin.

11. Reward Yourself

When you follow and execute on your plan, reward yourself. It’s how the brain knows that you did something good.

Whenever I finish one of my habits for the day, I open my tracker (who am I kidding, I always keep it open on my desktop) and fill it with a number. As soon as I finish reading 20 pages of a book a day (or a bit more), I open the tracker and write the number down.

The cell becomes green and gives me an instant boost of endorphin – a great success for the day. Then, it becomes all about not breaking the chain and having as many green fields as possible.

After 100 days, I crunch some numbers and see how I did.

If I have less than 10 cheat days, I reward myself with a great meal in a restaurant. You can create your own rewards and they can be daily, weekly, monthly or any arbitrary time table that you create.

Primoz Bozic, a productivity coach, has gold, silver, and bronze medals as his reward system.[4]

If you’re having problems creating a system which works for you, contact me via email and we can discuss specifics.

In the End, It Matters

What you do matters not only to you but to the people around you.

When you increase the quality of your life, you indirectly increase the quality of life of people around you. And sometimes, that is all the “motivation” we need to start.

And that’s the best quote for the end of this article:

“Motivation gets you started, but habits keep you going.”

Keep going.

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More Resources to Help You Build Habits

Featured photo credit: Anete Lūsiņa via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Sorites paradox
[2] Muscle Zone: What causes yo-yo effect and how to avoid it?
[3] Growth Habits: 5 Missteps That Cause You To Quit Building A Habit
[4] Primoz Bozic: The Lean Review: How to Plan Your 2019 in 20 Minutes

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