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7 Reasons Why Quitting Facebook Now Is Good For Your Future

7 Reasons Why Quitting Facebook Now Is Good For Your Future

For the past 100 years or so, there had been huge improvements in communication. From letters to telephone calls, from telephone calls to text messages, from texts to video calls and from to videos to social network and on and on. Following all these improvements, one of the biggest inventions of the 21st century was founded in 2004 and since then it started to spread like an epidemic virus, first in the US and then around the world.

Now Facebook has more 1.23 billion monthly active users. Although initially it aimed to bring all people together for the sake of connecting, the effects of Facebook on masses became a huge discourse after it gained so much popularity. Until now, lots of disadvantages had already been listed. It is now time to list the ones that definitely affect your productivity.

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1. Facebook is a time waster.

While being on Facebook and scrolling down through the news feed, many are not aware of the time they actually spend on viewing others’ life events or sharing. It became such a disease that many even feel obliged to like or comment on anything that was shared. You might think of the time spend on Facebook as your free time, though you are not aware that you can spend the same time taking care of yourself, learning something new or doing your daily tasks.

2. Facebook can demotivate you.

By seeing someone else’s continuous posts about the parties they went to or friends they see frequently, you might feel insecure about yourself and even feel as a loser if your own posts are not as cool as the ones in your news feed. However, there is rarely such a thing as going out every day or having lots of acquaintances to meet everyday. Moreover, sharing every moment of your life is also not obligation, since being private is quite a norm.

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3. Facebook makes you deal with useless people.

Look at the number of friends you have on Facebook. How many of them are really good friends? Or how many of the friend requests you get are real people or your actual acquaintances? You have to admit that you have people on Facebook who are not related to you, but who would write to you once in a while and more than likely, you will answer to them. Thus, you waste not only your time, but also your energy.

4. Facebook makes you deal with useless information.

It is one thing to read newspapers or magazines in order to get information, but it is an entirely other thing to be faced with the same information, trends and innovations through continuous sharings of people. I bet one of the things that you will not miss about Facebook after quitting it, are the selfies of girls with the infamous duckface.

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5. Facebook damages your communication skills.

When is the last time you actually hung out in real life with your friends, relatives or colleagues? Because of the social media that is supposed to help us communicate, we forget about real communication, and therefore, have difficulties communicating effectively which negatively affects our relationship at home, at work or anywhere else really.

6. Facebook manipulates you to work on your posts.

One of the biggest problems of Facebook is its influence on people’s creativity. Although it is assumed to be a free social media site, which let’s you to share almost anything you want, you have this tendency to want to get more likes. In order to get more likes, you must work very hard on your shared posts, trying to make it funny, creative or smart while you could spend the same time doing something much more useful.

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7. Facebook becomes your life.

The marketing strategy of Facebook is quite clear – to make you spend as much time as possible on the Web site. While working on their posts to be cool and wasting time on Facebook, many people actually try to be someone else, but end up being isolated from real world and real themselves. It is possible to spend the same time and energy into simply being yourself, or a better version of you. Which begs the question, why not try it?

The reasons above are presented to you in order to help you consider your feelings regarding Facebook and imagine how it can badly affecting your life and productivity. Therefore these points will guide you in seeing what your life will be like without Facebook. So really, quitting the popular social media site doesn’t sound so bad after all, now does it?

Featured photo credit: picjumbo via picjumbo.com

More by this author

Leyla Abdullayeva

Research Team Leader, T&I Consultancy

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Last Updated on July 17, 2019

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

What happens in our heads when we set goals?

Apparently a lot more than you’d think.

Goal setting isn’t quite so simple as deciding on the things you’d like to accomplish and working towards them.

According to the research of psychologists, neurologists, and other scientists, setting a goal invests ourselves into the target as if we’d already accomplished it. That is, by setting something as a goal, however small or large, however near or far in the future, a part of our brain believes that desired outcome is an essential part of who we are – setting up the conditions that drive us to work towards the goals to fulfill the brain’s self-image.

Apparently, the brain cannot distinguish between things we want and things we have. Neurologically, then, our brains treat the failure to achieve our goal the same way as it treats the loss of a valued possession. And up until the moment, the goal is achieved, we have failed to achieve it, setting up a constant tension that the brain seeks to resolve.

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Ideally, this tension is resolved by driving us towards accomplishment. In many cases, though, the brain simply responds to the loss, causing us to feel fear, anxiety, even anguish, depending on the value of the as-yet-unattained goal.

Love, Loss, Dopamine, and Our Dreams

The brains functions are carried out by a stew of chemicals called neurotransmitters. You’ve probably heard of serotonin, which plays a key role in our emotional life – most of the effective anti-depressant medications on the market are serotonin reuptake inhibitors, meaning they regulate serotonin levels in the brain leading to more stable moods.

Somewhat less well-known is another neurotransmitter, dopamine. Among other things, dopamine acts as a motivator, creating a sensation of pleasure when the brain is stimulated by achievement. Dopamine is also involved in maintaining attention – some forms of ADHD are linked to irregular responses to dopamine.[1]

So dopamine plays a key role in keeping us focused on our goals and motivating us to attain them, rewarding our attention and achievement by elevating our mood. That is, we feel good when we work towards our goals.

Dopamine is related to wanting – to desire. The attainment of the object of our desire releases dopamine into our brains and we feel good. Conversely, the frustration of our desires starves us of dopamine, causing anxiety and fear.

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One of the greatest desires is romantic love – the long-lasting, “till death do us part” kind. It’s no surprise, then, that romantic love is sustained, at least in part, through the constant flow of dopamine released in the presence – real or imagined – of our true love. Loss of romantic love cuts off that supply of dopamine, which is why it feels like you’re dying – your brain responds by triggering all sorts of anxiety-related responses.

Herein lies obsession, as we go to ever-increasing lengths in search of that dopamine reward. Stalking specialists warn against any kind of contact with a stalker, positive or negative, because any response at all triggers that reward mechanism. If you let the phone ring 50 times and finally pick up on the 51st ring to tell your stalker off, your stalker gets his or her reward, and learns that all s/he has to do is wait for the phone to ring 51 times.

Romantic love isn’t the only kind of desire that can create this kind of dopamine addiction, though – as Captain Ahab (from Moby Dick) knew well, any suitably important goal can become an obsession once the mind has established ownership.

The Neurology of Ownership

Ownership turns out to be about a lot more than just legal rights. When we own something, we invest a part of ourselves into it – it becomes an extension of ourselves.

In a famous experiment at Cornell University, researchers gave students school logo coffee mugs, and then offered to trade them chocolate bars for the mugs. Very few were willing to make the trade, no matter how much they professed to like chocolate. Big deal, right? Maybe they just really liked those mugs![2]

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But when they reversed the experiment, handing out chocolate and then offering to trade mugs for the candy, they found that now, few students were all that interested in the mugs. Apparently the key thing about the mugs or the chocolate wasn’t whether students valued whatever they had in their possession, but simply that they had it in their possession.

This phenomenon is called the “endowment effect”. In a nutshell, the endowment effect occurs when we take ownership of an object (or idea, or person); in becoming “ours” it becomes integrated with our sense of identity, making us reluctant to part with it (losing it is seen as a loss, which triggers that dopamine shut-off I discussed above).

Interestingly, researchers have found that the endowment effect doesn’t require actual ownership or even possession to come into play. In fact, it’s enough to have a reasonable expectation of future possession for us to start thinking of something as a part of us – as jilted lovers, gambling losers, and 7-year olds denied a toy at the store have all experienced.

The Upshot for Goal-Setters

So what does all this mean for would-be achievers?

On one hand, it’s a warning against setting unreasonable goals. The bigger the potential for positive growth a goal has, the more anxiety and stress your brain is going to create around it’s non-achievement.

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It also suggests that the common wisdom to limit your goals to a small number of reasonable, attainable objectives is good advice. The more goals you have, the more ends your brain thinks it “owns” and therefore the more grief and fear the absence of those ends is going to cause you.

On a more positive note, the fact that the brain rewards our attentiveness by releasing dopamine means that our brain is working with us to direct us to achievement. Paying attention to your goals feels good, encouraging us to spend more time doing it. This may be why outcome visualization — a favorite technique of self-help gurus involving imagining yourself having completed your objectives — has such a poor track record in clinical studies. It effectively tricks our brain into rewarding us for achieving our goals even though we haven’t done it yet!

But ultimately, our brain wants us to achieve our goals, so that it’s a sense of who we are that can be fulfilled. And that’s pretty good news!

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Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

Reference

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