This is an interesting article about a school in Silicon Valley.
You would think that leaders of companies like Google, Yahoo! and eBay would love for their children to have exposure to the latest tech devices like iPhones and Facebook.
But the school is just the opposite.
There are potentially many benefits to giving up social media and one is just having more time.
I’m not saying social media is a poor choice. I use it. I feel I’ve gotten value from it. I think it’s good to embrace new things.
But let’s see a few things we could be doing instead of checking our social feeds 14+ times per day and for 30-60 minutes per day.
1. Cat Nap
Nearly a third of people in the US don’t get enough sleep.
A good habit to kind of trick your body and mind into doing is to take a cat nap instead of checking social media.
Think about it, you’re taking about 2-3 minutes every time you check social media. Maybe more some of the time especially if you go down a rabbit hole.
That’s about 30-60 minutes of time you could spend just resting your mind. Close your eyes. Lay down. Take some deep breaths and do that for a few minutes instead.
We live in a crazy world where everyone is always on the go. Taking time to relax once in awhile can do wonders.
Walking 2 minutes out of every hour can increase your lifespan by 33%!
And this fits perfectly with your social media usage.
Instead of checking your Twitter feed just put your phone down and walk around for 2-3 minutes.
Or bank that time and go for a 30 minute walk each day during lunch or in the morning or after dinner.
And don’t bring that phone along on the walk. Take the time to observe the world around you.
Isn’t daydreaming bad?
It might not be…
Remember what we did before iPhones and computers?
Think back to the caveman days before they had all those distractions. They probably took a few moments out of every hour to just get lost in their thoughts.
Some of the best creative moments in human history have come from daydreaming. Being in nature can help. Getting lost in a daydream while walking is a great experience.
Not reading social media updates.
Now, I admit that I read a lot of articles and I find a lot of articles on social media.
I think reading articles is good. I’m probably not giving it up, but you could also read a book.
I’ve recently tried to give up TV. I’ve at least cut way back and I’ve increased my book reading and it’s been great. I feel like I get more enjoyment and enlightenment from reading books than by watching TV.
And the same is true with social media. I feel that with 30-60 more minutes each day I could a number of more books each month or year.
Although I have to admit that I’m bad at this one.
But talking with people is human nature. It’s a good thing.
So many couples or friends today can’t really talk to each other when they’re together. The phones inevitably come out and they’re checking for updates, usually on social media.
Put that media away and focus on the conversation you’re having with the other person.
6. Play A Game
You can keep your phone or computer for this one. Those things aren’t all bad.
One thing I’ve found to be good for my brain is to play crosswords on my phone. I subscribe to the New York Times Crossword on my phone.
Every day I look forward to opening it and testing my skills. My vocabulary improves. I probably learn too many worthless trivia question answers, but it works my brain.
It’s about 10-20 minutes per day (I can usually only solve the Monday and Tuesday ones, though).
You could do 3-5 more crosswords each day if you gave up social media.
7. Look At Faraway Things Outdoors
We spend a lot of our day looking at screens.
The science is mixed on how that affects our eyesight, but it seems that in one way or another we’re stressing our eyes in some fashion.
Our ancestors probably had to see danger coming from far off distances.
So it’s important to embrace that basic of human nature. Take a few minutes out of each hour to look at things that are far away.
Make it a little game. See if you can identify something out the window in the next building or across the field or wherever you are.
There are lots of good stretches you can do for your neck, your posture, you calves and more.
The calf one is really good.
Instead of checking social media, take a few minutes to stretch your calves.
James Altucher recommends writing down ideas…every day.
It really does seem that coming up with ideas is a muscle. I don’t know how to explain it, but it really is.
You become really good at coming up with ideas and in our world that’s usually a very valuable skill. And it doesn’t really take more than 20-30 minutes each day.
10. Be Grateful
We’re starting to learn more about the power of being grateful.
It has all kinds of health benefits.
And you become a better person and a person that others want to be around.
Every time you have an urge to check social media just pull up your Notes app instead and jot down a couple things you’re grateful for right now.
There are tons more that we could go over, but this is just a list to get started. You could say it was my Altucher 10 Ideas for the day.
I’m sure you can come up with more, but the takeaway is that without social media taking over your life for 30-60 minutes a day that you’re getting back to things that really matter and that are really productive.
It’s difficult. I know it. I’ll probably check Twitter shortly, but I see the value in cutting back on those social media habits.
Think about it…if the people creating social media don’t even want their kids using it then why would anyone else want to use it?