Social media addiction is nothing new but it can wreak havoc in a person’s life who is in the early stages of recovery. Technology may contribute to new addictions as well. It may be hard to differentiate addiction with people who use social media more often than others. When overcoming social media addiction, it helps to learn strategies to connect with friends offline.
Reality of Addiction
Social media is relatively new but within two decades it has taken over many people’s lives and time. It is the subject of much debate as well as increasing the need for addiction treatment even if it is not included in the current DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Disorders) as its own disorder. It can have far reaching, negative consequences for individuals who become addicted.
Friends make their lives online now. It is common to find people connecting mostly online and without carrying it into offline relationships. People who are working through recovery from social media addiction are not able to use social media as a tool or resource for connecting with others in the same way people who are not addicted might. The focus then becomes, how to get reconnected with people who are in the current circle of friends or even make new ones without the use of social media. Some helpful tips may include the following:
Build new relationships: many avenues exist in recovery circles for making new friends. It takes times and sometimes luck, but it also takes perseverance. It takes showing up to meetings, going out of one’s way to find new friends and seeking avenues of meeting people.
Find a hobby: hobbies are easy to find as there are dozens around. The key is to locate a few that are of specific interest and start attending places where those things are being done. Whether it is stamp collecting, reading books, writing or doing other activities such as exercising and hiking there are many places to find others who will share similar interests.
Pick up the phone: calling friends has been relegated to messaging or texting. For individuals with social media addiction it can feel lonely if ‘everyone else’ is on social media but it may be beneficial to pick up the phone and call people. Set aside time to make important calls to friends and seek out friendships. It may just be eagerly reciprocated on the other end to find a person who is not using social media to connect.
Don’t give up. It may feel difficult early on but it does get easier. Keep pushing through and working with the tools and resources provided in support groups or through therapeutic help. It can be beneficial to seek out these individuals for help when getting stuck or feeling lonely since this can be a trigger for relapse.
The Villa is committed to helping people struggling with addiction issues. Call us to find out how we can support your journey to health and recovery from addiction.