Too much won't be good for youMay 12, 2017

If you happen to have a high level of dopamine, then it will depend on the situation. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter in your brain's so-called reward center. It puts you into a state of pleasure after you have a bite of chocolate. It gives you a feeling of joy after an hour (or so) of shopping. It also enables you to have a euphoria after winning in a slot machine. There's a common denominator among the three. Dopamine, also known as the motivation molecule, will be triggered by the brain if you're in an addictive mood. It's the same thing after being hooked to social media for hours.

There's nothing wrong about Facebook, as long as you have a small network of family members and friends. As a matter of fact, this can be another means of communication between you and the people that matter to you most. However, many social media users log in for the attention. It's only natural if you feel like posting a witty sentence (and wanting hundreds of users pressing the LIKE sign.). It will be another thing if you make a remark about your neighbour's Christmas costume, and it turns out that it's not. (Let's hope that your other neighbour would notice it, but didn't read your post.) It may be a nonsense observation on a kangaroo, even if you haven't seen one for ages. In other words, social media would be an alternative means of communication. It won't do you good.

Nothing beats the real thing. Addiction to social media will bring out your autistic habits, a result of wanting instant gratification. Teenagers and young adults are most susceptible to it, as social media is the IN thing. There are several ways to deal with it:

Make it a point to have a detox time every week. It means taking an hour or two from Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram every day, if not every week. It will be better if it will be a day or two. It will best if it will be weeks or a month at the most, as your mobile phone can come into place. (Keep in mind that your cell phone has never been a substitute.) If you hardly know your followers (or the users in your Facebook friends list), then it will be good for you not to expect too much from it. Disappointment might creep in before you know it. And you may have a hard time dealing with it.

Make time for your family and friends. You're a social creature, so spend time with your family. Set aside the other things for your mates. Nothing beats a good conversation, a bout of laughter, and beer (or wine).

Let's get physical. If you're having a euphoria, then you might want to sweat it off. This won't be an absurd idea, as you'll be motivated enough to engage in a cardiovascular activity for half an hour at the least. Spending several hours in social media will make you inactive, and doing it often can affect your health.

Spend more time with authors. When was the last time you finished reading a book? It would be a good time if you do it very soon. If you're an English major, then you can find some time to indulge on titles that are not part of your reading list. You're not required to write an essay, so there's no pressure on your part.

Do something else. If you haven't cleaned your room, then you don't have to wait for another day. If it's a clear, sunny day, then it will be a shame if you lie in your bed (or sit on the couch). You might want to check out the upcoming cultural events in your area. Anything but the computer. You can make an exception on your assignment(s), though.

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