Okay, what we’re talking about again is dopamine detox. Okay, we’re talking about the actual neuroscience of a dopamine detox. How to avoid Social media addiction? So let me give you guys a quick summary.
How can I know if I have a social media addiction?
The three things that I look for when I’m thinking about recommending a dopamine detox are:
- You are compelled towards behavior that you don’t enjoy.
- There is a war in your brain between the things that you know you should be doing, and the but you can’t, what you should do always loses the like this impulsive, like behavioral, like fast food kind of enjoyment sort of thing? So I should be working on my resume, but I’m just going to cue for a game of algorithms, a league, or whatever.
- The last thing is that activities that seem pleasurable to other people don’t seem to be as enjoyable to you.
So if you kind of check those three boxes, and you have a constant constant stream of like dopaminergic activity, like video games, or social media or Reddit or whatever, then you may be right for dopamine detox.
How to avoid Social media addiction?
Okay, so how do you do dopamine detox, remember that the first thing is that what we want to do is give our brain a chance to down-regulate the receptors. So what we’re talking about is probably a two-week minimum of dopamine detox, okay? Otherwise, your receptors aren’t gonna doubt like, they’re not going to upregulate the way that they should. That’s the first thing.
The second thing to understand is that the main problem with dopamine detox is boredom. So what I want y’all to mentally prepare yourselves for is that the way that your dopamine circuitry is wired, things that should feel pleasurable are not going to feel pleasurable. So what you’re going to deal with is two weeks of boredom, that’s the raid boss, okay? It’s not about withdrawal. It’s not about like, you know, sweats, or like, you’re just going to be bored. So you need to be mentally prepared that what you’re going to be fighting against is boredom. Okay?
Minimize your dopaminergic activity:
The next thing to consider is that what we want to try to do is minimize our dopaminergic activity. And what I mean by dopaminergic activity doesn’t mean that you actually can’t have fun. What I want you all to minimize is that compulsive behavior that you don’t enjoy. Video games, social media, content aggregation, so steer clear of Reddit, YouTube, things like that.
Some things that involve technology are totally fine, like so for example, if you want to watch a movie, even watch one movie every day, I think that’s fine. time-limited, not like constant scrolling stuff, time-limited, enjoyable activities, even involving technology are completely fine. You want to steer clear of the stuff that your brain is focusing out on, so don’t binge-watch a TV show. No scrolling on your phone while you’re watching like Netflix or Amazon Prime or something like that. No binge-watching anime. You want to watch a Naruto movie. Like, Go for it. It’s not going to be fun. Either way, whether your dopamine system is messed up or not. Right? So you can watch a movie like by all means go for it. No big deal.
So, dopamine detox for two weeks, the main thing that you’re going to have to deal with is boredom. You want to cut out dopaminergic activities. So these are like the the the dirty, like the McNuggets of dopamine that you do, right? So like content aggregation, video games, even stuff like twitch like discrete technological activities that are highly enjoyable and like a short, limited period are fine. If you want to watch one movie a day, go for it.
Having a schedule:
Since boredom is your enemy, planning out your day is going to be a huge part of it. Okay? Books, audiobooks, doing stuff in nature cleaning, cooking, adopt a skill like a learning program or something like that those kinds of things are going to be your Bastion. So what I would say is like, you know, on a, let’s say, you want to start on the weekend. So Friday evening, what you’re going to do is grocery shopping, and you’re going to plan out your meals for like Saturday and Sunday, you’re going to plan out, okay, like, this is what I’m going to do in the morning. This is what I’m going to do in the afternoon. Get yourself like a good audiobook, okay? So like good audiobooks are going to be important for, relatively boring activities.
So while you’re cleaning your kitchen, like listening to an audiobook, find a good podcast, you want to be like doing stuff. And the more that you pack your day, the better off it’s going to be in terms of like, you know, not relaxing, because remember that when you relapse, what’s going to happen is your mind is going to be bored. And before you realize that you’re going to pick up your phone and you’re just going to be like on Twitch or whatever, or YouTube or whatever.
Okay, so social activities are also really good. So like, I think board game night, totally fine, like by all means get together with a few of your buddies, play some Terraforming Mars, like play d&d, like go for it like a good six, eight-hour session of d&d with people ideally in person, because you got to be careful about computers because it’s really easy to open up tabs when you get bored and things like that. So I’d steer clear of that. But like, it’s totally fine to do fun activities.
I think if you want to do something like go camping like that’s the perfect time to do a dopamine detox because you got to do things like pitching your tent. And like, you know, making your food and then like, you know, like changing and like camping, like has stuff involved. So spending time in nature, going hiking, are fantastic opportunities to do dopamine detoxes.
Remove social media apps:
So if you guys are doing something like going on a ski trip, or going on vacation, this is a good opportunity for you to take stuff off of your phone, right? Like remove Reddit from your phone, remove all that stuff. If you have something like a tablet, by all means, download, three movies over a week. And that’s like what you’re going to watch. But you’re not going to like stream random crap. Okay.
The next thing to remember is that unstructured time is the primary source of failure in dopamine detox, okay, when your mind is bored, and you don’t have something planned, it’s way too easy to like, dig into the easy dopamine source.
Having friends with the same interests:
Alright, So the next thing to kind of think about is that if you guys are running into trouble, I recommend doing it with friends. Now you don’t have to do this necessarily with in-person friends, but I’d find like two or three people, like, you know, maybe like sometimes people will like to get together with people on discord and things like that, where, you know, you’ll kind of decide, okay, we’re going to dopamine detox from, you know, June 9 to June 20. Okay, or June 22, whatever. And then people kind of plan out, okay, what’s your plan? Let’s like, read a book together, meet every day on Discord.
Avoid switching on auto pilot:
The last kind of tip is to remember, the more accessible the dopaminergic activities are, the easier it is going to be to relapse. So what you want to do, and this is kind of interesting, if you look at the research, a lot of relapses are not planned out their impulse decisions, if you look at alcohol, relapses, for example, if you go to a party and they ask you do you want to drink? And it’s like an impulsive decision. That’s like, sure. Everyone else is having a beer like, why can’t I have a beer too? And then it’s like boom, relapse.
Make social media websites less accessible:
So what you want to do is increase the activation energy and make things less accessible: uninstalling video games, and then like, at least you have that amount of time. So let’s say let me uninstall everything, and then I like to start reinstalling it when I relapse. But then I’ve got like a 1530 minute window where I can still like, catch myself, right? I can get out of the house, I can go for a walk, I can even cancel the installation. You want to give yourself time and so uninstalling the crap, uninstalling the dopaminergic activities, log out of like your Netflix account, like log out of your Reddit account. Like if you want to you can even use websites that block things like Reddit and stuff like that, go for it or tools. And so that’s kind of a dopamine detox.
What results I will get?
Two weeks highly structured activities, plan what you’re going to do cooking, cleaning, traveling nature books, audiobooks, some kind of creative work if you want to learn a skill and kind of tell yourself okay, at the end of two weeks, you would learn many things that will make your life much better.