Thiag's blog

On the need for setting a limit for Twitter use

After growing tired of pointless arguments, and pictures of estranged friends watching movies and eating out, I quit Facebook a few years ago. I also read a lot about how social media makes us unhappy by influencing us to compare ourselves with others, decreasing our attention span, and pushes us to seek novelty and dopamine highs in some form or the other.

But I associate Twitter with work. This is how independent developers get their word out about their products, find people to work with, and get inspiration and advice for work, and life from people we like or look up to. I started using Twitter a month ago for the same reasons.

With my dislike towards social media, and knowledge about how it makes us unhappy, I thought I can use Twitter wisely — just the right dose to get only the good out of it and minimize the bad. Boy, I was wrong. Several times a day, my hand pulled out my mobile, and my finger tapped the Twitter app, and I looked at the bell icon, and then the feed, before even becoming aware of what I was doing.

I uninstalled the app and used it from the mobile browser. I didn’t even save my password. Even then, I checked out Twitter several times a day. Having to type my username and password was not powerful enough to discourage my Twitter use. I craved likes and attention. I realized I was spending more time on Twitter than I need to. I decided to use it once a week and then used it 15 extra times on that very same day. The problem was I wasn’t sincere about that limit. That was just a way of saying I will use it less, without being sincere about what is “less”.

I have decided to be sincere to that once-a-week limit. This seems to be sufficient to share if I have anything to say, and take a look at what others have to say. I might miss out on some great stories and advice, but that is okay. I will miss out on a large number of those stories anyway. This limit might be different for each of us — it may be once in two weeks, or once a day — or even 15 times a day if you are Donald Trump. But, if we don’t have a sincere limit, we will certainly use it more than what is necessary.

#Twitter #dopamine #Social media

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