Could you use an extra hour a day? How about feeling like your sense of well-being is enhanced? And what about spending more time socializing with real human, face-to-face interactions?
If you answered yes to any or all of these, new research suggests that quitting your relationship with Facebook is all it takes.
A study published earlier this month in the journal Science revealed that after just 4 weeks after disconnecting from Facebook, subjects reaped many positive benefits including having an average of 60 more minutes per day at their disposal.
The volunteers in the study spent more time socializing off-screen and reported that they felt that their well-being was better than before the study, in contrast to the people in the control group who still used Facebook. The volunteers were asked to give up Facebook for 4 weeks for a compensation of $102–but even after the study when the volunteers noticed a positive difference, they said they would do it again for even less money because of the effect that it created in their lives.
In addition to having more free time, spending more time socializing offline, and feeling better, the volunteers were less likely to feel that their views on politics were polarized. The only downside to the volunteers quitting Facebook was they were less informed about current news events; and it's been my experience that it is true that you lose some connection to news events. To remedy this, you just have to make a focus to go to news-worthy sites and get your news and current event news much in the same way we all used to read newspapers. In my experience, this drawback hasn’t been enough for me to go back to scrolling.
The volunteers in this study continued to use Facebook less than they had at the beginning of the study, even after the compensation had been removed. As trendy as Facebook seems, there are a lot of younger generations out there who aren’t using Facebook because they are beginning to recognize the constant barrage of ads and bot-generated content aimed to evoke reactions make social media sites not worth it anymore.
Wible, Brad. “Connected, but at What Cost?” Science, vol. 368, no. 6648, 17 Apr. 2020, p. 279., doi:10.1126/science.368.6488.279-a.