Publish at March 14 2023 Updated March 14 2023

Three tips to be independent from social networks

Digital technology is not all good

"Addictions", this word instinctively evokes the excessive ingestion of one or more chemical substance(s) that we can no longer do without[1].

Restricting this word to this definition alone is no longer appropriate because the twenty-first century corresponds to the digital era and an increased use of social networks, a use that tends, on the one hand, to fray social ties, i.e., that integration into a group is based on superficial identity, and on the other hand, that we are facing an effective addiction to these means of communication. What does this directly lead to?

As a result, there is an erosion of social relationships that are characteristic of a physical isolation, perceptible by the advent of a head down generation, hooked on the phone, and more interested in dealing with virtual life and not with their life in their real environment. And yet, there is nothing worse than missing out on your life! That's why here I offer some strategies to help students increase their independence from social networks.

1-Planning time 

Planning is "organizing one's time, one's activities according to a certain plan" ( Larousse) in advance. It is to develop a specific plan in order to achieve a goal. This process relies mainly on time, duration. Taking this into account, we can define planning as the ability of an individual to respect the time allotted for the completion of a task.

Its particularity lies in the fact that it grants the possibility to better manage time and to be more productive. Taking into account this temporal data in order to make students independent to social networks, is an interesting strategy as soon as they have to impose a certain discipline on themselves regarding the use of these networks. Indeed, what is far from imagining is that the frequent and uncontrolled use of these networks causes mental disorders such as depression, fear of missing out[3] when offline, loneliness;  hence the need to impose a certain conduct to adopt.

In fact, a study conducted by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania shows that, limiting the time reserved for the use of social networks to 30 minutes drastically reduces the risk of depression and loneliness[4]. It should be noted that these symptoms are manifestations of a lack that people addicted to these entities manifest. This implies that, if the time allowed to use social networks is defined beforehand, there is a strong chance to limit or even avoid cases of addiction to these networks.

Besides limiting the time of use of social networks as a factor of freedom,  another non-negligible action can equally provide solutions to this addiction  namely: the preference of outdoor activities and board games.

2-Preferring outdoor activities and board games

Arriving at disconnection is a great challenge for people with social network addiction. If originally, this communication tool had the ambition to meet people, nowadays, this phenomenon traps young people in the screens and it becomes their main means of socialization[5]. And yet, a multitude of activities aiming not only to strengthen family and friend ties, but also to control their environment exist. This is the case of outdoor activities and board games.

The first activity has the benefit of allowing young people to expend themselves through traditional games such as perched cat, hide and seek, climbing, among others. These activities are useful in that they help children maintain good health because being active keeps obesity at bay[6]. This would mean that young people who make social networks their main occupation are likely to develop it since most of the time they are sitting and producing gestures that do not require effort.

As for the second activity, board games have the particularity of developing the logical mind, memory, attention span and fine motor skills via the manipulation of pawns, cards and dice[7]. 7] These abilities are not available to young people who use social networks because, when they are used, cognitive and physical activities are at their lowest. This is especially true since what captures the attention of young internet users is liking, sharing and posting information[8].

In contrast, board games and outdoor activities provide added value to young people in terms of skills. So much so that these activities demand a strong involvement from young people, it would certainly not occur to them to check the latest information that virtual friends would have posted. This attention towards the somewhat obliterated life of the other, translates a real malaise which is that of lack of self-confidence.

3-Working on self-confidence

In a virtual society where some people are tempted to almost invent lives for themselves to exist, the excessive use of social networks can translate a lack of self-confidence. Indeed, the lack of self-confidence comes at a time when one is tempted to present to his followers on the one hand, a life somehow invented and which has no relation to what the Internet user really is and, on the other hand, we note the mania of always wanting to improve his image through applications to look more beautiful or handsome before posting them, even if in the end, the only result we get is to resemble a person other than ourselves.

In effect, the teenager is trying to assert himself through social networks. Which is not bad in itself. But the snag comes at the moment when one wants to shape an image through the eyes of others. Which approach reflects a deep malaise, which makes the young teenager vulnerable to the gaze of others and disturbs his construction as a young adult: it is the beginning of depression[9].

However, accepting oneself as one is (knowing one's limits and assets) avoids locking oneself into a logic of building oneself as the other would like us to be, which limits dependence on the gaze of the other. The fact is that the more we would like to be as the other would like to perceive us, the less chance we have to live our life. This is the reason why we are seeing more and more virtual harassment. Given the importance of this problem, this article is an invitation to educators to take more precautions to improve the lives of young people. We could also incorporate teaching units that address the ideal use of social networks.


Fátima Servián Franco, 2022, "Social Network Addiction," Our Thoughts, online

Goldschmidt Cathérine, 2017, "Board Games," online

YouthandMedia, "Social Networks," online,,et%20partagent%20leurs%20propres%20photos

LB, 2021, "The Impact of Social Networks on Self-Esteem", online

Ludwig Hervé, 2018, "limiting social network use to 30 minutes a day would reduce the risk of depression," online,

Neokids Montessori, 2021, "the benefits of outdoor activities for children," online

Noovo moi, 2020, "the impact of social networks on our lives," online,to%20find%20a%20job

Toutcomment, 2017, "How Social Networks Affect Youth," online

Vincent, 2017, "social networks: opportunity or threat to the social bond?", Courant-actuel , online, 


[1]Fátima Servián Franco, 2022, "addiction to social networks," Our Thoughts, online,

[2]Vincent, 2017, "social networks: opportunity or threat to the social bond? ",current-actual, online,

[3]Noovo moi, 2020, "the impact of social networks on our lives," online,,to%20find%20a%20job

[4] Hervé Ludwig, 2018, "Limiting Social Networking to 30 Minutes a Day Would Reduce Risk of Depression," online, https://urlz.en/kut0

[5]Toutcomment, 2017, "how social networks affect young people," online,

[6]Neokids Montessori, 2021, "the benefits of outdoor activities for children," online,

[7] Catherine Goldschmidt, 2017, "board games," online,

[8] Youth and Media, "social networks," online,

[9] LB, 2021, "the impact of social networks on self-esteem," online,

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