How to Avoid Social Media Burnout

Last weekend, I went golfing. In fact, I played 27 holes in one day.

I’m not a particularly enthusiastic golfer these days. When I do golf, my interest starts to fade after about 12 holes. In fact, it’s my opinion that if golf were 12 holes rather than 18, it would probably a more enjoyable sport.

While golf may not be my cup of tea, playing that much golf forced me not to think about work. It’s difficult to do when you’re trying to get a tiny white ball into a small hole, while hanging out with friends who want to talk about other things than social media.

Social media can be terribly consuming, particularly if it’s how you make a living. It can be a non-stop 24/7 world with constant demands on your time, as well as mental and physical energy.

This can make it very easy to get a bad case of social media burnout. When it’s all social media all the time, it is difficult to keep going for long periods of time.

This makes getting away from social media so important and necessary. It is just not viable to continually think about, create and consume social media without taking a break – no matter how smart or proficient you are.

While social media burnout doesn’t get a lot of attention, it’s a fact of life. At some point, you will get to a point where the job stops being enjoyable. It becomes work, and the work is all about feeding the machine that doesn’t sleep.

So how can you prevent yourself from social media burnout?

Perhaps the easier thing is walking away from the screen – and not just for a few minutes.

It means doing something that physically and mentally takes you away from tweets, updates, posts, comments and likes. It could be golfing, fishing, reading, spending time with friends and family, playing sports, cooking or going out for dinner.

Whatever you do, it’s not social media – and that’s a good thing.

No matter what anyone tells you, doing or even thinking about one thing most of the time isn’t a healthy way to live. It is not physically or mentally possible to have a full life when a single interest is always front and centre.

Yes, there are people who are happily online all the time but they are anomalies or freaks of nature.

The rest of us need time to do something else…even golfing.

One more thing: walking away from the screen doesn’t mean it’s okay to continually check your smartphone. If you’re doing something else, do something else rather than also doing social media.

The truth is social media will be waiting for you so give it and yourself a break.

11 Comments on “How to Avoid Social Media Burnout”

  1. Mark, just a comment not on the post (that I totally agree with) but on the blog’s post template. I had to look on the main page to see who had written this post. So perhaps you could add the author’s name on the post’s template as well?

  2. I don’t think this is strictly social media, but digital marketing in general. It is an ever changing field that unfortunately I have always said is analogous to the restaurant industry. I have gone out to dinner with people that act like running a restaurant and waiting tables is so easy yet they have never done it. Reminds me a lot of clients in the digital landscape. “I go to web sites, why can’t we do _____” or “I go to web sites, why can’t you have _____ done in two hours.” This type of demand makes it hard to draw those boundaries.

    1. Matt,

      I agree the expectations are sky-high given social media is so new, and the rules of engagement are still work in progress. It can lend itself to extreme behaviour.

      Thanks for the comment.

      Mark

  3. I think it’s more than social media or digital marketing burnout. For me, it’s periodic spells of all-things-digital burnout. Much of my work life and my personal life revolves around digital media and communications.

    What do I do? Just what you suggest. I walk away from the computer (including the mobile gadgets) and go hiking, cook, do crafts, read (the old school paper-based way), etc.

  4. Crazy. I can’t believe you wrote this today! I wrote a post that is a yin to your yang — Five steps to prepare you for the social meida marathon ( http://bit.ly/cEsV1z )

    Perhaps you can do some of these exercises as you recover from your burnout. : )

    Great post, Mark. Thanks.

  5. Mark,

    Golf should be 12 or 13 holes. I lose interest at the same place! I think it’s mostly because you get tired out. You wouldn’t think so, it just doesn’t seem like a strenuous sport, but you can burn 1300 calories, playing 18 holes. Fact!

  6. Great post

    I’d love to get the time to play 12 or 18 rounds. A three year old, and one on the way puts paid to that – plus I’m just too busy online!!!

  7. Pingback: The Dangers of Too Much Social Media | Mark Evans Tech

  8. Great post. It is true that social media can become so constant that it consumes most of your time. I feel that I am always thinking about what I can do next, or find myself constantly checking twitter for updates. Someones taking a break is good to refresh the mind!

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