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Signs You Might Be Addicted to Social Media

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By Russell Holloway
Christian Counseling Finder Co-founder


Social media at its best facilitates relationships and the easy communication of information. At its worst, social media distracts us from meaningful interactions with the people who populate our real life.

When we turn on our computers or smart phones, we are always at risk of sacrificing important relationships on the cybernetic altar of Internet compulsion.

There is a growing body of evidence that social media dependence is more about the pursuit of powerful chemicals released into the brain while using the Internet, like dopamine and oxytocin, than any advantages gained through social connection or easy access to information.

Here are some of the signs that you may be addicted to social media.


  1. The first thing you do in the morning is check your social media for likes or comments to resent social media posts. (It is these positive affirmations that release reward chemicals into your brain and foster dependence on different social media platforms.)


  1. The fun things you do with friends and family feel incomplete or invalid if they are not recorded by you and affirmed by others on social media. There is an unspoken belief that if no one likes it, it didn’t happen.


  1. Your primary means to cope with boredom or inactivity is to reach for your computer or phone and manage your social media footprint. You start to lose your ability to entertain yourself without social media.


  1. You consistently reach for your phone during meal times, ignoring or minimizing your interactions with the people right in front of you. You give up normal interactions to pursue a social media high.


  1. You check your phone while driving or while stopped at a red light, even when you know such behavior is dangerous for you, your passengers and other drivers. 

When your brain is dependent on social media it is searching for powerful chemicals released through social media engagement. Social media is no longer about relationships or access to information, it is about getting rewarded by these chemicals. Counseling is one option to gain help to overcome social media dependence. Next post we will discuss ways to lower or eliminate social media dependence.

Russell Holloway is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Daytona Beach Florida and Co-Founder of




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