10 Social Media Habits for the Serious Student
Students — particularly high school students — are better versed in the world of social media than perhaps any other demographic. It is a fluid part of their every day lives. But social media also comes with a dark side — a side that can impair one’s ability to get a good job or reach their full potential. To assist students in keeping on the right path amid Facebook/Snapchat/Twitter usage, we’ve put together the following 10 social media habits that every serious student should keep in mind. Let’s get started!
1. Limit usage.
Moderation is always a good idea when it comes to social media activities. Unfortunately, it’s just so easy to keep scrolling. Social networks often suck you in with their ease of navigation, and the larger your network grows, the harder it is to pull yourself out of it because you’re always finding something new of interest. The best thing you can do is not to say, “No more Facebook or [insert social network of choice here].” Instead give yourself permission to use it, but make sure that permission follows a strict amount of time.
2. Focus on one platform at a time.
Many students jump back and forth from one network to another. This only compounds the amount of time spent on social media, leading to less time focusing on important things like actual life experiences or preparing for that big exam. If you’re going to do social media, try to focus only on one platform at a time. If you’re going to do Snapchat, then forget about Twitter and Facebook for a while. When you’re ready to go back to one, leave the other behind.
3. Share every post as if your parents are watching.
If it’s online, it’s not private, period. Students must realize that they have to start sharing posts in a way that encourages accountability. That’s why we always say to share posts as if your parents (or a future employer) is watching. You don’t want something you posted foolishly years ago to derail your chances for a great job later in life.
4. Don’t get sucked into no-win situations.
You probably know what we’re talking about here — stupid arguments that waste your time, get you angry, and create rifts between you and your friends. There is simply no “winning” when it comes to arguing with someone on Facebook or another social media channel. This is important to keep in mind as we head into an election season.
5. Use each shared link as an opportunity to research.
People share a lot of falsehoods on social media. Be responsible. If something sounds crazy, then check your facts before passing it along. The only way that society will get better is if we stop basing our opinions on lies and made-up stories.
6. Try to go at least one day a week without using it.
If you can cut out social media one day per week on a routine basis, then you’ve sent a message that you are stronger than the addicting allure of the networks. It is definitely a moral victory, but it is also an opportunity to replace that time with something more constructive.
7. Look at it as a resume.
Social media can be a greatly beneficial tool if you think of it as a resume. Try to be structured with your “About” or “Bio” pages. Let people know what you are doing and not what you were doing two years ago. Keeping your social networking pages updated is a great way to easily and effectively submit resumes for attractive job opportunities.
8. Purge your friends every so often.
Getting real value out of your networks means ridding yourself of the people, who are simply padding your numbers. It isn’t a personal thing (at least, it doesn’t have to be). With more networks limiting the visibility of your friends’ activities, it’s important that you police your lists to ensure you are only seeing things from the people, organizations, and groups that matter to you.
9. Take advantage of its benefits.
Want to schedule an upcoming event and let all your friends know? Perhaps you just want to use it to create a permanent collection of all your favorite photos and videos. There are real benefits to social media. Tap into those!
10. Don’t forget to live life.
Far too many people never stop “Facebooking” long enough to enjoy their lives. Go to any concert, and you will see a bunch of people with their phones out instead of actually dancing to the music. We spend so much time “capturing” life on camera that we forget to experience it. Don’t fall into that trap. Enjoy every moment that you have with the people you care about. The human brain is still far better at preserving memories than any device.
As you enter into the holidays, you’re going to have a lot more time on your hands to do the things that you want to do. Naturally, that means you’ll also have more social media time. That’s okay. Just make sure that you keep in mind what’s really important. Start by putting the 10 suggestions above to good use!
[Image via Wrong Hands]