What’s your first stop when you open your internet browser? For so many members of our generation, it’s Facebook--logging on is more of a reflex than a choice. How many times have we pulled up Facebook for “five minutes?" As helpful as the social networking site can be for communication and coordination, it can also be a time vacuum, a procrastination enabler.
After twelve years of Facebook being available for general public use--the anniversary having just passed at the beginning of this month--most of us have no idea about the sum total of time that we have actually spent on the website. However, when it turned eleven years old last year, Time magazine created an app that would estimate the total amount of time a user has spent on Facebook. The numbers may just shock you into changing your ways.
Here’s some recommendations to help you make sense of your results, based on how much time you have spent using Facebook:
Zero to five days: Although it may seem bad that the amount of time you have spent on Facebook is measured in days, rather than hours, this is actually a fairly small amount of time. If you’ve spent five days on Facebook and had a Facebook for about five years, this means you’ve spent about four minutes per day on Facebook. Kudos to you! You’ve managed to keep those “five minute” Facebook breaks to literally five minutes. Congratulations.
Five to ten days: If you’ve spent five to ten days on Facebook, that’s still not too shabby. This means if you’ve been on Facebook for about five years, you’re still spending under ten minutes per day on Facebook. Clearly you’re still getting out there and living your life. Keep up the good work.
Ten to fifteen days: Even though 15 days only amounts to about 12 minutes per day over five years, this is still a fairly significant time investment. You may want to consider scaling back a little bit and keeping your Facebook breaks to five minutes. No need for drastic intervention.
Fifteen to twenty days: If you’re in this range, you should seriously considering scaling back. If you’ve spent 20 days on Facebook over the course of five years, that’s still only about 15 minutes a day. Clearly though, that time adds up. Imagine if you spent that fifteen at the Plex, studying or calling someone you care about. Proceed using Facebook with caution and be aware that you may be using it to procrastinate.
Twenty to twenty-five days: Being in this range means you’ve spent 15 to 20 minutes on Facebook over the course of five years. You’re actually fairly close to the average Facebook user. Time magazine estimated that the average Facebook user spends about 17 minutes per day on Facebook. While you may be average, that doesn’t mean you’re putting your time to good use. Cut back and put your time to better use!
Twenty-five to thirty days: If you’re here, you should change. Spending more than 20 minutes a day on Facebook is just not worth the investment! If you’ve spent this much time in approximately five years since you got your Facebook, imagine how much time you’ll have spent in your life if you keep at it.
More than thirty days: If you’re in this range, you should break up with Facebook. Think of all the other things you could have done with this time! You could have read so many interesting books, spent time reflecting on your life or even picked up a new hobby.
Challenge yourself by clicking here to see how much total time you have spent on Facebook. Then, do the math to see how much time you have spent per day. The numbers may shock you into changing your ways.