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What Setting a Time Limit on TikTok Did for Me

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Holy Cross chapter.

I want to start this article off by saying that I am in no way claiming that I’m any better than my peers.…..I definitely enjoy TikTok just as much as the next person!! I have a crazy-high screen time average every week and sad to say, I am obsessed with my phone. However, after I had learned that some of my friends set time limits on their social media (some even went so far as to delete certain apps), it got me thinking!!! 

I have always known that TikTok has both negative and positive effects on me. The popular app either makes me cry laughing, or just downright makes me cry. A lot of the time, I find myself constantly scrolling through and comparing myself to other girls I see on the screen. This cycle certainly wasn’t healthy for me, and while I was fully aware of that, for some reason I kept scrolling away. Because Tik Tok shifts your focus constantly from each video to the next, I continued to allow the side effects to occur. I would scroll away, in hopes that the next video would be a funny one, or even just one to boost my self confidence a tiny bit.  Despite this hope, it usually wasn’t!!!

I started my time limit at 15 minutes a day. I felt this gave me enough time to skim through for a bit and even check on the people I follow. I also use the app as a resource for happenings in pop culture, what to do/where to go when I am exploring new places, or fashion inspiration.  I figured this 15 minute allotment would suffice for covering all my bases without getting caught in the rabbit hole!

After limiting my time, I noticed a lot of things improving for me. First, I wasn’t as consumed by my phone. I would still be online a decent amount of time, but the “mindless scrolling on TikTok” had stopped. Coincidentally, my time would be UP after I completed all the USEFUL things that I wanted to do on the app, preventing me from getting caught in the depths.

Secondly, I felt so much better about myself – I stopped comparing myself to other girls (most of whom were complete strangers). Whether it be their figures, their lifestyle, or their productivity…you name it, I was comparing!!  Once I didn’t have time to do this, I just naturally gained more self confidence and security in myself.

Thirdly, I re-discovered some interests of mine, such as reading. Reading for pleasure is now one of my favorite hobbies – I love just chilling with a good book in my downtime.  It’s so relaxing and my mind only wanders to where I want it to!! While I use TikTok to find my next good read, I make sure it’s within my 15 minutes!

Lastly, I find myself being able to go on the app and enjoy it more. Since I have to be selective on how I use it, I definitely utilize the more informative/positive aspects of it.  I have even noticed that when I come across things that I USED to explore that I know would have eventually brought me down..…..I just pass right over it. .

Like any shift in routine, there are going to be days when you don’t stick to the limit- we are all human!  I would say I exceed my time limit up to three or four times a week at this point, but it was this self induced time limit that enabled me to form a healthier relationship with my use of TikTok in the first place.  Whether you find yourself in a similar boat with TikTok, or any other social media platform,  I highly encourage setting time limits. As long as you can remember that no one is perfect and it is ok to “ignore” it some days, you too can enjoy the positives of social media.

Hi! I am a freshman from Reading, MA. I love beauty, reading, fashion, and more :)