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

This past New Year’s, I made a resolution to spend less time on social media. Since coming to college, I noticed the ways social media seemed to consume my life. I spent hours just scrolling through my feed, and I was constantly worried about my posts and what other people were posting. However, these problems inflated whenever I used the app TikTok.

During my free time, I would waste time scrolling through TikTok. Hours would go by, and I still wouldn’t realize how much time I spent on the app. TikTok creates a “For You Page” that is heavily catered to a user’s interests. Sometimes, I would spend hours doomscrolling after exposure to videos and subjects that upset me the most. Not to mention, the amount of drama provoked through TikTok, whether it’s between celebrities or people I knew personally, was draining to see so often. 

The world of TikTok seems to be its own little bubble. Much like YouTube, people can now create very successful livelihoods through it. The most popular people seem to be “influencers” from TikTok, making people feel like if they are not successful by the age of 20 they are just not doing enough. In a way, being away from TikTok feels like being away from a huge part of the world, so here is what my life has been like without TikTok:

Not Caught up with the trends

TikTok, being one of the most popular apps among teens, has a new person, item of clothing, or concept trending every day. There are many events in pop culture that I have no knowledge of. Many of my friends with TikTok often see the same viral video, and there is no other outlet where I can see the same videos as rapidly. To some extent, I miss seeing some of the content that I could access so easily through TikTok, and a part of me does feel like I’m missing out on a lot.

Less Time spent on social media

Like I mentioned before, TikTok caters to your interests. It was incredibly easy to lose myself in what I was watching. Since not having it, I am more conscious about the time I am spending on social media. There are other social media apps that I still have that simply aren’t as time-consuming. Additionally, making a TikTok takes a lot of effort. The fact the app is centered around only videos is more time-consuming in itself. Depending on what you like to post, some TikTok videos may require editing, multiple takes, etc.

Relief from anxiety

Since deleting TikTok, my social-media-related anxiety has gone down tremendously. Don’t get me wrong, as long as I have any social media, there’s always anxiety that comes with it. However, in other apps, the feed is more suited to the people you follow. TikTok’s unique abundance of short and spontaneous videos shifts your attention to many different topics in a short amount of time. After deleting the platform, it was difficult to find something as stimulating as TikTok, but I was able to stop wanting it with time. Along with that, I never feel like I’m falling behind on all of the fashion micro-trends TikTok creates, and I don’t find myself obsessing over drama that doesn’t affect me.

For most, TikTok is a fun app that allows for people to create whatever content they desire. Social media is made to be addicted to, so it won’t be easy. Personally, I believe TikTok was too much for me, and I think deleting it was the right decision.

Annabella Lanzinger is from Akron, Ohio, but currently lives in Orlando. She is a first-year student at UCF with a Political Science major. She enjoys reading and writing and hopes to use those skills in her future career as a lawyer.