Are You Addicted to Facebook?

With 1.79 billion active users, Facebook is the leading social media platform in the world. It’s a great way to stay up to date with family and friends, share cute photos of your fur babies, meet new people, and even grow and audience for your business or trade. However, are people taking it too far?

Usage of the social platform has been fueled by gratification from “likes” and peoples’ competitive nature. Users are starting to compare their lives, attractiveness, financial stance, and intelligence with others, turning what seems like harmless internet usage into an actual addiction.

The amount of time each Facebook user spends online has continued to grow over the years. But, how much time is this, exactly? The average user spends 50 minutes a day on Facebook. That may not sound like much, but when you think about how much free time you have each day, you might change your mind. The recommended amount of sleep an adult should get each night is 8 hours, and a full-time employee will work 8 hours a day. That’s 16 hours of your day already, with another 50 minutes taken from Facebook.

How is the rest of your day spent? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average time spent watching television and movies is 2.8 hours a day
Eating and drinking – 1.07 hours
Reading – 19 minutes
Exercise – 17 minutes
Social events – 4 minutes

The average person spends more time on Facebook than reading, exercising or socializing in real life events. So, are you addicted to Facebook?
Researcher in Norway, Dr. Cecilie Andraessen and colleagues have made a psychological scale, measuring Facebook addiction. This measure is called BFAS, Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale.

To take the quiz, answer each question with 1-5, then tally your answers.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

You spend a lot of time thinking about Facebook or planning how to use it.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

You feel an urge to use Facebook more and more.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

You use Facebook in order to forget about personal problems.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

You have tried to cut down on the use of Facebook without success.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

You become restless or troubled if you are prohibited from using Facebook.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

You use Facebook so much that it has had a negative impact on your job/studies.
1 = Very rarely
2 = Rarely
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Very often

6-16 points
Normal

17-20 points
Possible Facebook Addict

21+ points
Facebook Addict
If you think you could possibly be addicted to Facebook, try to be more conscious of how often you use it. Deleting the app from your mobile device may prove to be a helpful first step. You may also consider setting a time limit for yourself. However, this must be enforced and will require a lot of self-control and discipline on your part.

Taking a few small steps to becoming less indulgent on social media will prove to have lasting benefits. You may find you have more free time to enjoy personal relationships, discover new hobbies and interests, or simply be able to enjoy real life socializing, without digital detachment. Time is precious, and a lot can be accomplished with an extra 50 minutes a day. Don’t let “following” somebody else’s life distract you from living yours. How will you choose to spend your extra time?