42 votes

Quitting Reddit follow up thread

Last week there was a discussion where a few folks took the plunge and quit reddit, including myself.

@acdw mentioned us having a ~noreddit community to support each other and I actually really liked the idea. But in lieu of that, I thought maybe a follow up thread might be a good idea. Just to see how everyone who quit reddit is doing, what challenges they've faced, and maybe share alternative ways to kill time.


For me, I've done pretty well. I've been to reddit a few times by accident (damn you, muscle memory!), scrolled a little, then remembered I quit. Then I mov on to something else. In its place I've spent a lot more time on twitter and medium. I have a very strong love/hate relationship with both of those sites. There's a lot of decent content there, but there's a ton of garbage to sift through. Very much like reddit in that regard, but not quite as easy to fine-tune, imo.

Anyone got any good recommendations?

50 comments

  1. nathan
    Link
    I missed the original thread, but I wanted to share my experience here in case it helps someone who was struggling quite a bit with internet addiction. I quit reddit 100% back in August, I was...
    • Exemplary

    I missed the original thread, but I wanted to share my experience here in case it helps someone who was struggling quite a bit with internet addiction. I quit reddit 100% back in August, I was really unhappy with how much of my time was spent just aimlessly looking at memes online and consuming digital carbs. I wrote down my schedule of when I would get up and get to work and how often I would take a break and it was just sad to see how much of my time was staring at my screen trying to get a hit of dopamine.

    I took the plunge of quitting reddit and hackernews, and for about 4 months I didn't look at either. As I don't have any other social media this basically meant that I had very little reason to use the internet (I wasn't active on Tildes at this time either). I eventually started dipping my toe in particular reddits of interest to me (/r/financialindependence), but I still limit it heavily. I would strongly recommend at least trying a few weeks of this detox, it did wonders for my ability to sit down and focus on something and quite a bit of time that I previously would have spent on reddit I was able to better spend elsewhere.

    I think the biggest lesson I would share from my experience is to set yourself up for success. On my work laptop, my personal laptop, my phone and my tablet I blocked reddit and hackernews at the domain level. On a laptop it's easy just edit the /etc/hosts file (or OS specific equivalent). For months after quitting I would hit ctrl+t and start typing in 'reddit.com/r/all', it took so long to break this habit I was starting to get concerned it would never go away. The other thing I did that made this attempt successful was to find something that scratched that free dopamine itch in the first few days, without it coming from the internet. In my case this was reading a fantasy series that was enjoyable but didn't take any mental effort to enjoy, similar to just scrolling reddit. I read the first three books in a week just because so much of my time that was previously internet went into this series. (Series is Cradle by Will Wight, recommend it if you're into progression fantasy, probably not otherwise). I also started reading magazines, The Economist, National Geographic, Scientific American.

    I don't think the specifics of the magazines were important I think for me they just filled two critical gaps. One they gave me something to do with my time that was as easy as reading reddit. Previously when I quit reddit I tried to use the time to do something hard, learn a new skill, deep clean my house, exercise rigorously. When those things got hard I gave up on both doing the hard thing and quitting the internet. Two is that they fulfilled a similar desire of reddit which is just to consume information, I like that about the internet of always being exposed to new information. This was something that was missing in my previous attempts and I think ended up being key in making this one stick longer term.

    The other thing I did was limit my screentime overall. I can't limit work, but I can track my phone's screentime and avoid my personal laptop if I so choose. I set a goal of having less than an hour of screen on time for my phone for a month. It ended up sticking for a long time, it's just now that I've slowly been ramping up on the screen time again, this time consuming various online news sources (and Tildes). It's something I'm keeping an eye on for now, but now I know the skills and challenges associated with quitting I don't think it will be quite so troublesome.

    In short, if you want to quit I would make sure you set yourself up for success by making it difficult to access reddit, and finding something similarly easy to replace the time. Identify what you miss about reading the internet and find something better to replace it.

    24 votes
  2. [10]
    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    This isn’t exactly related to quitting reddit but is very much in line with the themes of the comments here, so I figure it’s as good as any place to bring this up for a temperature check: Would...

    This isn’t exactly related to quitting reddit but is very much in line with the themes of the comments here, so I figure it’s as good as any place to bring this up for a temperature check:

    Would anyone be interested in participating in a sort of designated “screenless day”?

    It’s something I’ve been thinking about trying to organize for a while. I’m thinking it’s something we could set it up among us here at Tildes and shoot for, say, one day a month where we all agree to not turn on any of our screens and do literally anything else. The following day, once we come back online, we can talk about what we did, how it felt, etc.

    If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, let me know. I’d love to get a small group going and try it out.


    EDIT: Idea is a go! Here's a brainstorming thread for discussing its implementation.

    13 votes
    1. [2]
      georgebcrawford
      Link Parent
      YES. I'm not sure if I want my Kobo to count or not :-) I could definitely do a couple of days a week.

      YES. I'm not sure if I want my Kobo to count or not :-) I could definitely do a couple of days a week.

      5 votes
      1. Tardigrade
        Link Parent
        If you're allowing yourself to read normal books I'd let the kobo count. Maybe just turn the WiFi off.

        If you're allowing yourself to read normal books I'd let the kobo count. Maybe just turn the WiFi off.

        2 votes
    2. monarda
      Link Parent
      I voted and didn't comment, so here's the comment: Yes, I'd be interested.

      I voted and didn't comment, so here's the comment:
      Yes, I'd be interested.

      2 votes
    3. chrysanth
      Link Parent
      I'd also be in favor! This sounds like a lot of fun, and also a great way to hold myself to my goals of reducing screen time. As a student taking classes remotely, I do have to add that it might...

      I'd also be in favor! This sounds like a lot of fun, and also a great way to hold myself to my goals of reducing screen time. As a student taking classes remotely, I do have to add that it might be difficult to coordinate a day where everyone can be offline, since on Mondays for example I have got to be online for class. Just a minor scheduling challenge though, worst comes to worst we can just designate different days of the week for different groups of people if there's enough interest for that.

      2 votes
    4. [2]
      Pistos
      Link Parent
      I'd be interested in doing this, if for no other reason than the competitive nature in me wanting to rise to what would be (for me) a difficult challenge. My problem ("problem") is not so much...

      I'd be interested in doing this, if for no other reason than the competitive nature in me wanting to rise to what would be (for me) a difficult challenge. My problem ("problem") is not so much social media surfing, but gaming. (I see now that I'm replying to you 5 days later, so: if you already started some other post for this, please link back to it here in this thread.)

      2 votes
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        Brainstorming thread is this way! I forgot to edit it in to my original comment when I made the new topic. Sorry about that!

        Brainstorming thread is this way! I forgot to edit it in to my original comment when I made the new topic. Sorry about that!

        2 votes
    5. rogue_cricket
      Link Parent
      I would absolutely be down for this!

      I would absolutely be down for this!

      1 vote
    6. [2]
      rish
      Link Parent
      I’m up for this

      I’m up for this

      1 vote
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        I forgot to edit my comment here, but we've got a brainstorming thread up for anyone interested. Let me know there if you have any ideas for implementation!

        I forgot to edit my comment here, but we've got a brainstorming thread up for anyone interested. Let me know there if you have any ideas for implementation!

        2 votes
  3. [2]
    Addyct
    Link
    I wasn't in that thread but I also quit reddit last week, and made it public to hold myself to it. A couple days later, I also deleted all social media and news apps from my phone. I'm not...

    I wasn't in that thread but I also quit reddit last week, and made it public to hold myself to it. A couple days later, I also deleted all social media and news apps from my phone. I'm not forbidding myself from using social media, but I need to reset, and I also didn't want to use my free reddit energy to dive even deeper into doomscrolling on twitter.

    I'm not gonna lie, it's been tough. The first week or so I was constantly picking up my phone and catching myself trying to open reddit or twitter without even thinking of it. I mean, I'm still doing it, but a bit less. I don't know how I would describe it, but I do feel a bit more... Relaxed? I haven't completely shut myself off from the world since I still watch streams and YouTube and still use a few news aggregation sites to keep up with I need to know, but I've made a conscious effort to notice when I find myself mindlessly scrolling through something and cut it off.

    9 votes
    1. chrysanth
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      Yeah, it's so easy to just swap one service out for another. Glad I'm not the only one having trouble with that. Yep, I've been at it for about five weeks now and I still catch myself typing in...

      I also didn't want to use my free reddit energy to dive even deeper into doomscrolling on twitter.

      Yeah, it's so easy to just swap one service out for another. Glad I'm not the only one having trouble with that.

      The first week or so I was constantly picking up my phone and catching myself trying to open reddit or twitter without even thinking of it.

      Yep, I've been at it for about five weeks now and I still catch myself typing in "old.reddit.com" when I don't have any immediate stimulus on my screen, when the streamer I'm watching takes a five-minute break, when I decide the latest news article I mindlessly clicked on got boring, etc.

      7 votes
  4. [3]
    drannex
    Link
    As someone who infamously, hates, social media and tried to drive myself to not use it as much as possible here are a few of my basic tips: The most efficient way to quit, isn't necessarily to...

    As someone who infamously, hates, social media and tried to drive myself to not use it as much as possible here are a few of my basic tips:

    The most efficient way to quit, isn't necessarily to delete all social media, but make it more unusable and uninteresting. There are two ways you can do this: 1) Unfollow everyone and everything, this tends to cause empty feeds and continually reminding you why you are doing this or 2) Follow as many people as possible so far out of your comfort zone and full of such useless information (spam accounts, weird k-pop "stan" accounts, alternate political views that get your blood boiling, pop culture, &c) and every time you log in you will hate using social media until you just stop entirely. I would also suggest potentially changing all those apps languages to something you don't know, this will also change the 'trending' information to a country that doesn't speak your language (I usually go arabic or turkish).

    Another tip: Our brains love devouring information more than food, so get an RSS feed reader and start following topics and sources you love. There are no comments, no social interactions, just pure unadulterated news that you care about - I use Inorerader because it allows a mass amount of subscriptions without payment (although I do for some other features that aren't required), and it has an option so you can see full-texts of websites when their (most) RSS feeds don't (click W when you open an article) inside. Plus, they have some nice and swanky mobile apps.

    Those are some of my tips, I would also suggesting reading Dr. Cal Newport's book "Deep Work" to really get into the proper mindset, he isn't the greatest writer, and at times he just repeats himself, but the book has a lot of good science, history, and techniques.

    9 votes
    1. [2]
      chrysanth
      Link Parent
      Yeah, this worked well for me when I quit most of the dominant social media platforms about four years ago. Went down the list asking myself if I actually cared about any of the accounts I was...

      Unfollow everyone and everything, this tends to cause empty feeds and continually reminding you why you are doing this

      Yeah, this worked well for me when I quit most of the dominant social media platforms about four years ago. Went down the list asking myself if I actually cared about any of the accounts I was following, and, crucially, whether or not it was a good thing to be seeing them. For example, I "like" r/aboringdystopia, since it validates my feelings about how shitty the world has gotten, but fundamentally, it's a subreddit about reading sad things you can't do much about, so did I need it in my life? Was it making me happier? Not really. Sometimes I slip up due to the habit but for the most part I haven't missed it, or any of the other platforms I left.

      5 votes
      1. drannex
        Link Parent
        Something I should have mentioned above was there are a few subreddits that I enjoy (r/CoreCyberpunk, r/cyberdeck, r/trains) I load into my RSS reader (as mentioned above) and it keeps me in the...

        Something I should have mentioned above was there are a few subreddits that I enjoy (r/CoreCyberpunk, r/cyberdeck, r/trains) I load into my RSS reader (as mentioned above) and it keeps me in the loop and doesn't require me to scroll through reddit itself. it's really nice to treat some of those as just another blog in a way.

        validates my feelings about how shitty the world has gotten, but fundamentally, it's a subreddit about reading sad things you can't do much about, so did I need it in my life?

        Yeah, I had similar issues/admiration for that subreddit and some others that are similar. No point in focusing the negative even if it's true to an extent, just focus on the things you can change and feel good about. Healthier mind, healthier life and all that weird neo-hippy jazz.

        4 votes
  5. [2]
    JoylessAubergine
    Link
    I wasnt in that thread but i tried giving up Reddit for lent. I am addicted to it. There was a post by a Stanford Doctor about how her patients essentially hate scroll social media and don't get...

    I wasnt in that thread but i tried giving up Reddit for lent. I am addicted to it. There was a post by a Stanford Doctor about how her patients essentially hate scroll social media and don't get any enjoyment out of it yet cannot stop (Non-reddit link, direct to post) and it was me to a tee so i decided to give it up. I lasted a week before i caved in.

    There is just so much information on there that is only found on reddit. I know logically most isnt useful, its faux-entertaining noise that makes me feel smarter but without it, i feel like there is an entire world that i am missing. There is also the hate scrolling, finding the nonsense that "triggers" me, the corporate astroturffed posts, the nutty nationalists shitting up threads, the memes. I also missed the communities. Even the most awful meme filled ones are still better than nothing. I don't know where else i could talk about my hobbies and interests in such an accessible manner.

    Going to try again tomorrow but limit my time rather than going cold turkey.

    9 votes
    1. ImmobileVoyager
      Link Parent
      With all the respect due to a Stanford psychiatrist, I always feels strange such phrases as I, for one, don't have a brain. I am a more or less sentient being, which involves neuronal activity...

      With all the respect due to a Stanford psychiatrist, I always feels strange such phrases as

      Our brains incentivize us …

      I, for one, don't have a brain. I am a more or less sentient being, which involves neuronal activity mostly clustured in my brain. It's not like there is "me" on one side, then "brain" on the other, two distinct entities, sometimes cooperating and sometimes at odd.

      I ask of [my patients] instead to abstain from their drug of choice for one month.

      This reminds me of what one doctor told me when I first tryied to medically address my being an alcoholic. I though she was wrong and that I could drink responsibly and moderately. It took me another two years, and quite a few mishaps to accept that she, indeed, was right.

      6 votes
  6. [8]
    precise
    Link
    I was just about to post a full commentary about why I don't use Reddit and why X, Y, and Z alternatives are all horrible but I don't think that would be conducive to conversation in a thread of...

    I was just about to post a full commentary about why I don't use Reddit and why X, Y, and Z alternatives are all horrible but I don't think that would be conducive to conversation in a thread of Reddit Refugees(TM). So I'll just state my overarching point that I was trying to illustrate with my extraneous opinion piece.

    I don't think that searching for a replacement for Reddit is a good approach to leaving Reddit. I'm of the personal opinion that people should use the internet, and therein rely on the internet, much less. When I think of people leaving Reddit, a vice, for another vice I see it as an unproductive venture. In short, the brain patterns and positive chemical responses that platforms like Reddit use to keep a user base don't disappear when you leave Reddit. When drug addicts quit, they still experience cravings and temptations for potentially years. A drug addict quitting one upper to only use another doesn't mean they're not still an addict. I think it's safe to say that if we are creating a support thread for people leaving Reddit, that there's some serious addictive elements involved. Leaving Reddit to simply find another internet platform that fills the void, while not acknowledging that Reddit once was that alternative and ignoring the brain chemistry of our choices will only set us up for failure.

    I want to call back to my opinion about excessive internet usage and offer an overall net-decrease of internet usage as a solution. My experience with leaving Reddit and other internet platforms isn't that I don't have quality content to consume through a variety of mediums, but it's that I've got to find a way to use my free time. It's very easy to use that boredom killing machine in my pocket to waste away the minutes where I don't have anything better to do, but the reality is I do have better things to do than embrace a shortcut endorphin addiction.

    Personally, I spend time outdoors. I like to walk, run and hike and as the weather has warmed I've gotten out more. I'll probably be picking up reading again more soon too, but that will take some further disciplining and re-entrenchment of habits on my part. I'm also trying to be more social without the media, striking up conversations with other hikers on the trail and such. I guess to start doing some of this stuff, I'd ask yourself when the last time you spent a day without your phone was. Or maybe what the last outdoors activity you engaged in was. Did you enjoy that time? Try to associate those activities with the positive emotions you experienced, this is how I often fight my depression as well. Sometimes getting out there is the hardest part, once you're out it's so much better for you than any social media.

    8 votes
    1. bloup
      Link Parent
      Personally I think excessive internet usage is only bad because the vast majority of content accessed on the internet is explicitly commercial. Like I was addicted to Wikipedia before reddit. I...

      Personally I think excessive internet usage is only bad because the vast majority of content accessed on the internet is explicitly commercial. Like I was addicted to Wikipedia before reddit. I don't consider a single moment I have spent on Wikipedia to be a "waste" nor have I ever felt like it was a poor use of my time.

      10 votes
    2. [6]
      nothis
      Link Parent
      There's some hard truth in that. Enough to put me on the defense, lol. I still believe that the bigger ideals of the internet (free information, discussing things with like-minded people) are a...

      I don't think that searching for a replacement for Reddit is a good approach to leaving Reddit.

      There's some hard truth in that. Enough to put me on the defense, lol.

      I still believe that the bigger ideals of the internet (free information, discussing things with like-minded people) are a good thing. I also believe that, because of the wealth of information it provides, we need ways to search and curate that information. And I believe that's the part of reddit we're trying to replace. You are on tildes, so I assume you at least partially agree?

      The "dopamine den" reputation of the internet is a fairly new one. The earliest examples I can remember are MMORPG-addicts of the early 00s. But that was mostly videogames, with a dose of internet. Nobody would have thought about a forum or news site as stealing your time. I believe this is mostly about social media and the just constant stream of funny/cute/whatever content scrolling before your eyes. I look at my girlfriend's instagram stream and compared to that, a site like Tildes (which is certainly a "reddit replacement") feels absolutely harmless.

      That being said, it bothers me that reddit is trying to become a kind of instagram. I exclusively browse old.reddit.com and I only have a handful of subreddits subscribed and it's barely comparable to just opening the default frontpage of modern reddit (I just looked without logging in, they have livestreams, now?!?).

      6 votes
      1. bloup
        Link Parent
        It seems pretty simple to me. Tildes is a nonprofit and is pretty explicitly constructed in an attempt to enrich the user's lives. Meanwhile reddit is a for-profit company that mostly cares about...

        It seems pretty simple to me. Tildes is a nonprofit and is pretty explicitly constructed in an attempt to enrich the user's lives. Meanwhile reddit is a for-profit company that mostly cares about getting people to use reddit in the first place because it makes money, and not so much about what happens to them after they get off their computer. Why wouldn't reddit want to create a service that is literally addicting when there are absolutely no consequences for doing so? Who cares if it makes a substantial number of people's lives worse if it keeps the gravy train rolling? It's just good business! (ugh...)

        7 votes
      2. [4]
        precise
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        I do agree to a point. I believe having a wealth of knowledge to consult, curated by fellow internet users is of incredible value to society. I think of Wikipedia and the likes, but there are also...

        I still believe that the bigger ideals of the internet (free information, discussing things with like-minded people) are a good thing. I also believe that, because of the wealth of information it provides, we need ways to search and curate that information. And I believe that's the part of reddit we're trying to replace. You are on tildes, so I assume you at least partially agree?

        I do agree to a point. I believe having a wealth of knowledge to consult, curated by fellow internet users is of incredible value to society. I think of Wikipedia and the likes, but there are also some troves on Reddit. That said, I believe that having a place to have discussions with like minded people is a bit of a trap, hear me out.

        The first problem I have with having homogeneous platforms is they create echo chambers. I've lamented about this on Tildes before, and I don't personally believe any like-minded platform is exempt from the social issue. Some people believe that echo chambers are tolerable in certain instances, pertaining to safe spaces; this is a caveat that I can't address. I've certainly found safe spaces for myself, but for people who face criticism and discrimination for who they are, I can't in good moral judgement tell them that their residence in a safe space is wrong, so I'll digress.

        Secondly, platforms tend to introduce mechanics that increase community engagement, but also (sometimes unknowingly) create reinforcement patterns (think upvotes, likes, shares, retweets, etc.) It's entirely up to the platform, but more so the user to recognize these two ideas and wage a mental battle against them. The reality of the modern internet is there aren't many platforms left that avoid the concept of reinforcement mechanisms; this is why I say replacing one platform with another is a folly. I like to think back to mailing lists in their original form, IRC, early forums that offered no mechanics other than direct communication, even some tiny little corners across various chans that weren't entirely toxic; these places aren't exempt from echo chambers, but at least it forced conversation. The other nasty side to these reinforcement mechanics is that they can be used in replacement of a valid counterpoint, instead of offering a coherent response just send a downvote, don't "like" the content, place them on ignore, report them to moderators. You hear these types of actions preached when discussing responding to trolls, but it goes so much further to stifle legitimate conversation.

        You make a good point, that I am on Tildes, how can I deride the modern state of the internet while participating in it? My first reaction is to offer the excuse that you've got to participate in a system to change the system, but that is not the case in this particular instance. In reality I am on Tildes in more of an academic function. I don't want to taint any future conversations I have on Tildes with any misinterpretations of this idea so I'd like to clarify. I use Tildes as a platform to partially form my personal opinions about a variety of topics, state said opinions on an open-ish forum, and hear legitimate counterpoints. I know that seems like a simple, formulaic approach that you'd think everybody is calculating, but in my personal example, it's not. It is in stark contrast to how much of the internet approaches an open forum. It's a disciplined approach which for the longest time I could not attain. I was too reactionary, flamboyant, inflammatory and crowd-seeking to make any salient point with conclusive logic that had any chance of changing another parties' opinion or stance. I was validated by the echo chambers that I played to who used reinforcement mechanisms to show their agreement. I thank places like Reddit and Twitter for being ingrained with such fruitless, argumentative tactics.

        I don't think Tildes is exempt from any of this, but I also don't think it's gotten to the point of hurting conversation. For what it's worth, Tildes is the only website I frequent aside from various utility websites and the likes. I aspire to get to a point in my life where I don't use the internet at all, something I think differentiates me from most people here.

        4 votes
        1. [3]
          nothis
          Link Parent
          I just realized how politicized "like-minded people" has become. I was thinking of, say, model train enthusiast forums attracting the kinds of people who are into building tiny machinery.

          I just realized how politicized "like-minded people" has become. I was thinking of, say, model train enthusiast forums attracting the kinds of people who are into building tiny machinery.

          4 votes
          1. [2]
            UniquelyGeneric
            Link Parent
            A lot of hobbyist subreddits start off with a treasure trove of information and participation in the community. Eventually as it grows, Eternal September sets in and all the veterans gets annoyed...

            A lot of hobbyist subreddits start off with a treasure trove of information and participation in the community. Eventually as it grows, Eternal September sets in and all the veterans gets annoyed by the noob questions and return snarky, curt responses. It’s ironic in that these new users have the same curiosity and enthusiasm that the jaded veterans no longer share for their own hobby.

            “Like-minded” people don’t always End up liking each other. People come onto Tildes with honest intentions and frequently get flustered by arguments, despite knowing better. Might just be an element of human psychology that the internet exposes by short circuiting the response time.

            6 votes
            1. teaearlgraycold
              Link Parent
              I try my best to defuse what on Reddit would become a long volleyed argument. Maybe it’s odd that I consider any response obligatory. The best way to avoid an argument online is to say nothing back.

              I try my best to defuse what on Reddit would become a long volleyed argument. Maybe it’s odd that I consider any response obligatory. The best way to avoid an argument online is to say nothing back.

              6 votes
  7. nothis
    Link
    I quit all meme/funny/omg-wow subreddits about 8 years ago. I thought I'd miss out on so much cool stuff but I immediately found that I don't need any of it in my life. The reason I didn't quit...

    I quit all meme/funny/omg-wow subreddits about 8 years ago. I thought I'd miss out on so much cool stuff but I immediately found that I don't need any of it in my life.

    The reason I didn't quit 100% is that reddit is still good for covering niche topics. Reddit's scale makes it easy for something super niche to get a community of 10000+ and that's usually enough active eyes to cover anything that happens in the space. You have to be a bit lucky to find subs with good moderators but when you do, it's often the best source for news and discussion on the internet. I still try to minimize my use (but who am I kidding).

    My fear with reddit is the current trend to move towards a social media experience. The day they remove old.reddit.com and force me to use me the redesign I'll probably quit for good and somehow I look forward to that.

    7 votes
  8. [9]
    monarda
    Link
    I'm really glad this came up because I spend way too much time on reddit. I'm not ready to delete my account, but I just logged out. I can't believe how hard it was to do that. I kept telling...

    I'm really glad this came up because I spend way too much time on reddit. I'm not ready to delete my account, but I just logged out. I can't believe how hard it was to do that. I kept telling myself, "Just check this subreddit first," and it was not easy to resist those thoughts.

    I've been dissatisfied with my browsing habits for a while. On days when I am feeling especially down, I will spend hours getting dopamine hits by looking at cute and funny things, but in the end it doesn't make me happy because the rest of my life is just passing me by without my participation. Most days I inadvertently end up doomscrolling, which has sort of turned me into a nihilist, which has led to the idea that there is no point in me doing anything.

    Another consequence (at least I think it's related) of my browsing habits is that I find I can't concentrate on things like I used to. I don't read books anymore because it takes too long, I can't decide to watch a movie because of the time commitment, or I'll start a project, quickly get distracted, start another, do the same thing, and then give up trying to do anything at all. It's like everything is too hard.

    The sun is out today. Maybe I should go outside. Or I could start the book I bought a couple of months ago that's now hidden under a bunch of unopened mail. Or something.

    7 votes
    1. [5]
      monarda
      Link Parent
      Update: It's been four days since I logged out of reddit. The first three days I got a lot done but could feel myself burning out. I mean there will never be an end to things that need to be done...
      • Exemplary

      Update:
      It's been four days since I logged out of reddit.
      The first three days I got a lot done but could feel myself burning out. I mean there will never be an end to things that need to be done over here, and I have this habit of going all in on things until I burn out. I don't want this to happen this time.

      I think one of my problems is that I don't have hobbies, and when I want to get into a hobby, I want to do it like I've been doing it for years and am unsatisfied with beginner level projects and failures. I'll often start a a beginner project and part way through think, "wouldn't it be better if it was like <enter some complicated thing that is beyond my skill level>. I'll then spend days researching how to do said thing only to finally realize that I can't yet do said thing and then put the entire thing away. What I've done is convinced myself that I just can't do things. I find it odd that I'm not like this in my professional life, and I'm wondering why I am like this in my personal life. I'm also wondering why when I think that I just can't do things, I discount all the things I've done professionally, many of those entailing doing things that I have never done before and becoming proficient at them.

      The reason not having hobbies after disconnecting from reddit is a problem, is that I am left with my thoughts as there is nothing to consume them. I'm finding myself noticing all the things wrong with me, and though there is benefit upon that sort of self reflection, the list of things that need fixing makes it hard to find any one thing to focus on for improvement. What reddit and the like did was prevent me from addressing why I feel the anxiety that I've been feeling, and now I am left with all it's messy rawness. I'm afraid to attempt anything because I can't bear the thought of starting a journey that I once again don't finish. But I also can't work myself to mind-oblivion doing jobs around the house and yard that I get no joy from.

      I have done some things.
      I've been walking my dog and husband everyday!
      I've done some spring cleaning.
      I've started embroidering, and I actually like the way it takes up enough of the mind to keep my thoughts from spinning, but not so much that I can't talk or watch something.
      I learned to just vacuum like a normal person - sort of :)
      I've watched a few movies.
      I've been reading a book of short stories.
      I bought a vacuum/mop and it works exactly as I hoped.
      I've been cooking again.
      I've been in the yard enough that I noticed the early blooming flowers!

      Going forward, I'm going to continue to stay logged out of reddit and forgo other places that I can scroll and click away my life. At least for now. Instead I am going to learn how to fill myself actively - at least I hope that is what I can do.

      7 votes
      1. [4]
        Kuromantis
        Link Parent
        Is this a typo or your fetish?

        I've been walking my dog and husband everyday!

        Is this a typo or your fetish?

        2 votes
        1. [3]
          monarda
          Link Parent
          It's neither. I find your comment impolite.

          It's neither.
          I find your comment impolite.

          3 votes
          1. [2]
            Kuromantis
            Link Parent
            Sorry. Admittedly I'm not entirely surprised by that. But seriously, I'm not sure how to parse the husband bit.

            Sorry. Admittedly I'm not entirely surprised by that.

            But seriously, I'm not sure how to parse the husband bit.

            1 vote
            1. monarda
              Link Parent
              A "what do you mean you take your husband for a walk," would have been a great way to convey that! I say, "Let's go for a walk," and the dog excitedly runs around the house, and the husband says,...

              A "what do you mean you take your husband for a walk," would have been a great way to convey that!

              I say, "Let's go for a walk," and the dog excitedly runs around the house, and the husband says, "oh, let me get dressed," and we go for a walk. Neither the dog nor my husband instigate a walk. They never have and they never will. So they do not go walking unless I take them for a walk.

              3 votes
    2. [3]
      monarda
      Link Parent
      Some reflections after 5 hours of no scrolling: I was able to do stuff because I was bored. I had moments where I was overwhelmed by the amount of things that needed to be done because of how long...

      Some reflections after 5 hours of no scrolling:

      I was able to do stuff because I was bored. I had moments where I was overwhelmed by the amount of things that needed to be done because of how long it has been since I've actually done anything. I found that I have set myself up in so many ways to not do anything by creating these "rituals" of how things must be done in order to satisfy me, but the rituals make everything so time consuming that everything seems too large of a task. As an example, I can never just vacuum, because to do it right, I need to move all the furniture, and since the furniture is moved, I should mop while it's out of the way, but I don't use a mop to mop, I do it on hands and knees with a rag that I rinse out every couple of feet and after every few rinses I have to thoroughly wash the rag because I want a clean rag since I want a clean floor. So vacuuming is a huge ordeal.

      Why am I bringing this up? Since I'm not scrolling the internet today, I'm having to confront myself and the things I've been avoiding about myself. Reddit has become my avoidance drug of choice, and without it, I am left with creating my own content. I need to be okay with just vacuuming like a normal person.

      But I didn't vacuum, instead (besides confronting myself) I spent some time in my garden cleaning out the damn weedy as hell cranesbill geraniums that have been slowly taking over my perennial beds, dug up some Himalayan blackberries, spent a couple of hours reading a book, cried, called people I hadn't spoken to in a while, and am thinking about taking a walk with my dog.

      As I was doing some weeding in my garden, I asked myself several times, "What's the point?" Answer: I like it when it's tidy. That's good enough for right now.

      7 votes
      1. [2]
        kfwyre
        Link Parent
        I am so glad you articulated this and put it into words, because I do the same exact thing. There has to be some sort of term for this? "Task inflation"? The cascade you described is exactly how I...

        I found that I have set myself up in so many ways to not do anything by creating these "rituals" of how things must be done in order to satisfy me, but the rituals make everything so time consuming that everything seems too large of a task.

        I am so glad you articulated this and put it into words, because I do the same exact thing. There has to be some sort of term for this? "Task inflation"?

        The cascade you described is exactly how I experience it too. If I do A, then I have to do B, and doing B means I have to do C, and I know I won't be happy if I do C without doing D, and I need to make sure D is up to snuff because it affects, E, but that's dependent on F, and so on. It means I can't ever even get off the ground with A because G, which is completely unrelated, is somehow so looming, intimidating, or burdensome.

        5 votes
        1. monarda
          Link Parent
          Task inflation is a perfect descriptor! When I am under deadline, I am able to construct the process of satisfactory completion within the time frame, but when there is no time constraint, there...

          Task inflation is a perfect descriptor!

          When I am under deadline, I am able to construct the process of satisfactory completion within the time frame, but when there is no time constraint, there is no end to my detailedness.

          4 votes
  9. fryman
    Link
    I actually gave up reddit recently for lent after over a decade’s long addiction, it’s been a long time coming. I’ve known for some time that the main demographic, at least on r/all, is for kids,...

    I actually gave up reddit recently for lent after over a decade’s long addiction, it’s been a long time coming. I’ve known for some time that the main demographic, at least on r/all, is for kids, and I think a younger or more immature me wouldn’t be able to walk away from it. But there is only so much time in this world, and at the end of the day I don’t feel better or worse after a day wasted online. It’s just wasted, there is nothing to show for it. I discovered tildes and HN since, and this is just the right amount of content...unless it blows up and overtakes my life all over again. YouTube and podcasts work well in that I can still get things done, work out, and be productive. Otherwise, the internet should be a tool, not a place to live. After lent, I’ll likely go back to reddit, but unsubbing from most of my feed and keeping the slower, more niche ones.

    7 votes
  10. [2]
    skullkid2424
    (edited )
    Link
    I'm not interested in quitting reddit as a whole, as I still find meaningful interactions in small niche subreddits - and often good information about video games in subreddits that filter out...

    I'm not interested in quitting reddit as a whole, as I still find meaningful interactions in small niche subreddits - and often good information about video games in subreddits that filter out memes/art for actual gameplay discussion.

    But I've been trying for a while to stop visiting /r/all due to how distracting it is, how much of a time waster it is, and how I go there by default when I'm bored - even when I have recently just closed the tabs. I've used RES to remove the link to all, but after a few days of discipline, my willpower broke and pretty soon I had trained my browser that simply typing 'a' in my address bar takes me back to /r/all. The thread reminded me that I want to spend less time on reddit, so I did a bit more research on ways to block /r/all. I ended up grabbing a simple redirection addon for firefox and redirecting /r/all to the tildes homepage. Hopefully that will satisfy my urge to do something with some higher quality content, but also with content that doesn't get refreshed often enough to waste hours on.

    While it isn't too difficult to undo the redirect, I'm hoping the forced reminder keeps me from /r/all for a long enough period of time that I can break the habit. And it might be a good way to break the habit for anyone looking to stop looking at reddit altogether.

    5 votes
    1. elcuello
      Link Parent
      I just removed r/all from my RES and would like to use a redirect now too. Thanks for the inspiration. I'm also not interested in leaving all together but just trimming my subs and my time spent...

      I just removed r/all from my RES and would like to use a redirect now too. Thanks for the inspiration. I'm also not interested in leaving all together but just trimming my subs and my time spent on r/all. I'm just going to redirect to this specific thread to make a point to myself.

      5 votes
  11. petrichor
    Link
    I've never had much of a problem with social media addiction (perks of being young and used to it, I suppose), but sometimes do feel the urge to pop over to /r/all and see what's going on. I...

    I've never had much of a problem with social media addiction (perks of being young and used to it, I suppose), but sometimes do feel the urge to pop over to /r/all and see what's going on. I always regret it. It makes me sad.

    If anyone else has this problem, I've found that keeping a multireddit of a few, nice subreddits bookmarked lets me pull up Reddit while staying without an account to minimize engagement and avoiding the hell that are the default subreddits.

    My bookmark link looks like this, plus a few more specific communities:

    old.reddit.com/r/architecture+books+origami+pokemon+programming+raspberry_pi

    5 votes
  12. scissortail
    Link
    For anyone looking to severely limit time but not quit: the LeechBlock extension in Chrome or Firefox is a lifesaver. You can customize blocking times extensively and make it incredibly onerous to...

    For anyone looking to severely limit time but not quit: the LeechBlock extension in Chrome or Firefox is a lifesaver. You can customize blocking times extensively and make it incredibly onerous to change those times. Right now for Firefox (which I use the most), my partner has the password that allows me to change the options. For Chromium (which I use much less), I have to input a randomly generated 128-character string if I want to change the options. I'm about a month into this particular setup and it has had more staying power than anything I'd ever tried before. I'm reading books more than I'd imagined and have plenty of time for my new hobby (knitting).

    What surprised me the most was realizing that I use information-gathering, useful or not, as a coping mechanism. When I get stressed my safety blanket is scrolling reddit and tildes and reading all the comments (but, interestingly, not many of the linked articles). I'm very glad to be changing my habits away from that.

    5 votes
  13. chrysanth
    Link
    I also wasn't in the last thread, but a month ago I decided I was no longer going to use Reddit. I was spending my time there to distract me from anxiety about life, relationships, work, etc. when...

    I also wasn't in the last thread, but a month ago I decided I was no longer going to use Reddit. I was spending my time there to distract me from anxiety about life, relationships, work, etc. when those things became difficult to process, and thus denying myself time to reflect on and resolve those issues. Since then, I've been back to the front page a few times, which is the part of Reddit I want to avoid. I still check out smaller and higher-quality communities, like r/AskHistorians. However, I've noticed a corresponding increase in the time I now spend on Tildes and Twitch. I didn't want to remove Reddit just to replace it with a different kind of social media, even if that social media is free from some of the disadvantages of Reddit, like Tildes is. Finding alternative ways of spending my time has thus been difficult and boring, which I think is actually the point. I've been on social media platforms for so long that I've forgotten what other things I could do with my time. What we do in our free time, I think, reflects our dreams and aspirations, what we want to be and do, and so to stop using Reddit and find myself confused on what to do with that time, indicates to me I need to spend more time thinking about who I am and what I want to do while I'm alive (perhaps a bit dramatic but it's a real concern and priority of mine to change this).

    4 votes
  14. zonk
    Link
    I've been (unsuccessfully) trying to quit reddit forever now but I can't fully stop. You can't deny that it can be a great space for niche communities that you can't find anywhere else. The...

    I've been (unsuccessfully) trying to quit reddit forever now but I can't fully stop. You can't deny that it can be a great space for niche communities that you can't find anywhere else. The problem for me was the huge amount of useless information. So what I did and what seemed to work for me so far: unsubscribe from a ton, especially bigger, subreddits and remove the /r/all link everywhere (RES top bar, etc). I think for months I unconsciously went up to the button 'ALL' and wanted to click it, even though it wasn't there anymore. It was sooooo often, it was creepy af. Sometimes I opened reddit, scrolled there, "oh, it's gone!", closed the tab, reopened reddit, and tried to go there again....

    But now I don't miss r/all at all (heh), but only go on reddit on my own frontpage and see mainly small, slow moving subs with content that actually interests me. Since it's been so long, it's probably a good idea to purge my subscribed subreddits again, and downsize even further. This way I get rid of clutter, focus more and more on my core interests, and my front page gets slower and slower, meaning that I have less and less reason to visit reddit a lot.

    4 votes
  15. [4]
    acdw
    Link
    I've been doing fairly poorly actually -- I blocked Reddit in uBlock, but remembered I could just use Private Browsing to Reddit ... so I've been doing that. sigh I'm trying though!

    I've been doing fairly poorly actually -- I blocked Reddit in uBlock, but remembered I could just use Private Browsing to Reddit ... so I've been doing that. sigh

    I'm trying though!

    4 votes
    1. [2]
      Don_Camillo
      Link Parent
      activate ublock in private windows ;-)

      activate ublock in private windows ;-)

      5 votes
      1. acdw
        Link Parent
        ya.. will do thanks :)

        ya.. will do thanks :)

        2 votes
    2. feigneddork
      Link Parent
      What really helped me limit my usage for websites (initially Facebook and Instagram, then Reddit) was setting up my PiHole to block those domains. Not only was it effective at getting rid of ads...

      What really helped me limit my usage for websites (initially Facebook and Instagram, then Reddit) was setting up my PiHole to block those domains. Not only was it effective at getting rid of ads across devices, but it was also effective at making me go "ah yes, I've blocked this because I'm trying to avoid using it. Right, on I go avoiding it then".

      But recently I've tried AdGuard Home and not only is it incredibly user friendly and braindead simple to switch off services (there is literally a page where you can just turn off popular websites like Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Steam, Reddit, etc), but for me PiHole was pretty fiddly to set up while AdGuard Home is super simple and very reliable.

      3 votes
  16. rmgr
    Link
    I've actually been minimising my Reddit usage lately. I spend a lot of time on the various RPG subs as well as a heap of junk so I signed up for the forum RPG Pub. My theory is that the quality of...

    I've actually been minimising my Reddit usage lately. I spend a lot of time on the various RPG subs as well as a heap of junk so I signed up for the forum RPG Pub.

    My theory is that the quality of interaction is a little better in a forum environment because poster identities are more visible through profile pictures and signatures and stuff. I have no idea whether or not that's the case but it sort of scratches the itch. I'm trying to limit how much I lurk there in a day though as like a lot of the commenters on this thread I don't want to straight replace Reddit with something else.

    3 votes
  17. GoingMerry
    Link
    I “quit” Reddit as my New Years resolution this year. I say “quit” because my only rule is not to use the app on my phone. I still use Reddit on my computer and not logged in on my phone, but I’d...

    I “quit” Reddit as my New Years resolution this year. I say “quit” because my only rule is not to use the app on my phone. I still use Reddit on my computer and not logged in on my phone, but I’d say I’ve reduced my usage by at least 90%.

    My main issue was that it was so easy to use, any time I had a few seconds of downtime, I was popping my phone open and scrolling. That downtime is really important- allowing myself to be bored, think, etc was missing.

    I do still like having something to occupy my time, so I wrote a little website to help me read more ebooks cross-platform and “au moment” with others. I’m currently reading Ivanhoe if anyone is interested: http://books.liberator.me/?book=Ivanhoe_A_Romance

    3 votes
  18. viborgu
    (edited )
    Link
    Noob here, I also missed the original thread. I just made this Twitter thread about why my subreddit has gone private indefinitely as a protest against the pervasive toxic trolling on Reddit now....

    Noob here, I also missed the original thread.

    I just made this Twitter thread about why my subreddit has gone private indefinitely as a protest against the pervasive toxic trolling on Reddit now. Did I lay it on a little thick? I'm SO sick of their BS.

    I've been on Reddit 14 years, ha! 14 wasted years...I won't lie, at first I think it was a positive influence on me. Maybe I needed a little more rationalism in my life. As it turns out rationalism on social media is something best taken in small doses.

    *Edit: As for other suggestions, I don't think there really is much out there, other than small topic-specific BBS-type sites etc. There is MetaFilter which can be decent but their comment sorting system is crap tbh, entire threads are so easily derailed by one troll.

    2 votes