5 Tips to Give Up Social Media for Lent

Are you tired of how social media is taking over your life? Do you want a richer, deeper relationship with Jesus? Then you might want to try giving up social media for Lent.

What better time to detox from social media than when we're also preparing our hearts for Easter? What better time to remind ourselves of the true things of life than the time that we remember where our life comes from?

When I tell people that I fasted from social media for Lent, they gawk just a bit. After all, Lent is over 40 days long. Most people can't last 40 hours without social media, let alone 40 days. They think that I might be completely severed from society by the time I get back.

Giving up social media for Lent is not only doable, it is a great experience! In fact, I liked it so much, I've done it twice. In those two years, I've learned a few things that can help you too give up social media for Lent.

1. Find an Accountability Partner

An accountability partner makes giving up social media not only easier but more fun. You can exchange struggles, joys, and accomplishments. You can keep each other strong even when Instagram beckons like a purple square of immediate satisfaction.

2. Give Up Responsibly

Don’t make your fast an excuse to not check important notifications or people. Some groups communicate exclusively though social media. Other people find social media a key instrument for keeping up with family and friends, especially international friends who can't text. Don't sever relationships or commitments, but also don't make excuses because you want to goof off on Instagram during your "fast." Know what is wise for you and stick with it.

3. Replace Your Habit

This is the BIGGEST tip I can give you. The first year I fasted from social media, I didn't replace the extra time I created with anything else. Therefore, at the end of the fast, I didn't accomplish much aside from abstaining from social media.

The second year that I fasted from social media, I replaced looking at social media with memorizing scripture. I got this app called Scripture Typer. Whenever I wanted to click that Pinterest icon, I would go to the Scripture Typer icon. At the end of Lent, I not only got a break from the instantaneous culture of social media, I created a new rhythm that continues to benefit my spiritual walk.

You don't have to memorize scripture. What about reading the Bible, praying, reading other books, texting people encouragement or simply being aware of your surroundings and welcoming the stillness? Find something that excites you to give up social media.

4. Glorify Jesus, Not Yourself

If you fast from social media, you shouldn't shout it out on all of your social media platforms beforehand. Then you will be like the Pharisees in Matthew 6:16-18 who fasted from food and made sure that they looked sad about it in front of others. You shouldn't complain or brag in front of your friends about your fast. It's okay to talk about it, for maybe you'll inspire them as well, but try not let it become a point of pride. This is about Jesus, not you. (Much easier said than done, for we love to pretend things are about us.)

5. Persevere

This is a fancy, Biblical way of saying, "just do it." Don't give up, even when it's hard, because it will be hard. I found it hardest when I felt tired. My mind didn't want to think, so I automatically went to social media to sit around and, well, not think. (That scares me just a bit.)

Go back to those habits that you are trying to pursue over social media. Talk to your accountability partner. Pray. Be wise if you need to adjust your fast, but don't give up simply because it is hard. Know that the Spirit who was with Jesus during his 40 day fast is also in you.

Giving up social media for Lent is a practice that I treasure and encourage all to try sometime. I won't be doing it this year because I am taking a class in social media and must use my personal and blog accounts to get a grade, but I will not use it just for fun.

If you want to check out some other great thoughts and resources about Lent, go to AnnVoscamp’s post and devotional concerning Lent!

I would love to know if you are giving up social media for Lent or thinking about doing it. Leave me a comment! If you're a bit late, no worries. Just start now, and have a great Lent! 

Princess Hannah