BeTimeful was created to help people worldwide regain control over their attention after it was robbed by social media addiction. The world's only News-Feed blocker has ambitious plans, one of which is to solve social media addiction and the negative mental health consequences that accompany it.

How do we plan on accomplishing this? The first step is to reduce addiction and the mental health harm caused by this habit. The second step is to reintroduce positive social media habits, such as connecting with friends and creating content.

How can the world's only Mobile News Feed Blocker help reduce the impulse to turn to your phone to access social media?

As soon as social media opens on someone's phone, their brain is flooded with dopamine. Two things happen right away. The first is an immediate alleviation of stress, tension, and a change of focus from what was previously being focused on. The second is a reinforcement of the behavior.

This should be alarming for everyone because access to easy dopamine makes you lazy. If you can get immediate pleasure simply from opening up your phone, what is stopping you from doing so every single minute? If you have endless access to dopamine from a simple flick of the wrist and a nod of the head, then why go through the laborious task of reading a full book? I'm not pointing fingers by any means. I'm just as guilty. I'm simply pointing out the fact that our brains are so antiquated that in their mission to ensure our survival, they have turned us into pleasure-seeking zombies. The limbic system and its direct connection to the brainstem that governs our instinctual behavior have not changed over the past 2,000 years, and what helped it survive in the hunter-and-gatherer era continues to dominate its decision-making. In other words, your brain will do anything possible to not use up resources when plenty of pleasure is available at hand.

Another reason this should be worrisome is that we use social media to distract ourselves from the challenges that we face in life. Many psychologists who study the interplay between social media and mental health point to this "escapism" as the culprit of negative mental health consequences of social media addiction such as depression, anxiety, self-esteem issues, and others. Escapism is part of society and will always be. This has been true in the time of Television and will continue to be true for the foreseeable future in society. However, the rapid transition of innovation to the mobile phone and then the introduction of these powerful devices into young hands - is something society has never experienced.

Access to a mobile phone at such a young age enables youth to pursue escapism at a much higher rate. At any moment of boredom or displeasure with homework and some sort of tension - all of that can be easily eliminated simply by turning on your phone. After sufficient escapism (and we can all relate to this), is it any wonder that depression, anxiety, or self-esteem issues are the consequences? I'm not saying these aren't diagnosable medical conditions; they could easily be, depending on the duration.

But the way I see it, if you avoid your problems for long enough, they grow, multiply, and turn into something truly ugly, and any sane person will have issues dealing with them - let alone a teen who was given a phone at the young age of 8.

I digress. Again, how does a mobile News Feed blocker help with this? To be frank, the answer is VERY direct - with a surgical knife, in fact. A Mobile News Feed Blocker stops the news feed from popping up when a social media platform is opened on your mobile device. This stops the dopamine hit that is accompanied every time the News Feed blocker pops up. When the dopamine hit from the News feed is not there, escapism is no longer possible. A few positive consequences occur at this moment. The user immediately asks, "am I trying to avoid something?" 99% of the time, the answer is yes. In this case, the user is motivated to go tackle what they are avoiding. If the user is seeking entertainment, BeTimeful allows users to take a few minutes of scrolling. If the user is seeking connection (also very frequent and important), the user's DMs are open for use and filled with their friends who are also seeking connection. The user can even post content and share their creativity or run their business without getting distracted by the News Feed. This brings us to the next phase of how a mobile News Feed blocker can help solve social media addiction: improving mental health, fostering relationships, sharing, and creativity.

How does a mobile News Feed Blocker improve mental health and foster relationships, sharing, and creativity?

Let's examine the problem that we're trying to solve. Although complex, I'll try to be concise. Beyond escapism, the other negative consequence of unbounded social media scrolling is deep insecurity. Psychologists who study social media point to "upward comparison" as the culprit that is causing many social media users to feel inadequate. As one seeks connection and entertainment on social media, they are inundated with people's "highlight reels," which immediately trigger inferiority. As social creatures, we unconsciously compare ourselves to the people around us. As social media is a synonym for many people's social circle, they unconsciously compare themselves to what they see on their feeds. Again, the self-esteem epidemic can easily be explained: if one spends 8 hours out of their 16-hour waking life scrolling on social media and unconsciously comparing themselves to people's highlight reels, is it any wonder that people feel insecure?

Now that we have examined the problem, how can a Mobile News Feed blocker help with "upward comparison"? The answer is simple. Once the Mobile News Feed blocker is active, the News Feed doesn't pop up on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn. This stops the user from "comparing themselves" to the content of their News Feed. Is it this simple? Yes, it is. From here, a cascade of positive mental health effects occurs.

1. The moment you stop comparing yourself to the content on your feed, your sense of self-esteem begins to improve almost immediately.

2. Once self-esteem begins to improve, anxiety and depression eventually start to subside as well.

3. Going on social media with the News Feed allows you to post content and connect with your social circle through the DMs. If you tune into your desires to connect and perhaps share content, you can turn these addicting social media platforms into sources of genuine connection and creative outlets. If you DM your friends on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, or Facebook and focus your attention on fostering these relationships instead of simply scrolling, your sense of connection, belonging, and social circle will grow naturally. If you have the desire to create content, then you can do so. Without comparing yourself to the "highlight reels" your confidence will grow and you will be more motivated and inspired to share your own content. 

Social media is a tool of connection and self-expression that has been captured by the News-Feed and deep corporate greed to keep you hooked and scrolling long enough to extract advertising dollars. Another option is to block Instagram on your phone. However, we're fighting back with BeTimeful - the world's only Mobile News Feed Blocker. Come join us, reclaim your attention, confidence, and let's use social media to stay connected, productive and not distracted.