The Internet is a must-have in modern times. Everyone uses it, whether to work, play, keep up with old friends, meet new ones or stay informed. But sometimes a person can spend too much time on the Internet and start to develop a dependency on it. When the Internet starts to interfere with a person's life, and he misses out on experiences or important events to spend time browsing the Web, it may be time to admit an addiction and take steps to overcome it. If this happens to someone you know, there are ways you can help him.
Talk to your friend and find out how she feels about her Internet usage. Ask her whether she thinks she has a problem or whether the Internet is affecting her life in a negative way. Ask her to admit that she has a problem with the Internet, but reaffirm that it can be helped.
Discuss ways your friend can allow himself to use the Internet without being dependent on it. Suggest that he keep a log of his Internet use so he is aware of how much time he actually spends online. Mention that he could use a timer that can help him limit his use to a certain amount of time. Suggest that he use the Internet as a reward at the end of the day for fulfilling certain real-life obligations.
Set up replacement activities to help take the place of using the Internet and provide a distraction for your friend. For example, instead of online social networking, set up a lunch date, hike or movie for her with a few friends. Help your friend get into the habit of enjoying real-life activities and interactions.
Talk to your friend about taking an Internet vacation. Select a certain amount of time during which your friend simply takes a vacation from the Internet and frees himself from the online scene. Try traveling somewhere different and doing new things during this period to help distract him and keep his mind free of obsessing over the Internet.
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