Selected Podcast

Social Media: The Double-Edged Sword

Social Media: The Double-Edged Sword
If you do something and don’t share it on social media, did it really happen?

Social media is a double-edged sword. You can keep up with friends and family in situations where you might not have telephoned for updates in the "olden days." Digital life also generates FOMO: fear of missing out. Your life may not seem as fabulous as the lives of others as presented online.

In our real world interactions, we may be an absent presence. Sure, we’re in the same location with someone to share an experience. Chances are good that at least one person in your small group is spending that shared experience in the digital world, not really engaging in what is happening in real-time.

Yes, those likes on your photo can give you a little dopamine boost. The problem is that personal value is now being judged by likes, shares and comments. Social media does not determine your worth.

Digital life may be impacting simple skills that earlier generations learned through social interaction. Social media doesn’t teach how to create real relationships, resolve conflicts, or negotiate a successful relationship. The value of these things make relationships sustainable. We need to work on making human connections.

We are tethered to our devices, increasing our stress levels. We take them to bed and treat them like a human participant in our lives. It’s difficult to be mindful.

Ways to Stop the Digital Takeover

  • Stop sleeping with your telephone on. Overnight notifications deprive you of sleep. Don’t check your social media as soon as you wake. You need some downtime. Turn off push notifications. Buy a separate alarm clock.
  • Work on being present. Don’t keep your phone on the table when sharing a meal. Put your phone away when you attend a social gathering.
  • Put the phones away for family time. Parents can’t have phones out when the kids don’t have phones. Keep your kids off devices overnight and hand the devices over after morning routines are complete.
  • Be sure you don’t let your couple become a thruple. Your device isn’t a member in your partnership. 
Listen as Dr. Don Grant joins Dr. Pam Peeke to discuss how to manage social media and still enjoy life.


Smarty Pants Vitamins
Featured Speaker:
Don Grant, MA, MFA, CCDC, PhD
Dr. Don GrantDr. Don Grant is an internationally award-winning media psychologist, researcher, addiction specialist, and Chair of the new American Psychological Association (Division 46) "Device Management" Committee. He is also a certified chemical dependency counselor, nationally certified group facilitator, and clinician/educator trainer.

Don received his B.A. with honors from the University of Michigan, an MFA from the University of Southern California, and both his MA and Ph.D. (summa cum laude) in Psychology (with an emphasis in media psychology) from Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara.  

In addition to his work with substance abuse and dual diagnosis co-morbidity, Don is the Founder/CEO of  "(un)BOOT CAMP," a treatment program for teens, young adults, and families struggling with technology, Smartphone, online gaming, cyberpornography, and/or other technologically-mediated platform/device dependence, addiction, and negotiation.

Don was recipient of the 2015 American Psychological Association "Early Career Achievement Award." In 2012 he was awarded an international "Best of Show" prize in London for his addiction recovery research work. His recent keynote speaker and conference presentations included: The Young Adult Transitions Association Conference (U-C Boulder), The Admissions & Marketing Symposium (Los Angeles), The Pop Culture Association Conference (New Orleans), the California Association for Alcohol/Drug Educators (CAADE) Conference (L.A.), One Recovery Launch and Town Hall Symposium, The California Unified Collegiate Recovery Conference (UCSB).  He also designs, presents, and facilitates CEU training workshops for clinicians and educators nationwide on behalf of Cross Country Education.

In 2015 Don was invited to present his research at the 2015 APA Convention in Toronto. While there, his global study on technologically mediated vs Face-to-Face sobriety recovery support was hand-selected by the convention committee for individual external promotion through a dedicated APA-sponsored press release, distributed to the media, and immediately went internationally "viral."  His current research explores how the use of technology and online media platforms/devices affect/effect our biological, psychological, and sociological health and relationships.

Don counsels individuals, couples, and families and facilitates groups through both his private practice and two Los Angeles based dual diagnosis treatment programs. He provides professional consulting, branding, program curriculum design/auditing, and content copywriting services to the mental health and addiction recovery community, and offers free education and recovery support to local schools.

From 2001 through 2014 Don worked in residential dual-diagnosis treatment, serving for the last three years as Executive Director of a program for women which he also created. His writing, editing, and production experience extends across all media platforms, including film, television, and traditional literary. In 2002, he created and implemented the Literacy in Treatment program, which today still offers adult clients in recovery the opportunity to earn their high school diploma.

Don's media credits as an expert recovery professional include: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Good Morning San Diego, Fox News Networks, The Michael Jackson Radio Show, The Associated Press, Extra!, National College Radio, Internet Talk Radio, APA Division 46 Media Psychology Podcast Series, Addicted To Addicts; Webtalk Radio, The Australian Radio Network, the TV Guide Network, KTLA, John Wells Productions, and many other local, national, and international news, radio programs and podcasts.

Print, interview, and author credits include: Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Hollywood Reporter, Forbes, Us, and People magazine. Academic publications include: Using Social Media for Sobriety Recovery: Beliefs, Behaviors, and Surprises from Users of Face-to-Face and Social Media Sobriety Support (Psychology of Popular Media Culture) The Sage Encyclopedia of Media Violence (Sage), Has Social Media Begun To "Sponsor" Addiction Recovery?: A Study of Face-To-Face Versus Online Sobriety Support (ProQuest), and The Digital Drug (APA Division 46 Amplifier Magazine). His white paper collaboration with global experts addressing the DSM-5 inquiry into the validity of online gaming as an authentic diagnosis is currently under editor review for journal publication.