The first thing we do in the morning, and the last thing we do at night – though we may not wish to admit it, mindlessly scrolling through social media eats up a lot of our time and energy. Whilst it can be a great tool for expressing yourself and connecting with friends, it’s not news that this attachment to our phones and constant comparison with others isn’t healthy.
Though we may seem more connected than ever, reports suggest we’re also lonelier than we’ve ever been, with social media linked to a loss of focus, reductions in self-esteem, and a greater risk of depression.
You needn’t delete your apps quite yet – wellness coach and meditation teacher Ashley Hunt has some simple but effective tips to help you use social media mindfully, making the most of it whilst avoiding the pitfalls.
Post With Intention
Have a think about why you’re posting on social media, what are you trying to get out of it? Are you trying to educate or inspire your audience? Are you simply sharing something that warmed your heart or made you laugh? Reflect on your intentions to ensure they’re positive.
Clean Up Your Newsfeed
Every now and then, revisit the pages or accounts you follow to ensure they are adding value to you. How do you feel when you look at their posts? What do you get out of following them? If you find that someone’s posts are making you insecure, jealous, upset or simply uninspired, it may be time to un-follow.
Monitor Your Energy
Your social media accounts are a way for you to release your energy into the world wide web. Have a think about the vibes your posts are sending. How do you think your posts make other people feel? Recently, Facebook discovered that seeing negative posts cause people to feel more negative – it’s not exactly surprising, but let's make the world a happier place by regularly posting positive messages.
Engage With Friends
If you’re constantly posting but not interacting, you’re missing out. Social media is a hugely powerful way of engaging with your friends. You can also cultivate a community and start conversations with like-minded people. Don’t just mindlessly scroll. instead, positively comment, offer encouragement, and discuss ideas with other users.
Reign In Your Addiction
Think about how much time you’re spending on social media, and determine how much of that time is productive. You might find that you’re scrolling as a form of procrastination, rather than taking things in and developing interests. Consciously try to avoid checking social media, and eventually you will find you don’t mindlessly reach for your phone every half hour.