Social media can be addicting, but I’m sure you already knew that. I can spend hours mindlessly scrolling through Instagram, and especially TikTok. But how big of a deal is it?
A 2018 British study found that social media use can cause disrupted sleep, which in turn can cause depression, memory loss, and poor academic performance.
Not only is social media addicting, but it also makes users compare their lives to celebrities and influencers. This can cause low self-esteem, low confidence, and a constant need for approval.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. You can use social media in a healthier way.
The 2 step Social Media Cleanse
1. Mass unfollow people who don’t inspire you every 3 months.
Spend some time going through your following list and unfollow people. A lot of people.
Celebrities, influencers, high school acquaintances you no longer talk to all need to go.
Following celebrities and influencers does not typically add any positivity to your life. You are constantly being reminded that you don’t live a lavish lifestyle with dozens of friends and a perfect partner. The reality is, not even their lives are perfect, and they highlight the best moments of their lives.
Instead, follow people and pages that inspire you and pique your creativity. What are your interests? Photography? Videography? Poetry? Travel? Follow pages that interest your hobbies and get you thinking.
Doing this will make your experience on Instagram a more positive and uplifting one, and you won’t feel as anxious when using Instagram. Think of it as the toxicity filter.
2. Take a break!
This part can be a little tough. It definitely was for me at first too. I used to treat Instagram like my morning newspaper. I constantly needed to see what people were wearing, doing, and travelling to. I had a major sense of FOMO.
But as a content creator, I also felt burnt out and overworked. It got exhausting, and content creation no longer became fun for me.
While taking breaks can be risky for content creators, it was definitely worth it. I took a one-month break from social media and it felt amazing. I didn’t wake up and instantly check my phone. Instead, I was productive. I finished my daily tasks before I even touched my phone.
Taking a break will stop you from being overstimulated by different types of media. Being told where to go, what to buy, and what everyone else is doing is exhausting. You’ll find yourself in the present and enjoying moments in life without the distraction of needing to post on social media for everyone to see.
Your mind will feel completely refreshed.
If you find your phone in your hands throughout most of the day, it could be time for a social media cleanse. It’s not as scary as it seems, I promise. Give it a try and see how much your mood improves.