It’s easy to fall into the social media black hole where you find yourself scrolling for hours catching up on what all your friends and celebrities are up to. Even though social media is a fantastic tool for communicating with people, learning new skills and for getting inspiration, it’s essential to take control of how we use social media, and how often. To help prevent you from falling into the social media black hole, here are a few of my top tips for healthier social media habits.
1. Follow Inspiring Accounts
You have the control to follow and unfollow whatever accounts you like. Of course, friends and family go without saying, following those your closest with is a great way to show support for one another!
Outside of your social circle, think about what kind of things you enjoy, like animals. I love cats, and they make me happy, so I follow a couple of cat accounts because I like to see cute fur babies in my social media feed. So, if someone inspires you or posts content which makes you feel good, then definitely give that account a follow.
My recommended accounts to follow on Instagram/Facebook: HOW People, This Girl Can, Go Pro, Cats All Day, Wild Live Planet, Shextreme.
2. Post Positively
Social media helps connect us with the whole world, so why not use it to spread positivity. Celebrate your achievements, days out with friends, your loved ones and show off some creativity with your posts.
Always ask yourself, “would I like this post?”. If you’re unsure about posting something, ask someone to take a look for you or better yet, sleep on it and see how you feel the next day. Social media isn’t going anywhere, so there’s no rush! Consider your posts and the people who may see them; you never know who you could inspire online, so it’s great to set a good example.
3. Be Intentional and Get Creative
It can sometimes feel like you have to post on social media, perhaps because you haven’t in a while and you’re worried people will begin to unfollow you, but that’s not the case. Try not to post for the sake of posting something, after all; it’s all about the quality of your posts and not how many you post.
Whenever you leave a comment, like a post or follow an account, be intentional and meaningful with your actions. Giving someone a “👍” is not as meaningful as commenting, “Well done, that’s amazing!”
4. Turn off and Tune out
Phones, computers and tablets are never too far from our reach, but to have them beep and vibrate at you for attention can get really distracting. It’s time to retake control and be in charge of your social media notifications. I’ve turned my notifications off so that I’m not distracted when I’m working or out with my friends. Doing this allows me to check my notifications when I want to, and not when my phone beeps at me to!
5. No phone before bed
It’s very tempting to get into bed and think, “ooo, I’ll just check Facebook”, but we all know that it’s never a quick check. It’s important to try and wind down naturally to sleep, which is why using your phone before bed can give you a bad night’s rest as your head is full of social media stimulus!
6. Block out the Negativity
Unfortunately, social media can be a negative place where people mindlessly spread bad vibes. The good thing is that we have the tools to help combat this; Delete, Unfollow and Block.
Your social media account is YOURS. You decide who to follow, who to talk to and who not to talk to. If there are any accounts that you don’t like, who post negative comments or make you feel bad in any way, you have the tools to stop seeing their content. Remember, your profile is yours to manage, to inspire others with and to share your adventures on so don’t let anyone else's negativity or nastiness interrupt your great work.
7. Take a Break
It may sound impossible, but it isn’t! Taking a good break from social media once in a while is brilliant for clearing your head and reconnecting with the real world.
Go on, give it a try and see how you feel afterwards. Start with 12hrs, then try 24hrs and every so often, take a good break from your phone and spend your time doing something you love.