Social Media is a breeding ground for hate and insecurities. Things easily get out of hand and can quickly turn sour if you don’t keep an eye out. Apps like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are anxiety and depression’s playgrounds and they are more than willing to push you off the swings.
To keep your mental health safe on these apps there are a few things you can and should do. One great thing you can do is interact with things on social media that make you happy. Your social apps run off of an algorithm that becomes very specific to you. What you click on, like, and repost becomes your internet profile and the apps will cater that content to you. You can check out your own profile pretty easily. Instagram is my favorite place to give myself a little content checkup. If you go to your explore page, you will see all kinds of posts from people you might know and not know. Your explore page will show you content it thinks you would enjoy. So, if you follow Instagram models and people who promote products, your explore page will show you similar posts.
I’ll use my own explore page as an example. On Instagram I love to check out interior design pages, food pages, and jewelry pages. So, my explore page consists of just that.
This is just one example of how you can keep your metal health safe online. By making sure you see things you like, you can be on social media without feeling bad about yourself. It’s all up to you though. You have to make sure you don’t click on the page of the girl who is trying to scam you with flat tummy tea. You have to be sure not to follow pages that will damage your own self-image. Make your scrolling choices with what kind of content offers you a positive social media experience in mind.
Another feature of social media that I adore is the unfollow/unfriend button! That button is an absolute life saver and I have no shame in using it. You are not required to continue to follow people and pages that don’t spark joy for you. If you’re tired of seeing a page’s posts or if they irritate you just hit that unfollow button. It takes two seconds and I promise you’ll forget you ever followed them in the first place. Once those posts disappear from your timeline so will your bad feelings about them. Out of Sight, out of mind baby!! Don’t worry about offending people with your unfollow. Half the time they won’t even notice and if they do, they could probably be well served with a break from the socials.
That leads me to my last tip, take a break. There are plenty of ways to take a break from social media. You can disable your accounts for a while or just delete the apps off of your phone. I know we all have this desperate need to be scrolling, but we all need some space from the screen once in a while. Turn it off, put it down, and take a breath. It’s oddly freeing to disconnect.
Consider the content you’re engaging with, be mindful of what sparks your joy, and be sure to live offscreen.