Social media has changed the way we live and connect with others. The mass adoption of social media has many benefits. Friends and families can get in touch much more accessible. People, stories, and important messages can be made known at lightning speed. Individuals can create and build like never before. Businesses can quickly connect with their target audience more effectively and at a lower cost.
However, we are aware that social media can have negative consequences if used and operated in a way that isn’t ethical or humane. It is easy for consumers to become distracted, less focused, or less productive. We can easily be overwhelmed by content from social media and other sources without having to set boundaries. Overly persuasive content, aggressive commenting, and user behavior in messaging can affect our moods and behavior.
Social media is an integral part of our daily lives. But you don’t have to consume it. Instead, it can help you live a more balanced life and improve your mental health by being mindful of how much time you spend on social media and the reasons behind it. These are ten ways that you as a consumer can be more responsible and intentional with social media.
Do not receive notifications.
This is a great place to start: turn off notifications on all social media accounts. Many of us suffer from FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), and reports keep us informed. You’re not missing anything, but you are being distracted from your family, friends, and work. Scheduling times throughout the day to check your notifications is a good idea. This will ensure that you aren’t constantly connected to your phone.
Keep an eye on your time.
It’s easy to get lost on social media and scroll through endless feeds, bouncing from TikTok or Instagram. You may feel like you have done nothing of any real value at the end of the day. Recent research has identified a sweet spot in terms of how much time you spend on social networking sites. According to the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, limiting social media usage to just 30 minutes per day can improve health, decrease loneliness, and reduce depression. Limit how much time you spend on social media. You can monitor your screen time with an iPhone and access real-time reports.
Follow with a Purpose
Do you ever wonder, as you scroll through social media, “Why am I following this person?” This is a great time to think about the reasons for who you are following. If you don’t see a reason to follow that account, unfollow them. You can also stop following people or accounts that bring down your feed, such as those who post negative, jealousy, or compare their tweets to others. Instead, follow people who bring joy, inspiration, creativity, and joy to the world. It is also essential to understand that algorithms determine what we see on social media based on our interests.
Stop scrolling in a rut.
Social media can be like a slot machine that stimulates you. Even if you curate your feeds well, it’s easy to scroll endlessly for hours. It is easy to fall into a spiral of procrastination and compare yourself to other accounts with more followers, better photos, or more exciting lives. Stop scrolling! Instead, stop scrolling and go straight to the account or person that you want to learn more about. Give your feed a thorough cleaning, especially if you don’t recognize any statements. This will reduce your scrolling and improve your mental outlook.
Beware of Clickbait
Fake news and clickbait have been two major issues in recent years. People scroll through their feeds and see dubious headlines that lack context. Then, they click on hyperlinks to propagate misleading information or fake content. This is known as “clickbait.” Studies show that the most famous headlines get the most clicks on websites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Twitter, whether they are controversial or harmful. You don’t need to think about how you can get ‘news’ from provocative headlines. Instead, look at the link and find factual information from trustworthy sources.
Watch Your Emotions
While social media has many positive aspects, there are also negative aspects. Human beings are social creatures by nature. To thrive in life, we need to rely on the companionship and understanding offered by others. Social connection gives us a sense of belonging, joy, self-worth, and a sense that we are valued. On the other hand, comparing your life to others or lacking social connections can be a threat to your happiness and emotional health. Pay attention to how social media can impact your mood, actions, emotions, and overall satisfaction. It is easy to get lost in the social cycle of real and fake. It would help if you remembered that social media could sometimes show you a different picture than the real thing. Many people create illusions of perfection by using filters, effects, or photoshop. The simple truth is that no one is perfect.