How To Have A Better Relationship Between Social Media and Your Mental Health
Several studies have shown a correlation between use social media and mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and sleep issues. I think it would be unrealistic to ever advise anyone to cut it out completely because you know I love me some social media. For me as much as it can be damaging when misused, it can also be useful. Like anything, it can be unhealthy if you let it and it depends how you view it.
I have misused it in the past and had an unhealthy relationship towards it but here are a couple of techniques I've found to make it healthier for my mind.
Follow People That Are Good For Your Mental Health
Recently I made the decision to fill my social media, particularly Instagram with people I can relate to. I don't follow fitness accounts that show perfect bodies all day or accounts that show a perfect life. That's no shade to those who do. If you wanna spend all your time working out, you do you boo.
I found that after getting an office job I put on some weight. Nothing major but I began mentally torturing myself about everything I ate and trying to work out every night. And when I didn't eat right or work out I felt shit and like I was a failure. Got particularly bad when one person asked if I was pregnant on Insta. Thanks hun.
So I unfollowed all the fitness accounts and instead followed body positive accounts like; Grace Victory, Ashley Graham and BodyPosiPanda. I'm learning to love my extra bit of weight, my cellulite and stretch marks and stop pursuing the perfect body.
View It As A Highlight Reel
Remember when you are looking at someone's account, its like a movie trailer; they're showing you the best bits. Sure it looks like they're always on holiday or they're always brunching or they have the perfect relationship. What they're not showing you is the 60 hour weeks that paid for that holiday, the times when they're eating Supernoodles in bed and the 3am drunken arguments. Social media is not a true representation of someone's life. The majority of people don't post about their flaws or inner struggles. Ain't nobody on this planet is perfect. We all got shit going on.
I don't care what anyone says, there is nothing petty or pathetic about unfollowing or blocking someone who you don't want to see or who you don't want to see you. Your social media is yours and if you don't want someone on there, you don't have to have them there.
Don't Go Lurking
We've all been there. We look to see what an ex is up to and the next thing you know you're on your ex's, new girl's, grandmas, friends, daughters, boyfriend's, friend's profile. If that's how you wanna live your life that's fine, just be careful you don't double tap. But if after looking at someone's profile, you walk away feeling bad about yourself or anxious or depressed, then re-evaluate this behaviour and ask yourself if its healthy to you and your life.
Social media is great and all but have you ever tried real life? There is so much more to life than spending all day staring at a screen. Spend a lunch where you don't snapchat what you eat or wear an outfit you don't post on Instagram. Spend a few hours with a friend where you don't check on Facebook. Go live your life