How to use social media, according to a mental health expert - Deepstash
Digital Wellbeing

Learn more about mentalhealth with this collection

How to manage digital distractions

The impact of technology on mental health

The importance of setting boundaries

Digital Wellbeing

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Limit your use of social media

Limit your use of social media

Commit to not checking social media during meals with family and friends, and when playing with children or talking with a partner. 

Make sure social media doesn’t interfere with work, distracting you from demanding projects and conversations with colleagues. In particular, don’t keep your phone or computer in the bedroom–it disrupts your sleep.

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Have “detox” periods

Even a five-day or weeklong break from Facebook can lead to lower stress and higher life satisfaction

Publicly declare you are on a break. And delete the apps for your favorite social media services.

You can also cut back without going cold turkey: limit your use of social media to 10 minutes a day for three weeks and you'll see improvements in your mental health. 

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Pay attention to how you use social media

Experiment with using your favorite online platforms at different times of day and for varying lengths of time, to see how you feel during and after each session. 

You may find that a few short spurts help you feel better than spending 45 minutes exhaustively scrolling through a site’s feed. 

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Approach social media mindfully

Do you notice that you get a craving to look at Instagram whenever you’re confronted with a difficult task at work? 

Be brave and brutally honest with yourself. Each time you reach for your phone (or computer) to check social media, answer the hard question: Why am I doing this now? 

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Prune

Prune

Pruning some “friends” and adding a few motivational or funny sites is likely to decrease the negative effects of social media.

  • Information about the lives of Facebook friends affects people more negatively than other content on Facebook. 
  • People whose social media included inspirational stories experienced gratitude, vitality, and awe.

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Don't replace real life with social media

When used thoughtfully and deliberately, social media can be a useful addition to your social life, but only a flesh-and-blood person sitting across from you can fulfill the basic human need for connection and belonging.

Using Facebook to keep abreast of your cousin’s life as a new mother is fine, as long as you don’t neglect to visit as months pass by. 

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