Change Your Relationship With Social Media



Are your feeling conflicted about social media? 

When The Social Dilemma aired in 2020, the American Journal of Epidemiology had published a report that concluded "A 5,000-person and study found that higher social media use correlated with self-reported declines in mental and physical health and life satisfaction." American Journal of Epidemiology, 2017.


Getting to the root of my own personal dilemma. 

Before I even knew that this kind of research was being done, I sensed that social media was playing a huge part in how I was feeling from day to day, whether it was negative, positive or simply overstimulation. I decided to take back control over my own life, emotions and creative sustainability.


Here's how I took control over my social media experience and made it a creative ally. 


1. Sometimes starting over is better.

For example, a Facebook overhaul allowed me to create an entirely new account where I could reconnect with friends and family I actually know, unfollow people and content that continually posted triggering information. Instead, I followed more creative businesses and public accounts. 

You can do this with all your accounts, and you'll notice that your feed will change!


2. Not all platforms need to have my personal opinion on everything.

Choosing when and what platforms to offer my opinion to allows me to conserve my energy! When I really have something to voice, I take time, think about it before offering it publicly. Most of the time I will journal on it or create a blog post. 

Sometimes it's better to hash out personal opinions in a group setting with other trusted group members because let's be real, some of our opinions simply aren't helpful, are only for laughs or triggering itself!  


3. Posting for "likes" and "follows" alone gets old quick.

Hustle culture has told us that the best profiles or business pages are the ones with the most likes and follows and people get sucked into this race. But I have found that many of the really good content feeds are the ones you personally value and this is all subjective. 

The average users are individuals who just want a creative outlet to share our passions. For me, this is my number one priority! The likes, follows, shares and cool comments are the bonus, not the purpose. 


4. Exploring other platforms for engagement sparks creativity. 

If you are growing weary of using the same few platforms that contribute to mindless scrolling and doesn't feed your creative needs, consider shifting to another platform for a while and learn how to use it and engage there.  


| Also read: Be Prepared for Distractions in Creativity


5. Taking a break from social media is not only healthy, but also smart.

Shuffling out apps from my phone for periods of time every year allows me time to completely unplug.  What I like to do is leave a note that tells my friends and family that I will not be as active and how else to reach me if they need to. This gives me the much-needed time to reengage fully with myself!


The most important factor was how quickly I began to feel better about my engagement and connection to social media. 

This plan keeps a strong boundary and in times where I fall back into a pattern of overindulgence, I come back to this list as a reminder! 

Social media isn't our enemy, but it does need to be intentionally used and will require self-awareness to identify when you need a complete break or make adjustments. 

For additional resource and perspective on this topic you can read, How To Unplug From Technology When You Need a Break- Catherine

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