Social Media Making You Feel Down? Here’s What To Do

This time of year can be a minefield online

With Christmas break coming up many of us will be spending even more time than usual on our phones. We’ll have hours to kill and likely want to find an escape from spending 24/7 with our families.

But, this time of year can be a minefield online. Between people sharing what they got for Christmas online, others documenting every fun activity they’re doing over the break, and even some showing off how they’re ‘working on their summer bodies’ – it’s easy to feel bad about yourself every time you tap on an app.

If you want to avoid allowing social media to get you down this festive season you’ll be glad to know there’s actually plenty you can do to dodge it. From exercising that unfollow button to switching off here are our top tips to protect your mental health while online.

Only follow what makes you happy 

It may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people and accounts you follow that doesn’t make you happy. Maybe it’s someone from school who’s been mean to you before, or an influencer whose lifestyle makes you feel jealous – whoever and whatever it is, they probably need to go.

Take a look through your feed, whether it’s on TikTok, Instagram, or something else have a scroll through each account that crops up and evaluate whether or not they add to your social media use or not. If they only bring negativity for you, unfollow them. We recommend filling your feed with accounts that only bring you positivity. Try to find accounts that inspire you, teach you, or just bring a smile to your face.

Set time limits 

If you do want to spend time on your phone, that’s no problem – why not set time limits while you’re at it? Give yourself 20 minutes to scroll through TikTok and no more. Tell yourself that you have a limit of 15 minutes on Instagram and then you need to put down your phone and do something else. If you don’t trust yourself to stick to it why not get someone else involved too? You can set a challenge with your friend to hold each other accountable for not logging off on time, or ask your siblings to take your phone away if they catch you on it over your limit.

Block and unfollow 

As we said above, your social media feeds should be a positive place, so if something isn’t bringing you positivity, get rid of it gal. Block and mute keywords that stress you out, whether it’s ‘Covid’ or ‘Christmas’ say bye-bye. And tap that unfollow button on anyone who serves you no purpose on social media, your mental health comes before anything else, remember that.

Focus on hobbies 

Do you enjoy dancing? Or maybe you love painting in art classes? Whatever your favourite hobby is, find more time to do that. By spending less time on your phone you’ll give yourself time to do other things that you enjoy. Instead of sitting on Netflix while you scroll for two hours, set up a little area for you to paint while you watch your current TV series instead. If you enjoy dancing but rarely get time to do it outside your extracurricular activities whack up a tutorial on YouTube for 20 minutes and follow it.

Scrolling through your phone may feel satisfying in the moment, but in the long run, it serves little purpose. By focusing on hobbies instead by the end of Christmas break you could have 4 books read, or a new dance routine to show for your time, and not just endless hours quoting TikToks.

Avoid comparison 

‘Comparison is the thief of joy’ and ain’t that a fact. It’s so easy to compare your life to someone else’s that you see online, but try your best to not do this. Remind yourself that we all only put the very best of our lives online, most of which isn’t even real in the first place. Never compare your worst to someone else’s best. Your bestie might post all of the amazing Christmas presents she got onto her story but she probably didn’t mention the fight she had with her siblings later on that day, little we see on social media is real – perspective is key.

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