These are my 3 steps to a healthy social media relationship and how to start healthy social media habits. This is also episode 23 of the Imperfection with Intention Podcast. If you prefer to listen, you can click the player below or go on your favorite podcast platform!
Listen to the Post on the Podcast here!
I’ll say it, I had a problem.
I was addicted to social media. It totally invaded my life. Every time I went ANYWHERE beside work or home, I wanted to document every detail for social proof. Anytime I had a lull in my day, my hand went instinctively to the Instagram app.
After a while, I knew I HAD to do something different. Not only was I wasting the majority of my day (and my life) scrolling on social media, I was trying to live my life for it, too.
It took a while to figure out a good balance, but I think I’ve got it. These are the steps I take to have a healthy social media relationship and I know these steps can help you too.
#1. Decide Why You’re On Social Media
You may read that and decide to skip it and keep scrolling. But I’m begging you! Please don’t scroll!
Because when you don’t have a clear idea as to WHY you want to be on social media in the first place, then you’re going to mindlessly scroll. And before you know it, an hour passes.
Just like with any new goal, finding your true motivation is the most important first step!
My goal is to help you be intentional about your time on social media. Because here’s the thing, it’s WAY too easy to fill every free moment of every day with it. Then you’ll feel crappy because not only have you wasted the majority of your day on it but now you’re comparing yourself to others wondering why you’re not living life like they are.
So make a list, either in your head or on paper, of why you like social media and why you want to continue to use it. You can read my list to get your creative juices flowing.
- I like to connect with family and friends.
- I like to get inspired by what I see.
- I want to continue to make new connections.
So if my time on social media isn’t accomplishing one of these three things, then I’m wasting time scrolling mindlessly. If I notice I’m on social media NOT doing one of these three things, I stop because I know that if I keep going, nothing good will come from it.
#2. Create Boundaries for a Healthy Social Media Relationship
Are you ready for the hard part?
I’ll be honest, these suggestions are simple in nature, but they’re hard to actually do. This is all about self-control… But here’s the nice thing about that… you can do it!
You’re not depending on someone else or your environment (two things you CAN’T control). No excuses, baby!
Decide on Times YOu don’t need to use social media
Are you the type of person to scroll Instagram when you’re walking to a bathroom break at work? Or how about when you’re sitting in traffic waiting for a stop light to turn green?
Or here’s a better question: Are you not able to sit with yourself without anything to do or look at?
Ok sister, if you answered “Yes” then you’re addicted.
I know! That was harsh to hear and you may even be offended. But that’s ok. I say that because I was there! And looking back, I knew I was addicted. If this is you, I’ve got a few tips!
Delete Your Favorite Social Media Apps
Calm that heart rate! I don’t mean do a social media fast, but I do want to make it a little harder for you to use social media.
Just like dieting, quitting social media cold turkey for a week isn’t going to cut it. If you’re addicted, then the first thing you’d do after that week is gorge. You’d spend more time than you usually would on it because you’d feel deserving.
Cutting social media entirely form your life won’t work. Moderation works.
So why are you deleting your apps? Because you can use your phone’s browser to access Facebook or Instagram.
Is it as nice to use this way? NO!
It’s not as convenient, and that’s the point! This is an easy way to start a new healthy social media habit or start a healthy social media relationship.
You’ll sign in to do what you actually intend to on social media (like we talked about earlier) and you won’t stay on longer than that because you’ll probably get frustrated with the browser version.
My advice? Use this method until you can HONESTLY say to yourself that you aren’t as addicted to social media. Only then allow yourself to re-download your favorite apps.
You don’t have to upload everything in the moment
I LOVE Instagram stories. They’re a great way to show what happens in real life.
But, have you ever been in this situation: You’re at an event, taking a short video for an Instagram story, and you look down at your phone to find the right GIF to go with your video? Then something awesome happens but you missed it because you were too busy editing your Instagram story?
Ugh, how tragic are moments like this?!? This is just ONE example of how social media can get in the way of what’s actually happening in the moment!
So I know what you’re thinking, “Great, so it’s either I can share fun things I’m doing, or miss out on the fun?” And the answer is NO!
Here’s what you need to do:
Take these pictures and videos on your camera app NOT your Instagram app.
After the concert, dinner, or whatever fun event is over THEN upload to Instagram and add the fun GIF’s and captions.
Don’t waste that special moment finding the right thing to say or the perfect filter, do that on the Uber ride back.
Get off Social Media when you start to feel bad
This is pretty self-explanatory, but it’s worth saying. If you’re spiring into deeper resentment towards yourself because your life doesn’t look like strangers on Instagram then it’s time to stop.
If you’re hunched over scrolling on your phone, then put it away and GET UP and go for a walk. Don’t just switch over to another social media app. Drastically change what you’re doing! This is the key to getting over negativity.
An account making you feel less than worthy? Unfollow them
Even if it’s your sister, your best friend, or anyone else you feel “obligated” to follow. If looking at their feed is making you start to compare yourself or brings out negative self-talk, then it’s time to unfollow. You can always follow back when you’re ready.
Most likely, though, the types of accounts that actually make you feel unworthy are from the people you’ve never met or haven’t seen in a while. Remember, you have NO obligation to follow anyone that doesn’t make you feel good. Even if it seems like everyone and their mom is following that account.
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WHAT ABOUT YOU?
How are you keeping your relationship with social media healthy? Let me know in the comments below!
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