In its infancy, social media was a way to share memories and connect with friends and family, no matter where we were around the world. But as platforms developed to become more visual, and our online networks began to grow outside of our immediate circle, so did the concept of publicly curating the best version of ourselves.
Over the past few years the level of negativity across social channels has started to outweigh the positives and the dark side behind the continued ‘perfection’ we seem to strive for online is becoming more apparent. Body shaming comments are a daily occurrence, filters are created to alter our appearance, and the constant stream of the idyllic lifestyle is having a real impact on people’s mental health. Despite this, I still think there are ways we can look to create a healthy space on social media.
Be selective over who you follow
Next time your scrolling through your news feed think to yourself ‘is this person bringing value to my life’? If you’re following someone who is creating a toxic environment online with hate, anger and negativity then why would you want that encroaching into your digital space? If you wouldn’t want to meet up with that person for a coffee then chances are you aren’t gaining anything from following them online.
Be mindful of the comments you leave
The old saying of ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all’ applies to social media too. That one comment that you leave on someone’s photo could cause more damage than you realise – so just take your finger off the publish button and work on being a better person, because to be honest if you are leaving nasty comments online you should probably have a good look at yourself.
Remember that nothing is as it seems
A lot of the time (probably 90% of the time) what we’re seeing on social channels is the best case scenario. Whether someone is having a good hair day, the light might be hitting one corner of their home perfectly, or they had time to make a beautiful dinner – we rarely see the bad days, the mess or the raw emotion behind those select moments. Don’t beat yourself up because your life doesn’t look the same – because it’s likely that behind the lense, theirs doesn’t either.
There are some great influencers out there who are making a conscious effort to document their normal day to day life and I am here for it. I’m going to put together a post with my top ones to follow soon so keep an eye out!
Take a digital detox
Let’s face it, the past year has been mentally exhausting. We’ve been sat inside and our screen time has soared. Watching others thrive in lockdown when you haven’t could get quite overwhelming. When you start to feel like it’s all becoming too much then take a step back. You can silent your notifications or if you have an iPhone then set yourself app limits and downtime on the ‘screen time’ section of your notifications.
Do you have any tips on how to create a healthy space across your social news feed, or was there a reason why you felt like you needed to started to change the way you utilised social media? I’d love to know!