Don’t Let Social Media Destroy Your Wellbeing: 5 Ways To Manage

Don’t Let Social Media Destroy Your Wellbeing: 5 Ways To Manage

There are pros and cons to pretty much everything in life.

Social media, for example, can help us learn and grow, connect and find out tribe.

At the same time, however, social media has also been shown to exacerbate anxiety and depression, to worsen mental health and sap happiness.

How, then, do to take the good and manage the bad? Well, if you’d like some answers to this question read on …

via Forbes by Tracy Brower

This is the time of year when you may be spending more time online—looking for great party ideas, sharing photos from your holiday gatherings, shopping and filling your additional down time with scrolling.

Social media and too much time online can overwhelm you with bad news, take you away from connections in real life and result in depression, anxiety and even burnout. But you can manage your time and make the best of what’s online—without letting it damage your wellbeing.

The Bad News

Spending time online isn’t all bad, but it can be terrible. Through online platforms you can find and reconnect with long lost friends, get creative ideas for your gifting or connect with fellow bird watchers.

Feeling Inferior. But spending time online can also be damaging—and one of the primary reasons is because you make comparisons against others, frequently coming up short yourself. A study by the University of Tennessee Chattanooga found 60% of respondents said they compare themselves to others online. And after using social media, 53% felt envious and 36% felt worried. The popular saying is true, “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

Feeling Disconnected. Another problem with time online is it can take you away from nurturing deeper connections. Spending time on social media scrolling, liking and commenting may feel like truly connecting, but it is like a meal of empty calories. If you eat nothing but candy, you’ll feel full but won’t get the nutrients you need for a healthy life. On social media, with tons of activity, you may feel like you’re connecting, but you aren’t necessarily getting to know people more deeply, developing trust or growing relationships with the people you can rely on in the middle of the night when you get a flat tire or when you are in the doldrums and need a listening ear.

Feeling Disheartened. Social media is also so much bad news. By spending too much time online, you’re marinating in the sound bites which get attention and fuel reactions—the negative updates or the pessimistic reports. Greater time online is correlated with higher levels of depression, anxiety and mental health problems largely because of the consumption of unhappy information.

The Good News

The good news is you can manage your time online and get the most out of it without letting it drag you down.

#1 – Avoid Comparisons

It’s easy to say, but hard to do: Avoid comparing yourself with others. If you feel like you don’t measure up, remind yourself that what you’re seeing is highly curated with selected photos, great lighting or photo-shopped images. But also resist the conclusions that you’re somehow better than others. Coming out on top in a comparison makes you feel superior, but it also separates you from others. And when you lack openness and need to protect your image, it can get in the way of friendships, trust and feelings of connection—all of which cause reduced wellbeing.

Consider culling the list of people you follow. If you’re keeping up with others who cause you to feel inferior or who bring up emotions of regret or sadness, unfollow them. Focus on following accounts which are interesting, inspiring or energizing to you. And when you share, be authentic…

… keep reading the full & original article HERE