Right now, we are more connected than ever. It seems so simple in our minds to take time away from our phones for a day but in reality it can be harder than we thought. We have all been there – catch ourselves scrolling and we don’t even know why. Think about when you are scrolling mindlessly, what feelings come up when you see certain content on social media. Do you get annoyed, anxious, or defeated (maybe all of the above?)? Social media is a tool with the powerful ability to shift our moods, throw us into comparison traps, and make us isolated. With the new year approaching, let’s leave some things in 2022, and your social media tendencies can be at the top of that list. You can start prepping yourself now to cleanse your social media in these ways:
- Limit Screen Time: Before you do this, think about how much time you think you’re spending on each app everyday. Then, open each app and look at your daily screen time in their settings. What was the difference between what you thought and what it actually was? Then, begin limiting your screen time by opening your phone’s settings and set your maximum screen time for each app. Sometimes we need a little push or an external way to regulate ourselves and this is a simple way to ensure you aren’t spending hours scrolling on Tik Tok before bed. As you do this, you’ll naturally be put into the present. Start to think about what comes up for you now. How often are you reaching for your phone? What are you doing instead? What is it like to sit in the here and now?
- Change up your feed: Some of us have been on some form of social media now for over ten years so a lot can change for us during that time. Update your feed according to current life. Start this by monitoring your feelings that come up for each post you see when you’re scrolling. When you get negative feelings from certain posts, mute or unfollow these accounts. Find and follow accounts that you’re interested in and that will contribute to your overall well-being! If you love cooking, follow some great recipe accounts! Doing this will keep your explore page fresh and help you stay in a more supportive headspace all day.
- Practice mindfulness: Be mindful when you are scrolling. Take in what space you’re in while you’re scrolling. Are you sitting in front of your desk? In bed? Out to dinner? If you’re with others, reflect on why you’re doing that rather than interacting with your friends and family. Also, think about what you’re getting out of the time you’re scrolling. What time is it filling? What could you be avoiding? Reflecting on and noting what happens when you pick up your phone may help you put it down more often than you think!
- Unplug: If you’re feeling totally overwhelmed by current events in the world (you are still checking election results), give yourself a break.. It may be time to log out of all your apps for a bit. (psst… maybe even delete them from your phone to ensure you won’t be tempted to open them back up!). With this, make sure you plan around the time you want to unplug and notify your friends and family. Of course, in case of an emergency, make sure your friends and family know where to reach you. Also, keep in mind the time away from “being connected” could get tough to handle, so begin preparing ahead of time.. Think of what you’re going to put in its place: maybe carry around a book you’ve been wanting to read and create a playlist for your next walk.. While being disconnected from social media, you’ll have the opportunity to reconnect with yourself.
We hope this helps! Which one will you be trying before the year ends?