Imagine if we re-charged ourselves as much as we do our phones.
Social media is brilliant, it connects friends and families across the world, it helps anyone who wishes to start a business and it gives platforms for people to share their voice, their ideas and their opinions. I mean we really do have a lot to be thankful for. Yet too much time online can have a negative impact on your self-esteem and your mental heath.
I always say that you shouldn’t compare yourself to others because we’re all on our own path. Yet when you’re sitting at home on a Saturday night and you find yourself scrolling through social media, looking at picture perfect images, it can be hard not to compare. We know that people share just snippets of their life online, but having constant exposure to other peoples glorified success might make us wish our circumstances were different. We might wish we were as successful as others appear to be or we might wish our life was as easy as others seem to have it. Eventually impacting our self-esteem and belittling our own achievements.
On my Instagram I post photos of myself in my home, these photos make my home look lovely but I only ever post photos in my kitchen or in my bedroom. This is because the rest of the house is a building site! But you never would have guessed this from the tiny square image which you see online. So please remember that what you see online is never the full picture.
Don’t worry I’m not going to tell you to cut out or even cut down on social media. I’m simply going to share some self-care strategies for social media, so your time online will leave you feeling inspired!
Make your feed positive
Let’s take Instagram for example, how do you feel when you’re scrolling through your feed? Do the people you follow make you feel inspired, motivated and optimistic? Or does your feed make you feel less worthy, unsuccessful and insecure? Take a look at who you’re following, maybe you’re following tones of Instagram models who only post bikini photos, following too many accounts like this might make you feel insecure about your own body. Instead try following accounts such as kayla_itsines, who posts before and after photos of peoples inspiring body transformations. Accounts like this one will help you feel more encouraged and optimistic.
Don’t scroll at sunrise
You’ve barely woken up and you’re already online, seeing what you’ve missed in those seven hours you’ve been asleep. I’m no saint and I would like to quit this habit too, because I think the first thing you do in the morning should be positive and something which puts you in a happy mind set. Such as saying good morning to your family, writing or even just saying what your grateful for, stretching or simply making a coffee or a herbal tea. Because if the first thing you do when you wake up is go online, you’re putting yourself a risk of seeing something which makes you feel unhappy and or inadequate.
Don’t loose your friends
By this I mean don’t follow too many accounts, making it difficult for you to see what your loved ones are posting. When you’re following too many accounts you’re less likely to be updated with what your friends and family are posting, because your page is taken over by the random accounts which you’re following. I suggest you follow only your favourite accounts which are positive, encouraging and make you feel inspired with every single post they share. You might see on my Instagram that following hundreds of accounts, which means it’s difficult for me to see what my friends are doing. That’s why I have a second Instagram account where I share my personal photos and follow my friends, family and a handful of accounts which inspire me. My Instagram account for Those positive Thoughts is then separated from my personal life.
Delete “friend” request
If someone you don’t know has sent you a friend request or maybe you do know them but you simply don’t want to connect, then please delete. You don’t need to feel guilty for not accepting their request. It’s your page and it’s up to you who you connect with. If there’s someone who you see on occasions (in real life) unfriending them might make things a little awkward, in this case you can always hide their posts. This way you can avoid any confrontation but also not have to see photos of their dinner or cat or whatever they post every time you go online.
Forget about perfection
Do you feel like the photos you’re sharing aren’t good enough or pretty enough or cool enough? There is so much competition to take the perfect photo, whether it be finding the best lighting for a selfie or to prepare your dinner in the most “Instagramable” way. Sometimes the pressure can get too much to the point where your dinner has gone cold or you don’t even share your photo because it’s not “good enough”. Don’t worry if your photo isn’t “perfect” and don’t worry if your tweet isn’t as funny as usual. Post it anyway and carry on with your life.
Don’t worry about trends
Just because everyone else is practising yoga and eating acaci bowls, it doesn’t mean you need to as well. Trends come and go so just share what makes you happy and if you’re not consistent with when or what you post or if your Instagram feed doesn’t flow from photo to photo, it doesn’t matter.