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If social media is making your anxiety or depression worse it’s time to make some changes. It’s so easy to just keep doing things that don’t serve your mental health out of habit but we’re here to live our best damn lives and that means getting rid of the shit that’s bringing us down. I struggle with both depression and anxiety and I love social media so I’ve had to do plenty of detoxing to make sure I wasn’t harming my mental health (anyone else love to check Instagram at 3am?). Here are some tips to complete your own social media detox for depression and anxiety.
I have a whole podcast episode about social media and mental health you can check out here or stream it below.
Keep Your Perspective
Don’t let what other people post on social media made you feel bad about your own life. Everyone wants their life to look glamorous AF on social media but the reality is a lot different than what you are seeing on Instagram. That sexy world-traveling couple you are so jealous of isn’t going to post how they both got food poisoning last week or spent their first week in Bali having a huge fight. Remember that no one’s life is how it looks on social media and keep some perspective when you’re scrolling. Don’t fall into the trap of comparing your life to other peoples lives. The fact is you have no idea how anyone feels when they wake up in the morning or what kind of challenges they’re currently facing.
If you are following someone that doesn’t make you feel good unfollow them. Be really ruthless about this and make it your mission to have the most uplifting and encouraging social media feeds you can create. On Facebook I stay friends with pretty much every person I’ve ever met but I do unfollow anyone that brings down my vibe. You don’t have an obligation to read someones social media posts just because you went to dolphin camp together in 8th grade. If someone is posting stuff that is killing your vibe get rid of that person. Your mental health is more important than keeping up with Becky from your hometown. If you feel bad or guilty about unfriending people just remember that you’re prioritizing managing your depression and anxiety. You don’t need to feel bad about doing what is best for YOU.
Start following people that inspire the shit out of you. Find the authors of your favorite books and add all the hosts of your favorite podcasts. Join some Facebook groups to meet new bad ass women (I have one focused on mental health you can join here). Watching Instagram stories in the morning has become one of my favorite things to do to get me pumped for the day. I follow so many bad ass ladies on Instagram and I love seeing them slaying their businesses, workouts and being incredible humans. If you’re looking for inspiring people to follow on Instagram check out my Instagram (shameless plug!), Angie Lee, Jordan Cheyenne and Stephanie Bellinger. Start making all of your social media full of people that inspire you and make you feel good.
It’s easy to waste hours scrolling your news feeds (guilty) but I’ve recently been trying to be more mindful of the time I spend on social media. If you’re really in the habit of spending mindless hours on social media uninstall the apps that are sucking most of your time for a while or install an app to limit the number of hours you can spend on them per day. I’ve been trying to switch out the time that I spend mindlessly scrolling social media with reading ebooks on my phone. I’m slowly training myself to open the Kindle app when I’m bored instead of Facebook and I’ve found the switch has been a lot easier to make than I thought. Ask yourself how your most ideal version of yourself would spend her time and start doing those things instead of mindlessly refreshing Instagram.
Take a Break
If social media is making your anxiety or depression worse or just not helping your mental health take a break. Try going a weekend or even a week or a whole month without looking at social media. After you detox you can evaluate how you feel and figure out how you can participate in social media in ways that will improve your mental health and make you feel good. We’re so conditioned to being on social media all the time I think everyone should take a break once and awhile. The next time you’re scrolling try some of these journal prompts instead.
I hope these tips help you do your own social media detox for depression and anxiety. If you feel like social media is making your depression or anxiety worse do something about it ASAP. Start kicking everyone off your newsfeed that brings you down and add bad ass people that inspire the shit out of you. If you’re really having a hard time with it take a break or limit your time on the apps you use the most. You’ll feel better in the long run if you start making some small changes to use social media in a healthy way.
I am not a licensed therapist. If you are suffering from a major disorder and need treatment please seek the help of a professional. If you need help finding a mental health care provider call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit BetterHelp to talk to a certified therapist online at an affordable price. You can download a free printable list of hotlines here and join the free mental health support group on Facebook here. This post contains affiliate links, you can read my full disclosure policy here.
I would love it if you join my internet family! Checkout Facebook/Twitter for informational articles and Instagram for inspirational quotes to keep you going. Follow me on SnapChat to see me get through the day to day grind (also videos of my cute pup!).
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