Social media has become the new way that most of us are connecting with people, but this has rapidly increased during lockdown. Although staying connected with loved ones is good for our well-being, we’re over-consuming ourselves with the online world, increasing our risk of mental health problems including depression.
On average, people spend 2-4 hours each day on social media, especially young adults. This is having a huge effect on people’s lives, as they’re missing out on other daily activities. So much time is taken up due to how addictive it has become to check various social media platforms throughout the day, meaning there’s less time to enjoy the other things we love.
Social media has become a place where everybody promotes their ‘best life’, resulting in users feeling the pressure to meet up to certain standards, such as having a luxurious lifestyle. This hasn’t been made any easier by the rise in certain influencers, whose job is to promote a certain lifestyle by working with brands to sell products.
But in reality, nobody has the perfect life 24/7 that they portray online, even celebrities and influencers. People don’t post their bad days, just the best bits of life. Even more, a lot of time, money, and effort is put into capturing the perfect image to post.
Spending more time online and on our phones connecting with people has meant there’s less need to speak to people in person. The need for this has increased during the Coronavirus Pandemic where social distancing is the new norm. It may have become much easier to send a quick message to a friend, but as social beings, this isn’t having a great impact on our health.
What can YOU do to limit your social media usage?
Make a start each day to limit the number of times you check your social media. Keep your phone out of reach inside a drawer during your workday so you don’t have the urge to regularly check for updates.
Find a connection with other things in life that don’t require you to use your phone. We’re so used to taking it out everywhere with us to stay connected or capture memories through our camera to upload on social media. Taking a break will do wonders for your health. Going for a walk somewhere peaceful with a friend or loved one without your phone will give you the chance to see there’s a lot more to life than social media.
Taking a social media break is healthy when you know it is becoming a problem. Delete your apps for a week, or even a month to see how you feel after a breakaway. Find new, positive activities that you enjoy to distract you from the temptation.
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