(HealthyResearch.com) – Only in 2020 could “doomscrolling” become a household term. Nearly everyone has been overwhelmed this past year, and for all the good social media might do for us, it’s added a lot of fuel to everyone’s fire, also.
Between COVID-19, the elections and all the other insanity we’ve had to put up with, we’ve become oversaturated with doom and conflict, which could be affecting our mental health. For some of us, it may be time to say enough is enough and back away from social media for a while. Here are a few tips that might help.
Is Social Media Causing More Bad Days Than Good?
Social media might be a fun way to connect with friends and family, but it can also be a great way to ruin a good day. Pew Research recently conducted a study on reactions to content people are regularly exposed to on social media.
They found while 88% of people surveyed reported finding amusement in much of what they saw, 71% said it also sparked anger. In addition, 44% of respondents reported seeing content that triggered depression, and 31% said social media made them feel lonely at times. According to a Healthline report, all those negative feelings could lead to increases in stress hormones and deteriorations in mental health.
Get Rid of the Apps
Ignoring Instagram, Facebook or Twitter can be difficult when they’re available on the phone at any time. Some people may feel compelled to pick up their devices several times throughout the day simply to scroll for updates — and during scary times, the habit can easily turn into doomscrolling. Eliminate the temptation by removing the apps.
Fill the Gap With Something Fulfilling
Now more than ever, we all should be thinking about self-care and personal enrichment. Why not take the time normally devoted to social media and put it to good use? Pick up a new hobby or revisit interests that may have fallen to the wayside. Take a hot bath or find a nature trail to hike. We merely witness life when we scroll through social media; maybe it’s time we found ways to do more actual living.
Be Ready Before Returning
Unless it’s a job requirement, no one is mandated to go on social media, and there’s no penalty for unplugging for as long as a person needs. Why rush back? The chaos will still be there, waiting to suck the unwitting back in. Users should make sure they feel ready before they give it another shot.
Some people may benefit from limiting their exposure. Research has shown restricting social media use to 30 minutes each day can help people improve their sense of wellbeing. When returning to social media, try setting short time limits on scrolling. Healthline suggests finding apps that cut users off news feed or media pages after a set amount of time.
Social media isn’t all bad — but it isn’t always good for us, either. A break every once in a while may help those of us who are overwhelmed clear our heads and catch our breath. Some people find it so beneficial that they never look back.
~Here’s to Your Health & Safety!
Copyright 2020, HealthyResearch.com