Is Social Media Weighing You Down?

Social media is such a huge part of our daily lives. Many of us use it for many different reasons like personal use, business, awareness and more. No matter what we use it for, there’s no denying how much it can weigh us down.

Comparisons, competition, hateful comments and trolls behind keyboards. Those are the things that can ruin our social media experiences. As amazing as social media is to find people we can really connect to and learn new things, there’s no denying that the heavier, more upsetting parts of social media have a much bigger effect on us mentally.

You know exactly what I mean. You find yourself dreading going on social media for whatever your reason may be, yet you still can’t seem to stop going on to check your feed and you end up feeling worse once you’re done checking it. Aaaaand repeat cycle.

Feel ashamed? Don’t. We all go through this because we’re only human! It’s so easy to fall into this negative cycle. The biggest issue with social media I want to really delve into today is the comparison – the true thief of joy.

We all compare ourselves to others online. Especially on Instagram – it’s the perfect platform to compare our lives, looks and material possessions. It also makes it the perfect platform to hurt our self-esteem and mental health on a continuous cycle, but that’s if you allow it to do that. It’s so hard not to get caught up in the photos of everyone’s “picture perfect” life. But that’s just it. It’s a picture that looks perfect.

kev-costello-548721-unsplash (2).jpg

Although this is said a lot, it’s completely true – what you’re seeing is a snapshot of someone’s life and the parts that are good. It doesn’t mean that their lives are as perfect as their Instagram shows or that they can actually afford what they’re buying. You don’t know if they constantly fight with their significant other or if they’re treated horribly. You don’t know if their family is falling apart or if they’re losing their friends. You just don’t know anything besides the snapshots of what they show!

Sometimes just saying that in your mind simply isn’t enough and you still find yourself comparing your life heavily to others and spiralling downward to a point where going onto your social media accounts is unbearable. I’m here to tell you this: take a break!! Seriously! Take a social media absence!

1 week, 3 weeks, 2 months, a year. Whatever you need to do, do it! You’re probably calling me crazy for suggesting this but hear me out!! A break will change your entire perspective on pretty much everything!

Back in 2013, I was going through a really rough patch in a relationship and I found myself dreading going on social media. People asking me left right and centre what me and my then boyfriend were up to, happy couples posting photos and other things that made me feel like my life was useless. I used social media to stay in touch with family overseas but I was so incredibly down on myself and in a bad point in my life, that I decided to delete my social media and it was only supposed to be for a couple of months. I ended up being off of social media for a whole year.

In that time, I really focused on myself. I worked on my anxiety and depression by learning cognitive behavioural therapy. I started focusing on eating better, discovering what new path I wanted to take towards a career, building stronger relationships with the people in my life and growing as a person. The amount of growth I experienced as a person within that year was incredible. When I stopped focusing on other people’s lives online and only worried about myself, I felt so much better. It was only when I felt good about myself as a person, that I decided to then go back to social media.

Guess what my feeling was?

Freedom. Freedom of enjoying other people’s posts without guilt or shaming myself and my life. Leaving social media behind for a period of time can bring so much clarity and growth. Something that makes you feel incredibly amazing.

Have you ever done something to help yourself enjoy social media in a positive aspect? Drop us a line on Healthy is Hot’s Instagram!