How to Use Social Media and Keep Your Mental Health

There has been a rash of articles lately about how spending too much time on social media is bad for your health, and that it can be addictive. And I suppose it can be true, depending upon who you follow and how much you care about what others think. But there are ways to minimize social media’s effects on your mental health. I’ve written about a similar subject before, in case you missed it: How to Avoid Bad News on Social Media and Keep Your Sanity.


Be Conscious

This is perhaps the best and also the most difficult way to minimize the negative effects of social media on your mental health. Paying attention to how you feel can be a chore. And many people scroll mindlessly. Sometimes using social media as a news feed is handy, and there are lots of ways to react to what is seen. And sometimes, unless you have your guard up while you’re strolling, seeing political rants can be upsetting.


Hide People’s Feeds

On Facebook, you can easily hide what you see in your newsfeed. In fact, you can unfollow a person’s feed without unfriending that person, and thus avoid hurt feelings if you feel obligated to stay connected. On Twitter, you can mute someone without unfollowing them. And on Instagram, I find that the people I engage with the most are those I see in my feed the most often. The reverse is true, too: if you don’t engage with someone you’re unlikely to see them in your feed much unless they have a sponsored post.

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Just Stand Up

I don’t mean stand up to bullies. I mean literally stand up. That junky tree needs to be chopped down, the mail needs to be checked (between rainstorms these days), and the cats need to play with the red dot. Especially the cats and that red dot! We’ve all heard how bad sitting is for us, so why not get up and move around?

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Limit Time Online

Again, this is a difficult one, especially if your job involves sitting behind a computer. I like to eat lunch away from my desk, at the very least. Even if you walk into a different room for a few minutes, it’s a good break. If that isn’t enough, you might like these 6 Apps and Programs That’ll Help Limit Your Time Online on Social Media. The In Moment app will actually block access if you go over your allotted time limit.

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Lately, I’ve been immersing myself in hobbies such as knitting. It’s a quiet hobby, so I can knit at home, or I can go out and meet people who knit — much preferred. And it turns out that they’re the nicest people, too–all introverted and polite, even at that big knitting conference I attended recently (Stitches West).

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How Do You Get Away?

How do you escape from social media? Do you have a favorite hobby that dovetails with your work life? Leave me a comment. Please and thank you!

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