Often I hear friends and family talk about social media burnout. Many feel addicted to their social media accounts or they feel like they don’t enjoy the content anymore but find themselves scrolling mindlessly anyway. Well, I’m here to help you shape your social interactions in a way that won’t burn you out but will instead add meaning to the relationships you maintain via social media. Without ado, here are three tips you should try today:
Post content that is meaningful
Share your vulnerability
When you post, think about why you are posting. If you are feeling lonely or vulnerable, or in need of validation from others, own it! Everyone feels that way at times. Explain how you’re feeling. It doesn’t have to be long, but it will show your vulnerability and make people feel closer to you. It will allow them to more meaningfully engage with your post – they can relate to you, or let you know how much you mean to them. Post content that you think will help others. How will what you post improve their lives? Will it make them smile, feel joy, laugh? Will it make them pause and consider a new perspective? Will it encourage them to take a certain vacation, a leap of faith, or try a new restaurant? Think of others while you post, even if it is ultimately a post for yourself to help you get the attention you desire.
Start and end your day with something more tangible
Don’t do it first thing in the morning nor last thing at night. Nothing on your social media apps will affect the kind of day you have nor the sleep you get. If the people who truly care for you and matter in your daily life really want to tell you something or share something with you, they will message you, call you, or show up at your door. Protect your head and your heart during our most vulnerable times of day. Whether we intend to or not, we compare ourselves to others. Human nature is to be self-focused. There is something called the spotlight effect. We are our own harshest critics and believe that others notice us as much as we notice ourselves, which simply cannot be true. When you’re looking at photos, videos, comments…etc. of others, you can’t help but compare that to yourself. Do not let yourself fall into that negative or critical thought cycle. Make sure you ground yourself with your present moment first thing in the morning and last thing at night. (Plus, the blue light is not good for your eyes.)
Don’t mindlessly give out likes.
Comment. Analyze the photo and the caption the person wrote. (My favorite game is to not look at the name of the account who posted and instead search the photo to see if/who I recognize in the post, first.) Engage with your friend more meaningfully and tell them what you appreciate about what they posted. We tend to think that likes mean more when we receive them than when we give them. Think about this. How quickly do you double tap on Instagram just out of obligation, or based on the name on the account rather than on the quality of the content? Yet, when we receive likes, we think that the person truly found what we posted to be inspiring. They really do like our vacation. They think our pet is cute. They like our new outfit. By taking the time to think about why you are liking something, you’ll be able to add more value to the person who posted’s life. You’ll be able to say “I miss you” or “I appreciate you” without feeling like you’re just liking in order to get something back.
When you follow these three tips, you’ll start to see that the social media burnout you may have been feeling starts to fade away. Social media is just a tool and it’s up to us to decide the ways in which we use it to either enhance or to take away from our mental health, happiness, and sense of community.
If you enjoyed this post, please give it a like! I’d love to discuss these ideas with you. If you agree or disagree, have questions, or want to add something, please leave a comment!
Thank you for reading!