Social media is an excellent way to connect with others. No one can deny the fact that social media is an interesting platform to connect people from all around the world, bringing friends together from any place at any time. It allows you to meet people that you wouldn’t have met otherwise, and it will enable you to stay in touch with people that you wouldn’t be able to keep in touch with otherwise. But, despite all the facts, social media can indeed harm mental health leading to certain disorders like depression, anxiety, and much more if gone out of control.
Why are we not taking a break from social media? Why are we not limit our screen time and take a step towards real-life connect? We should spend some time with our families who are in the thirst for the love and affection that they need to get.
Social media can breed comparison, and for some, it can even become an addiction. It can be easy to get tied up in the drama that comes with social media. Social media breaks are a great way to ground yourself and remind yourself what matters in life. So, what can you do while you take a social media break to improve your mental health?
Ways to Take Social Media Break
Nowadays, Social media detox becomes necessary due to social media addictions. Let’s take a look at how taking a break from social media can help you to improve your mental health.
Stay connected while disconnected
It’s essential to stay connected with others even when you’re disconnected from social media. You can step away from Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, but talk to your friends via video chat, text, or phone.
COVID-19 has come with many challenges that impact mental health, and one of those challenges is social distancing. Social distancing, however, doesn’t have to mean not talking to people at all. For our emotional health, we need to connect with others and socialize. You can prioritize that, and understand that social media isn’t the only way to go about connecting with others from a distance.
A common reason that people need to step away from social media in the first place is that it is a highlight reel, and it is fake to some extent. You may see posts from your loved ones, but do you truly know what’s going on in their life?
When you step away from social media, you can talk to people on a deeper level and get a sense of how they’re feeling and talk about what’s going on in their lives. That’s one of the many ways that taking a social media break is healthy; it can take you away from reality, and if you step away for a moment, you get to connect with reality again.
Most of us try to disconnect from social media, but they continuously check social media. This feeling disturbs them. In this situation, it is required to deleted social media apps from your phone if you really want to take a social media break and avail its advantages. It is better to check your friends’ social media activities from your desktop at a decided time. It will help you stay away from social media, but you won’t miss the essential things if you don’t want to leave social media friends alone.
A goal should be set and accordingly set a time limit of using your phone. Many apps are there that can be downloaded through which you can track the amount of usage. It is very important to set a time limit for your own mental peace.
Discipline to use your phone
There should be a discipline to use your phone. You can prepare a time table to pick the phone calls and check social media notification. Also, you should not check the phones in certain areas or zones when you are at the home or office. These areas may be the kitchen, dining table, bedroom when you are going to sleep, etc. Similarly, you are sitting on your work desk, meeting room, etc. when you are at the office.
Turn-off Social media notifications
You would not believe it, but this would be of great help to take a break. I personally do this. Turning off notifications would not hamper your other work, and you will not continuously check your phone again and again.
Mute your phone
It is very important to keep your phone down when you are sitting with your loved ones or spending quality time with them. Smartphone or social media cannot replace family and friends. It is quite annoying when people see you giving the top priority to your phone. Phone kills that love and respect, so the best way is to keep it out of reach. You can mute your phone or enable do not disturb option to stay with yourself and loved ones.
Do things the old fashioned way
Taking a social media break means that you’ll have a certain amount of free time. This free space allows you to go back to basics and get back in touch with old hobbies or methods of communication. Have you ever thought that it would be fun to have a penpal? Letter writing is seemingly lost art, but it can be cathartic, and it’s fun to receive letters in the mail. You can write to your parents and grandparents or ask a friend if they want to write letters back-and-forth.
You can also engage in solo hobbies when you take a social media break. For example, you may have loved drawing when you were younger, but perhaps you haven’t had time to do it due to work or have been too distracted by technology.
During your social media break, get in touch with the things that you love to do. Remember, things that have nothing to do with what’s going on online. Doing something that you enjoy is good for your mental health, and sometimes, social media takes up more of our time than we’re realizing. We unintentionally distance ourselves from our hobbies.
You may send a greeting card and gift to your family member or friends, instead of writing “Happy birthday” on their social media. It will show your deep love and respect for your loved ones.
Spend quality time with your family
Social Media free days are very important to be set for taking healthy breaks. It can allow you to connect with your loved ones by spending quality time or can engage in some tasks or activities. Set either Sunday or the whole weekend according to your will.
Take time to quiet your mind
There’s something to be said for meditation and other relaxation practices. Meditation is shown to have a positive effect on mental health and mindset.
There are a lot of guided meditations out there that you can use to get started if you are new to meditation. Using your social media break to slow down and quiet your mind is something that can be beneficial to you long-term.
If you integrate grounding exercises, meditation, or any other routine that you find relaxing into your life while you’re off of social media, you can continue that practice when you return to social media.
As a result, you will find that your stress levels are better managed and feel more connected with your inner self. If meditation isn’t for you, that’s okay. There are a lot of ways to learn how to manage your stress levels effectively, and one of them is to go to counseling.
Online counseling is an excellent resource for anyone looking to improve their mental health or work through any issues in their life. Maybe, you’re trying to take a social media break, and you find that you feel as though you’re a little bit addicted to social media platforms.
Alternatively, a social media break might not be enough, and you might find that you’re still struggling or that you need someone to talk to when you feel alone. Whether you see someone in person or online, mental health professional like a therapist or counselor will provide a safe space for you to open up about anything you’re going through. Search the network of online counselors at BetterHelp and find the perfect fit for you.