Social media can be a source of support in challenging times, but it can also become stressful. Because we can’t control what others post, social media may trigger feelings of anxiety or even depression, if people are posting negative things or posting constantly about a situation.
During the 10/27 trial, you may find social media as an additional source of stress or find that you are spending too much time “doom scrolling” to distract yourself from what is happening. If you are struggling to navigate using social media during the trial, here are some helpful tips that can help you moderate your social media use and not feel so anxious or stressed when you do use it.
Set a daily time limit: Decide how much time you want to spend on social media each day and set a timer or use an app to track your usage.
Disable notifications: Turn off notifications from social media apps to avoid distractions throughout the day.
Create specific time slots for checking social media: Schedule designated times during the day to check your social media accounts.
Clean up your newsfeed: Did you know you can mute certain words on social media? Filter out posts you don’t really want to see, or consider temporarily snoozing posts from some people if it will help ease your anxiety or depression during this time. Check out this guide for how to restrict or mute words and profiles on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
Unfollow or unfriend accounts that are not beneficial: Eliminate accounts that are not adding value to your social media experience.
Keep your phone out of reach during important activities: Avoid checking your phone during important activities, such as studying or spending time with friends.
Remove social media apps from your phone: If you find yourself checking your phone too often, try removing social media apps altogether.
Find alternative activities: Replace social media with activities that you enjoy, such as reading, going for a walk, or practicing a hobby.
Use social media for specific purposes only: Limit your social media use to specific purposes, such as networking or staying in touch with friends and family.
Set boundaries for yourself: Decide on specific times or situations when you will not use social media, such as during meals or before bed. There are even apps that will time your usage and restrict access to certain apps when the time allotment is up.
Take breaks from social media altogether: If you find that social media is becoming a source of stress or distraction in your life, consider taking a break from it altogether for a period of time.
Even though social media can often be a helpful tool, it can also become a stressful space during difficult and emotional times, like this trial. Take care of your mental health by healthily navigating your social media use and being aware of your feelings while you use it.