Social media — my love/ hate relationship is definitely strong with this one. As a marketer and content creator online, I’ve struggled A LOT with feeling like I was controlled by social media for a long time.
I would go on Instagram wanting to check something, and ended up spending hours (yes, hours!) going down a sink hole of profiles and news feed.
You know that moment when you had to keep pressing back on Instagram so many times, you realized you’ve gone in deep? Yep, that was me. All. the. damn. time.
It even got to a point where my relationship with social media became so negative and toxic, that I eventually took a social media detox…
At this digital age, using social media is inevitable. Even if it’s not a part of your job, having some sort of online presence (ex. personal branding) is crucial because it’s just the direction of where everything is heading.
If we can be more mindful with how we consume and use social media, we can really use it as a tool to our advantage instead of being controlled by it.
Here are 5 ways to be more mindful when using social media:
1.Delete all unnecessary apps on your phone
Do you really need to be “active” on every social media all the time? Do you really need to have all of these apps installed on your phone? Nowadays, I treat my phone as something very sacred. It’s a device I take with me literally everywhere and use it for a good amount of time in my day. Whatever I do on there, I want it to be valuable and meaningful.
I only have Instagram installed on my phone because it’s the platform that I choose to engage more on with my followers. All of the other apps, Facebook, Youtube, and Pinterest, I can access them on my desktop if I need to.
2. Turn off notification for all the apps
We have used our phone so much to a point that when we hear a ring, we feel the need to check it for instant pleasure. The notifications train us to feel like everything is an emergency and you have to always stay “in the loop” (FOMO is real, you guys).
Do not let these notifications control you. Instead, turn off ALL the notifications for social media. I even turn off my instant messengers (Facebook, WhatsApp, and Line). I only want to know what’s going on when I purposefully turn on these apps to see what’s going on.
3. Give yourself a time frame for using social media (set a timer)
It’s amazing how when there’s a time frame involved, you are so much more focused and intentional with what you were supposed to do. This concept works as well for social media!
When I want to engage with my followers on my Instagram, I set a 20 minute timer on my phone. Then within the 20 minutes, I pour all my heart and energy into replying people’s comments, answering their questions, and liking/ commenting on their feeds cheering them along. Even when I simply want to relax and browse freely on social media, I set a timer for that too.
4. Unfollow from anything toxic/ negative. Seriously.
Sometimes people don’t like to go on social media because they don’t like to see the random things that’s on their feed. But guess what? You have control of what you choose to see. Unfollow the pages, accounts, and people that do not serve you anymore. Your feed is what you’re going to consume on a regular basis. So it’s important to be intentional with curating content that would make you feel good.
Go through the list of who you follow on Instagram, or browse through your friend lists and pages you liked on Facebook. (By the way, you’ll be surprised at how many random pages you like and people you follow without remembering who they are)
Think about what kind of things you wish to see, unsee, and what you want to feel when you browse through your feed. Then, take the action to seek out accounts that portray that energy and unfollow from all the ones that don’t.
If you’d like to see more motivational quotes/ positive energy on Instagram, here are some accounts that I absolutely ADORE:
I also share a lot of meaningful captions and positive quotes on my Instagram @daringliving. So be sure to check it out if you haven’t already!
5. Track & monitor your time
Reflection is key to building self awareness. And self awareness, is key to create any change in your life. I didn’t know how much time I spent on Instagram until I tracked and monitored my time. It’s important to always track your progress and slowly see your improvements overtime. Remember that the final achievement is important, but what’s also important are small wins in between that motivate you to keep going.
> Related: 4 Ways to be More Mindful
If you use an iPhone, in the Settings you can track your time on different apps, and even limit your usage of certain apps. I also use Space to track my time. This app also allows you to see your app usage, set reminders when you have been staring at a screen for a while, and even block off notifications after a certain time. Highly recommend!
Hope you guys find these 5 tips helpful!