Have you ever wondered whether you are spending too much time online? Since the creation of MySpace in 2003, social media has grown so rapidly in the last 15 years. Did you have a MySpace? I did for a while, and I didn’t get a Facebook until 2006. Now, I have a Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+, etc. It’s hard to keep track of absolutely everything. But every once in a while, I can tell when I need to unplug.
You feel the need to buy new things.
Maybe this doesn’t affect men so much, but seeing all the beautiful fashion bloggers in their adorable outfits just makes me want to head to the mall and buy something pretty. Even though I already have a billion shirts, shoes, pants, and jackets, there’s always going to be more, more more. Having this mindset is not healthy. More stuff doesn’t equal happiness. But when you’re scrolling through Instagram’s endless feed of seemingly perfect people living seemingly perfect lives, that will have a lasting effect on you. Whether you want to admit it or not, the images we consume affect how we think.
You’re constantly comparing yourself to the people you follow on social media.
I am certainly guilty of this. I might start off looking at a blogger’s profile that I look up to for inspiration, but then my thoughts quickly turn into, “How do I take a picture like that? Her hair is gorgeous. I wish mine looked like that.” Am I the only one who does this? I know I’m not. But that’s why we have to change the game, especially as women. We all have insecurities, and when that inner critic flares up, we have to be strong enough to just put the phone down.
Want to read more? Check out this Cosmo article on how Instagram affects our self-esteem.
You can’t go a half hour without checking social media on your phone.
Sometimes I pick up my phone and I don’t remember what I was going to do on it. Then I put it down and try to backtrack the last few thoughts I had. That is just one example of how quickly our mind processes thoughts. I honestly should keep track one day of how often I touch my phone. That thing is covered with germs, now that I think about it. (Note to self: Clean phone with disinfectant wipe.) But I’m just glad I’m aware of it and not completely oblivious.
You take comments from strangers a little too seriously.
Half the time, people online are not thinking about you as much as you think about them. If a comment on your photo or tweet bothered you, block the person and move on. I used to get caught up in caring about what people say online, but then I realized how much it caused stress in my life. Ain’t nobody got time for that. So now I have a thicker skin and I don’t give too much time dwelling on what strangers think of me.
Here’s the big one: You don’t remember the last time you unplugged from social media.
Last year, one of my new year’s resolutions was taking a break from social media for 24 hours each month. I can’t say I kept up that resolution, but it was certainly a good goal to set. If you feel like you need to do something similar, start small. Don’t look at your phone for an hour before bed. Or better yet, turn your phone off while you sleep. I guarantee you will sleep much better. I need to take my own advice and unplug every so often. Lately, I constantly check my stats on Instagram and Facebook. It’s a bad habit that I need to break. Who’s with me?
I hope this post has made you rethink your social media habits. Social media isn’t bad. But think of how often you feel the need to check your profiles. Remember that life is so much more than a tweet or Instagram post. Have a wonderful week, my dear. You deserve it!
As always, stay encouraged, friend!