Nowadays, it’s pretty difficult to steer away from social networks, whether it’s for personal use or through our business, we always seem to consistently connect. Research suggests that almost half of the world’s population uses some form of social media at the moment, spending countless hours daily on the platform that they use. However, this small form of ‘addiction’ has resulted in attention spans decreasing and heart palpitations increasing, which isn’t positive.
Social media fatigue is defined as a feeling when you’re feeling the need to withdraw from the platforms because you’re overwhelmed from your current social media use. Too many interactions, followers and friends on the sites exhausts you physically and mentally to stay connected. Privacy and boredom are other concerns related to social media fatigue. There have been many studies surrounding the effects social media can have both physically and mentally to individuals, leading to signs of stress anxiety and depression.
If you have similar symptoms, then it’s likely that you’re feeling signs of social media fatigue which is impacting your mental health and well-being. Here are 5 ways you can help yourself overcome these feelings around social media:
1. Take a step back
Although there are many people connected through social media, there’s no harm in disconnecting yourself from that world. Step away from it for however long you need to before coming back to it refreshed and with an open mind. Remember that there was a time before social media and interacting with people can easily start with a simple ‘hello’.
2. Be selective with your choices
There are various channels that you can have an account with which can be overwhelming in itself. You may find that you enjoy using other social accounts compared to others. This might be because of the content there or the specific people that you interact with. If so, you may just feel the need to focus on that one channel whilst you leave alone the others. This will still make you feel connected but with a different platform. By doing this it can ease the pressure of posting and being overwhelmed.
3. Less is more
Because you’re on social media, don’t feel the need that you have to post something every single day. Posting on a consistent basis can lead to heightened pressure of needing to post when you’re not available, almost providing an obsession to post. Think about why you’re posting and whether it’s even necessary. If you’re sharing an experience that you’ve had that’s made you feel good, feel free to but don’t think that it’s necessary everyday.
4. Find creative alternatives
Social media is a great way to pass the time and have ‘something to do’ when you’re bored or in need of something to do. This is essentially the catalyst to the start of social media exhaustion. Instead, why not go back to basics and enjoy active and creative tasks that can really improve your wellbeing. Examples can be joining a pottery class, taking up cycling or even simply interacting with friends outside of work. Keeping your mind ticking over and doing something you enjoy can seriously help with improving your mental health.
5. Have authenticity
If there’s one strong argument against social media that many experts have, it’s that individuals create personas that can be easily adopted without actually being themselves. It makes it easy for them to create an imaginary profile of their lifestyle and what they do, when in reality it’s not necessarily true. On social media, it’s important to just be yourself and authentic with what you post. This way, you’re not losing sight of yourself and feeling the pressure to live up to the life that’s been created through social media.
Social media should be an enjoyable platform to interact and feel connected with the people you care about the most. Don’t make it become a tool that dictates your life and how you live it, but simply enjoy the content that you see on it and interact when you feel the need to.
Jamie Costello is a Healthcare Assistant based in the UK. His previous experience comes from education where he’s gained a Health and Social Care NVQ and also gained work experience in several businesses, including Gary Ross who specialises in cosmetic surgery.