If you speak in hashtags, can’t stop scrolling through Facebook, or are Snapchat as we speak, you may need to consider a social media cleanse. Follow these five simple ways to break free from feed.
Guess what? Social media isn’t reality. People present the best versions of themselves in the digital world—it’s a highly curated collection of perfect pictures and over-agonized captions. There is no such thing as effortless OOTD (outfit of the day) posts. And what’s not pictured at that New Year’s Eve midnight balloon drop is the sticky floor and sweaty shoulder-to-shoulder dance floor. Furthermore, studies show that FOMO is really just a fancy hashtagged term for anxiety and depression. Always remember: they are never having as much fun as you think they are and that girl took 37 selfies before posting 1.
Delete, Unfriend, & Unfollow
First, delete any social media apps you haven’t used in the past few months (#sorrynotsorry Tumblr). Then, filter out any negative influences—and be ruthless doing it. Start by weeding out any unsavory characters and accounts. Unfriend that guy from high school who posts racist rants, unfollow your ex-boyfriend (and his new girlfriend), and unless you get some sort of positive inspiration from Kylie Jenner’s booty-centric pics, unfollow. If you’re feeling pressure to get married, click the little grey triangle above their notification and select “unfollow”—that way you can remain friends but avoid all of their ring, engagement, wedding, honeymoon, dog, and baby photos, but still remain friends and check their page when you want a quick update. When in doubt, unfollow. Always remember: you can resubscribe or add them back if you feel the need.
Limit Your Daily Intake
You’re essentially going on a social media diet, so this isn’t the time to gorge yourself on Buzzfeed quizzes. Instead, set a 15- to 30-minute timer each time you go on social media and allot specific times to check it. Preferably don’t schedule this time in the morning (there is nothing worse than being sucked into work emails before you even emerge from under the covers), before bed (the light from electronics disturbs your slumber), or during meals (the distraction can cause you to consume more calories). Always remember: just because someone sent you a Facebook message doesn’t mean you have to drop everything to respond right away.
Find Better Inspiration
After you do an audit of all your social media, fill your “following” page with accounts that feed and inspire you. Follow your favorite authors, influencers, and genuine friends IRL (delete your frenemies). Some of our personal favorites include: Angela Coppola for gorgeous illustrations (you may have seen her on this site), Levo League for career advice, and of course, FOREO for regular MYSA inspiration. Always remember: follow what energizes you and delete what drains you.
Just Stop Scrolling
One of the most effective ways to cut down on the hours you spend on social media is leaving your phone, tablet, laptop—and any device that gives you access to social media—at home (or at least tuck it into your bag or pocket and turn off your notifications). Stop carrying your phone with you at all times—you probably don’t need it on that walk around the block with your bestie. Always remember: stop to enjoy those little moments and your current company instead of being distracted by something or someone elsewhere.