Your Social Media Consumption

Why is it Beneficial to Spend Time Away from Social Media?

Your Social Media Consumption

In today’s society, we spend lots of time on social media, whether it be from our computers or mobile devices. We can instantly log into our social media profiles whether it be from home, in between two back to back classes, or during a brief lunch break at work. Whether you post often on social media platforms, or simply just read the posts of others, social media has a tendency to take up a lot of our free time. Sometimes, taking a break from it may be necessary.

I recently went on a two week vacation where I spent most of my time off of social media. Before this, I was constantly on social media for most of each day, and started to see how tiring spending all this time online could become. During my two weeks off, I went on many outdoor hikes and was regularly surrounded by beautiful nature. I noticed throughout these two weeks that I began to feel more and more refreshed. It’s very easy (in my own opinion at least) to become antisocial in person and be “social” through online platforms instead. (There is nothing wrong with socializing with others online. It just doesn’t have that same satisfaction that speaking to them in person would have.)

Just to be clear, I am all for social media, I’m just saying that sometimes, taking time off from it can be healthy for you as a person. What’s also important is what you are consuming regularly on your preferred platform. If you are constantly reading depressing stories/posts while on social media, then that will have a negative effect on your mood. On the other hand, if you are usually watching viral videos about people performing acts of kindness and generosity towards others, then you will likely be inspired to treat others this way. There is the saying that “you are who you hang out with,” and this applies to what you consume on social media.

This brings up another point, that you are in complete control as to what you read and watch while on social media. Amongst all the platforms, you have the option to decide what you want to follow, like, and comment on. It’s important to keep in mind that if you like or comment on a post by another user, then you will see more posts from that person. This is the algorithm of the social media platform at work. It wants to keep you on the platform as long as possible. By interacting with a post, it will tell the platform’s algorithm that you are interested in that user’s posts and wish to see more of them. If you don’t like what you are seeing on your social media platform, then my suggestion would be to unfollow what you dislike and go follow more of what you wish to see. Social media, in this regard, is very customizable, and we should make sure that we are surrounding ourselves with positivity.

Even if you are unable to go on an official vacation from school or work, you can still plan a designated amount of time to stay off of social media. For instance, rather than checking social media as you usually do during your lunch break, you can spend that time solely eating and save your time on social media for the evening. Make whatever changes to your social media schedule you need in order to stay healthy and happy. Your mental health and well-being are more important than any aspect of social media.

If anything mentioned in this story resonates with you or rings a bell, then perhaps consider taking a brief vacation from social media and then return to it afterwards. When you return, make any changes to what posts you are seeing, if necessary. Otherwise, try making a change to your normal routine regarding social media. Remember that on your social media profile, you are able to decide what you want to consume.

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