Self-care can look like many different things- taking care of your body, making a healthy meal, doing a craft project, or reading a book. What it’s not- scrolling social media on your phone.
Many people feel an increase in anxiety, depression, and agitation after spending time on social media. So why do we continue to use it? Social media platforms are designed to be addictive. All the likes, comments, and shares reinforce addictive tendencies. It activates the brain’s reward center by giving you a dopamine hit, a “feel good chemical” linked to pleasure.
Like all things, there needs to be a balance. Deleting your accounts is not the answer! Just as restricting your diet and never eating a piece of cake is not a healthy balance for your life. Birthdays happen, the cake will be eaten, and pictures will be posted for friends and family to see them. If we restrict ourselves to an extreme, then when it’s reintroduced, people often binge on it. Just like food, people binge on social media after reactivating their accounts. Social media has its place in our lives, but if we spend more than an hour a day on it, we must reevaluate our use.
How else could you spend your time? Maybe read a book, pick up a craft project that you used to love doing, chop vegetables so that you make healthy food choices, call a friend, or spend time in your garden. Continue to observe your habits and feelings when using social media platforms. And remember to take care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally by engaging in the world around you.