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How to 'Weed' Your Social Media for Your Mental Health

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Sifting through your social media and eliminating people that do not spark joy is a form of self-care. If you’re hopelessly addicted to your phone like I am, you know that you end up checking the same apps almost as soon as you close them.

So why do we do it? Because we’re nosy and looking for affirmation. We get so caught up in the threat of comparison, that it is actually better to look at other people’s lives than to even think about our own. We find ourselves obsessively checking, as if anything ground-breaking has changed within the last time we checked.

I personally have struggled with this for years, but I finally decided to weed my social garden. These are my tips on streamlining your social media to make it work for you, not against you.

My advice is to start simple, removing the people you don’t actually know in real life, as there is no opportunity for confrontation. Start by unfollowing any accounts of corporations or celebrities that no longer spark joy. There is something to be said about toxic celebrity culture, and if someone makes you feel bad about yourself, you don’t have to look at them.

Social apps can be a great tool for your mental clarity if used correctly, but there is a fine line between a detriment and a strategy. If you went to high school with a girl and haven’t spoken to her since, it is OK to say goodbye. If you still follow your ex-girlfriend’s cousin, it’s also OK to say goodbye. Curating the photos and opinions that come up on your timeline is a tactic to make sure that checking social media is not something that will trigger symptoms of mental illness. It’s hard to take care of yourself when we are so enveloped in other people’s stories.

It is important to note that there is also a dangerous implication of weeding your social garden too much so you are only fed exactly what you want to see or hear; it is also crucial to maintain a balance. In these times of consistent device use, it is more important now more than ever to really assess your consumption habits and adjust accordingly.

Getty image by Natalia Darmoroz

Originally published: March 16, 2021
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