Social media is an incredibly powerful entity in today’s world. I have found that it is a place for expression and education as well as negativity and distraction.
Nothing is perfect, but I wanted to redirect how I used social media in the past into how I use it now. Here is a breakdown of five social media modifications to make for the better.
Turn-On Notification Settings
Although phone screen times are available through settings, an actual reminder makes a major difference. I was concerned about the amount of time I spent on TikTok, so setting notifications to remind me of how much time I used the app was extremely eye-opening.
TikTok also allows for a weekly screen time update feature to let users know how much time they are spending on the app. Notification settings are a great accountability measure for social media usage.
It also helps to question why you are on social media so often. Are you compensating for something that you are missing in your regular life? Is social media used as a distraction from your problems? Is Snapchat your way of avoiding homework? Is TikTok how you cope with missing your friends? Try to truly understand what you are using social media for.
A few social media apps I limited my usage for were easily removable from my device. I barely used Twitter, but completely removing the app saved me storage space and time. It was a quick way to lower my social media usage. I did not end up missing Twitter.
Evaluate Followers & Following
We are who we surround ourselves with, and I believe that includes social media. I started looking through who or what groups I was following and making adjustments if they did not fall within my values or goals. I unfollowed a lot of time-consuming reel accounts on Instagram.
I started actively seeking accounts that would better me as an individual. I wanted to keep up with learning French and followed several accounts to practice my vocab. I followed more news accounts to keep me in touch with what is going on around the world.
Social media can be an amazing thing to connect people and circulate knowledge. I successfully changed what the posts on my feed looked like.
I have never truly regretted anything I posted online. In general, I did not post frequently on any of my social media accounts. However, there are posts I reposted that I wish I did more research on. Going to college opened my eyes to how information is blindly accepted sometimes, especially on social media.
Send your support online to trusted sources and professionals. Remember to try and educate yourself on the topic you feel passionate about and keep an open mind. Although, this should not stop you from expressing yourself online.
When I post on social media, I now try to imagine if I am spreading positivity and knowledge. I felt like social media is already filled with a lot of negativity and complaining, but I can choose to try and support solutions and equity.
The true beauty of social media is its interconnectedness. I appreciate that I am able to stay connected to relatives who live far away and friends from decades ago. I began to interact more with people on my social media than merely observing them in my feed.
Do you have a relative you wish you could be there for more? Reach out and show them your support. Looking for opportunities? Let your friends and family be resources for you. Let social media be a resource for your life.
Social media has endless capacities to better impact your life. We have seen the positives and negatives of social media. I have found my life more enriched by these modifications, but every person is different and finds what works best for them.
Have you stopped to consider how to get the most out of social media?