social media and depression

Use social media healthily to prevent depression

12 April 2021 - 17:38

Use social media as a tool to enrich your life rather than it becoming a nasty bad habit.

Written by Michè Edwards

There’s been growing statistics that show a link between social media and depression. Research suggests that people who limit their time on social media tend to be happier than those who don’t.

But, do we completely blame social media for the increase of depression?

social media and depression

Does social media cause depression?

It’s said that social media doesn’t cause depression but can bring on habits that contribute to depression.

Social media is a platform where we interact, develop relationships and that essentially connects us. There are so many ways social media has contributed positively to our daily lives but like many things, it can start becoming a bad habit not minimised.

social media and depression

Too many of us process the post of others with “perfect lives” and end up feeling inadequate of our own. But, how do we decrease these negative effects of social media?

Treat social media as any other habit

Looking at social media as any other healthy habit gives you a good reminder to not let it develop into a bad one. Same as the habit of exercise for instance where you do it before work – and not let it take up all of your day while still allocating time to the rest of your responsibilities.

Safely use social media

For any activity not to become a bad habit that takes over our lives, we need to minimise time spent taking part in it. A healthy way to go about using social media is formulating an effective ‘on and off’ schedule for yourself. You could set a timer and when it goes off you exit social media platforms or put your phone down and use that time on hobbies that don’t require you to access your phone.

Someone with social anxiety might find this to be a challenge as social media is a way to heighten social skills through the net. However, it’s a good idea to work with a therapist that can guide you into lessening the need for your phone. As someone prone to social anxiety you’ll realise that you can go into the world and be social all on your own, without a device.

Get right with your mental health

One of the reasons why you’re going on to social media only to feel bad about yourself is that you’re comparing your life, your journey to someone else. This is a good indication that you need to take a hold of your self-esteem and mental health as a whole. The simplest thing as repeating comforting affirmations every morning such as ‘I am worthy, I am capable..’ goes a long way. This goes for many other bad habits you’ve developed. It all starts with your mental state.