THUNDER BAY – We live in an age where information, and disinformation travels faster than ever before. We seem connected to video screens, our smart phones, iPads, Xbox controllers, televisions and computers.
All of that digital engagement can be both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, it can be a great way to stay connected with friends and family, and to find and share information quickly.
On the other hand, it can be a distraction from real-world interactions, and can be damaging to your mental health, and to the mental health of young people. How many times has your child vanished into their Xbox or iPad for an entire day? Or been up all night texting or gaming?
Excessive screen time and excessive social media can lead to a lack of face-to-face communication that are essential for developing social skills.
It can also lead to feelings of loneliness and FOMO (fear of missing out).
Too much reliance on social media can also be detrimental to your overall well-being, as it can lead to anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbances.
The key is to find a balance between your online and offline lives. You should limit your daily use of social media and make sure to spend quality time connecting with others in real life.
You should also strive to be more mindful of the content you are consuming and the impact it has on your mental health.
By making conscious choices about how you use social media, you can make sure it does not have a negative effect on your social lives.
Breaking away from social media can be a difficult process, but it is achievable with the right mindset and a few practical tips.
Firstly, it is important to recognise the potential effect that social media can have on our lives. It is easy to become addicted to the quick hits of dopamine received from notifications, likes and comments, but this can be damaging to personal mental health.
Ask yourself seriously, does it really matter in your life to know someone you barely know on social media said….blah, blah, blah?
Taking a step back and assessing the impact of these apps on our lives is a great way to start the process of breaking away from social media.
Secondly, it is important to set realistic goals and be mindful of your time isspent on social media or gaming. Limiting the time spent on social media each day and blocking notifications to reduce distractions can help. Social media can be a powerful tool, but only if you use it in the right way.
Finally, it is important to find other ways to fill the time that was once spent scrolling through feeds. Focusing on other activities such as reading, exercising or spending time with family and friends can help to reduce the amount of time spent on social media.
By incorporating these steps into our daily lives, you can break away from social media and create a more positive relationship with your online lives.