Social media can help you connect with others by providing a space to keep up with loved ones and communities. However, social media isn’t always helpful. In fact, reports that using social media platforms too much can increase your risk for depression, anxiety, loneliness, self-harm and more.  

Taking a break or limiting your use can help you sleep better and boost your mood. Here are a few ways to limit your social media use. 

  • Use timed breaks. You don’t have to cut out social media entirely. Try taking a break from one platform at a time. Alternatively, start with a week away from social media to see how you feel. Note how this affects your wellbeing and overall mood. 
  • Switch out social media for learning or educational apps.  You may find yourself opening social media apps without much thought. You might scroll through Facebook or Instagram to reduce boredom, read news or play games.  Try removing these apps from your home screen and replacing them with more educational alternatives such as apps for podcasts, books or for boosting your wellbeing.   
  • Set time limits. Most social media apps like Instagram allow you to set a time-limit reminder. Try limiting yourself to a half hour each day. You’ll know it’s time to close the app when the notification pops up. 
  • Remove the apps from your phone.  Another great way to limit your use without completely cutting it out is by removing the apps from your phone while keeping your accounts. That way, you can still access them, but only from a computer.  
  • Turn off notifications at night. Leaving your phone in another room before bed is ideal but unrealistic for many. Instead, try silencing notifications through each app’s settings to help you wind down at the end of the day. 

Limiting your social media use will boost your self-esteem, lower your risk of mental illness and allow you more time to enjoy the world around you. 

Source: SupportLinc EAP – Wellbeing Blog;