Social media can be a very happy place. What’s not to love about chatting with friends, sharing and checking out each other’s photos, and playing games. I particularly love it for keeping up to date with family and friends that I hardly ever see, and for the uplifting and funny posts people share on there. Unfortunately it can become a negative space too. I find myself feeling anxious and agitated when I’ve spent too much time scrolling. At best we compare ourselves to others and judge ourselves poorly, or become inundated with negative information, and at worst we can become involved in online bickering or experience cyber bullying. And when it’s on your phone and with you wherever you go, it can be very difficult to escape. So with the aim of focusing on happiness, here are 7 tips for staying happy on social media.
1. Post positively
Create and share posts that are fun, funny, uplifting, happy and light. You will enjoy this, and so will your friends.
2. Play Nice
If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything. Avoid gossip, complaining and criticising and try not to get involved in negative conversations. Put simply… Be kind!
3. Careful sharing
These days it’s really easy to share and spread ideas that are negative, hateful or hurtful without even knowing. If you do want to share things about current events, research the source so you know who and what you’re representing.
4. Keep it Real
Have family members and close friends (people that really care for you) as your social media friends. This way if something happens you will have genuine real life people you can turn to. It also means the events and photos you share will be genuinely celebrated and liked… In short, the experience will have more meaning.
5. Fight offline
If you are having a disagreement or argument with someone, it’s best to do it in person. I know this one is pretty tricky, but it’s easier to read someone’s tone and meaning when you can see them, or at least hear them over the phone. Likewise they are less likely to misunderstand you.
6. Take a break
Don’t spend all your time online. Put your phone away, leave it at home or disable the social apps so can enjoy the moment you’re in with the people you’re with. Mindful use is key to staying happy on social media.
7. Don’t take it personally.
Other people’s lives can look amazing on social media. Interesting, adventurous, abundant and fun… because they only post the best bits. Don’t compare your real life to other people’s highlights.
The number of likes and followers you have does not determine your worth, only you can do that. You control your social media accounts (not the other way around) so keep an eye on how it makes you feel. If you are feeling in any way sad, anxious or depressed while using it is, it is essential to switch off, to not even log in or if things get really bad, cancel your account.