Has scrolling through social media been bringing you down lately? Does this sound familiar?
Check social media before getting out of bed.
Scroll through Instagram, click on Instagram Stories, check Facebook, look at Twitter (telling yourself you just want to be updated on the news).
Brush your teeth. Make your bed. (Do you make your bed? It’s a good habit.)
Sit on the edge of your bed. Check the phone again.
This was me last week, all before 7am: Click on Jennifer Lopez’s (JLo) Instagram Stories feed.
Watch JLo talk to you from inside a private jet, then see a gorgeous picture of her on the set of her latest video, swipe up to watch the Dinero video, go back to IG stories, and watch as she tells you how to get the JLo glow and introduces you to her entire new makeup line, then see her on the red carpet in a gorgeous gown, then looking flawless at a magazine photo shoot for Emmy Magazine.
Go to your profile. Notice that you don’t have 75.3 million followers….or a makeup line.
Get dressed, look in the mirror, notice a new wrinkle, compare your skin (and career) to JLo’s + feel like you’ve done absolutely nothing with your life.
Notice how heavy all this mind-chatter feels…almost like lead. Try to motivate yourself to do something productive, while telling yourself you suck.
In fact, sitting with my sweet boys, watching World of Dance, brings me back to fond memories of watching Star Search + Solid Gold with my dad. (Yes, I’m a 70’s baby.)
But comparing my journey to hers and then measuring myself as “less than” is actually damaging to my soul + spirit, which is why it feels so bad.
My highest self knows that I am exactly where I need to be, that I am living my soul’s purpose, and that my timing is divine.
I’m on my glorious path, and you are on yours. So let’s stop making someone else’s win, mean that we are somehow losing, ok?
I actually googled “social media + self-esteem” last week, and found that research has linked too much social media scrolling to increased feelings of loneliness and envy, as well as higher levels of anxiety and depression.
Then I realized, there’s an acronym here….
Actual LEAD. No wonder too much scrolling makes us feel so horrible. This is a pretty lethal cocktail for feeling bad.
So, what do we do? How can we have a healthy relationship with social media?
Here are 3 Steps To Recover From Social Media Stress
1) Awareness is key.
Become aware of the stories you are telling yourself about yourself when scrolling. Do you make someone else’s win mean that you are somehow losing?
JLo wasn’t making me feel bad. I was making me feel bad. I had a choice to either add meaning about my life as it compares to hers, or not.
I actually have no idea if she’s happy, if she wishes she had more time with her kids, or what her life is like, but becoming aware of my own thought choices helps me to adjust.
2) Choose a new thought.
Decide in the moment you are going down the negative habit hole of compare and despair, that you are going to choose a new thought.
Something like, “I let go of adding any meaning to what I see.” (This may be hard, since the ego is a meaning-adding machine + loves to make most things mean that we are somehow inadequate).
Or try, “This is the highlight reel of this person’s life.” Remind yourself that you are seeing the “best of” moments designed to project an image of a person’s brand. It’s all marketing. And it’s meant to be uber-fabulous.
As you let go of the envy, you can instead remind yourself that “The happier I am for someone else’s success, the more in alignment I am with my own.”
I can actually choose to be inspired by JLo. Whether you are a fan of her music or her acting, or not, one thing is for sure: she’s crystal clear about what she wants, she goes after it, she doesn’t take no for an answer and she owns her power.
I can choose to be inspired or dejected, the choice is always mine.
3) Unplug + Recharge
This is the most important step of all.
The next time you have a free minute and feel yourself reach for your phone. Stop. Realize it is an addiction, it’s not making you feel good, and instead simply sit and become mindful of your breath.
Here’s a quick exercise you can do (right now even.)
Take a deep breath in for 3 counts. Hold the fullness of the breath for 3 counts. Exhale for 3 counts. Hold the emptiness of the breath for 3 counts.
Do this for a few minutes. Not only will it help you release stress in the body, it will also help you quiet the ego-mind. (You know, the one that would rather you go back on IG stories and have you continue scrolling until you feel bad again.)
And when you do, which you will. Go back to step 1.
No matter how you decide to unplug and recharge, just know that it will be one of the best things you can do for your body, mind + spirit.
And whoever might be sitting across from you when you decide to stop scrolling, will most likely thank you for becoming more present and truly connecting.
Leave a comment below + let me know how you are going to commit to unplugging + recharging this week!
Love + Gratitude,