Taking a break from social media gave me one of the largest and most immediate impacts when starting my healing journey. The outside noise made it very difficult, if not impossible, for me to start pinpointing my own voice again. Constantly comparing myself to curated images was steering me towards disconnection and loosing my sense of who I was.
Instagram was my go-to distraction until I realized it left me with feelings of jealousy, confusion, hurt, and a lack of worth on where I was in my own life. Though these weren't the ONLY feelings I had (I did enjoy parts of social media), Instagram is a tool and I shouldn't be using it if it creates more noise than enjoyment.
It is without doubt that my 1.5 years off social media did wonders for my mental and emotional health. I even believe I would be still off it if I wasn’t for this business! But that’s the challenge and that's what we call life. I am now on a different journey discovering how I can use social media for business and still find balance in my life.
If you're interested in trying a social media detox, start with this article. And remember, you can be creative with how you implement this tool into your life. Here are some suggestions on how to do a variation of a social media detox:
Announce that you're taking a social media detox by posting it or adding it to your bio. If you're worried about staying connected, let people know to text or call if they are thinking about you.
Go through your followers and edit. Start to unfollow people or companies that don’t leave you feeling positive or that don’t align with the changes you are making. Generally this has nothing to do with them, it’s more where you are on your journey. If seeing pictures of vacations, certain body types or even family photos derail your mental state or rattle your emotional state, then unfollow them or "Mute" them. Instagram has a feature that allows you to not see photos or stories on certain accounts without notifying them.
Start a new account. If editing your current account seems overwhelming, just start a new one. Think about if you want to make it public or private. Think about if you want to use personal information or be more inconspicuous with your identity. Start to follow accounts that inspire you, bring positivity to your life and adds value to your personal growth journey.
Use the new account to practice posting and writing without judgment or fear of how others will perceive you. Especially if it’s a private account, flex the muscle of posting what you want because YOU like it. This is a great way of practicing a life skill and to start reconnecting with yourself and reaffirming your personal values.
Switch back and forth between accounts. You don’t have to delete the other account, you can switch back and forth depending on your mood or where you are on your personal growth journey that day.
Try deleting the app icon to keep you from habitually tapping on it. It's easy to get the app back on your phone when you are ready to come back from your break.
I'd love to hear any more creative solutions or different versions of a social media detox by sharing in the comments below.