Social Media

Social media can be wonderful for a number of different reason. For example,  it can be used  to stay in touch with friends and family, to stay up to date with the news, and even help companies create better relationships with consumers. But social media also has the potential to waste blocks of time, significantly change one’s emotions for the worse in an instant, cause individuals to get wrapped up in something that is not worth their time, and even post something that they aren’t proud of. Incorporating mindfulness while engaging on social media sites is one way to ensure that your time is being used in a positive manner. Following is a step by step guide on how to do just that.

Short Version

  1. Before engaging in any social media check-in to how you are feeling, both emotionally and physically.
  2. Try establishing some intentions as to what you are going to do on the social media site(s), so that you do not wander aimlessly for too long. This step is optional but it is worth trying a couple of times to at least get a feel for it.
  3. Be completely mindful and present of what you are seeing on the screen in front of you and do not let it cause your mind to wander. If your mind does start to wander then gently bring your attention back to what is on the screen.
  4. While using a social network create space between yourself and what you are seeing so that you don’t get wrapped up in anything that may stir your emotions. Try to view everything from an objective perspective and stay as neutral as possible.
  5. Check-in to how you feel after you are done with social media for the time being.

Long Version

  1. Prior to logging on to a social media site, for example Facebook, get a general understanding for how you feel, both emotionally and physically. Check-in to how you’re feeling, in both your body and mind.
  2. Try to have a purpose prior to engaging on social media. One example of this is to tell yourself you are going onto Facebook right now to post something and then look through your newsfeed until a certain time. At least attempt to have some intent going into the site. This will increase the likeliness that you will not get lost in the land of social networking, at least not for too long.
  3. Once you enter the site be completely mindful of whatever you encounter, that is be completely in the moment with what is front of you.
  4. Create space in between yourself and whatever you see. If you come across something that excites you, either in a good or bad way, look at how you feel as objectively as possible. Do not deem feeling that way good or bad, just try to gain an understanding as to what on the site causes your emotions to stir.
  5. If you set a purpose before engaging in social media then stay mindful of your intent throughout your time on the sites. If you catch yourself getting off track it is okay, just gently bring yourself back to what you had in mind doing in the first place.
  6. After signing off the site, or sites, check-in once more to see how you feel. Compare that feeling to how you felt before signing on. If you set an intent did you stay closely aligned to it or get off track many times? Do you feel that engaging in social media made your day better, worse, or made no difference? Continue to get a sense of what is going on internally. Basically be mindful of how engaging in social media has effected you mentally, and even physically.
  7. Carry on your day with mindfulness and stay consumed in the present moment. Try your best not to think about your time on social media earlier. Stay engulfed in the now.