The social side of social media can be very important when you have a chronic illness and are home much of the time. It is a helpful way to feel more connected to the outside world and to other people.
A downside is when social media makes you feel more alone. This can happen when you keep seeing the best bits of a lot of people’s lives all at once. Social media quickly reminds you of the things you wish you could be doing and how different your life is because you have a chronic illness. Of course you know it is a highlights reel, with a few complaints, and poor me comments thrown in- often quite mild issues compared to what you are coping with.
Here are some steps you can take to build good habits around how you use social media so you are in more control of what you see. Pick one or two to try that you think might suit your needs.
-Unfriend or unfollow some people who aren’t adding positivity to your day.
-Keep the liked pages and followed accounts to ones you actually want filling your newsfeed and unfollow any that you don’t.
-Have set times where you DON’T log onto social media. It could be between 8pm and 8am, Sundays, when watching TV, or when you are trying to have a real rest.
-Try an app that keeps track of how many times a day you log on/for how long so you can clearly see your habits.
-Try an app that locks you out of social media apps/sites for time you set.
-Uninstall the social media apps or don’t let the apps or site remember the password. Then you have to login via the web browser or type in the password so checking social media isn’t so automatic.
-Get involved in an online community if you want some virtual social interaction. Join the Chronic Life Hacks closed Facebook group to start with (It is brand new so be one of the pioneers and help welcome others when they join). There is probably a Facebook group or two focused on each of your hobbies and interests to join too. E.g. For a favourite TV show, pets, gardening, quilting, a musicians fan page, healthy cooking.
If you have other ideas that you think might help readers, please share them in the comments section below.