“Social media is an amplifier of our actions, thoughts and feelings, whereas Mindfulness is the art of being conscious of every action we take, every thought we think and every emotion we experience.”
We are living in a totally different world now, post pandemic, where the importance of being social as well as mindful has increased dramatically. Social media is an amplifier of our actions, thoughts and feelings, whereas Mindfulness is the art of being conscious of every action we take, every thought we think and every emotion we experience.
Social Media consumes us, let’s face it. No matter how hard we try to consume social media, it invariably turns out to be the other way around. Especially in this new, post pandemic world, where we have spent a good amount of our entire year in front of computer screens and scrolling social media sites, the power and impact of social media in our lives is unarguable. Having said that, it becomes very important for us to pay attention to what is it that we are ‘allowing in’. We cannot totally ignore being socially active, but we can be mindful of the things we ‘let in’ and therefore get influenced by. Now, more than ever before, we want to be mindful of not catching on to the negativity and sadness that is widespread on social media and the world as a whole.
Below are 7 mindfulness practices that will make your social media consumption worthwhile
Focus on your WHY
Before you join the bandwagon and get your fix of instant gratification and achievement reels, take some time to focus on WHY is it that you are going to spend your precious time on social media. Once you are clear about that, it will be easier to make a mental note of when to stop scrolling and look for particular information, connection or inspiration that feeds into your WHY. Moreover, the time then spent on social media will be outcome driven and not mindless scrolling and letting the negativity seep inside you.
Be very intentional about how you want to feel before going in
It is easy to get consumed by other people sharing their world tour experiences, images, videos, personal achievements, business wins, etc. and feel negative and ‘lesser thereof’ due to that. Hence, be mindful of the fact that ‘grass is always
greener on the other side – only for those that forget to acknowledge and be grateful for the grass they are standing up on’. What people tend to share on social media is very extreme – the very good experience they had or the very bad one. Choose positivity and inspiration and set up an intention to mindfully stop scrolling on the positive and to ignore the posts that will sadden us.
Be aware and Beware
Be in the present moment as much as possible, consciously investing time to learn and grow your own self. Being in present moment allows you to be mindful of your WHY you’re doing what you are doing and presents to you what is it that you have set an intention to seek. Be constantly aware of the precious time you are spending in return of your scrolling activity. Beware of the fact that it’s a slippery slope. It is easy to get carried away by the beautiful pictures, the funny videos and the dramatic copywriting skills of many. It is also easy to get carried away by politics and world news in a way that often gets very time consuming and inappropriate.
Pick and choose quality connections
Do not connect with one and all on social media, without learning more about them via research or shared connections. It is also very important to go thru their feed to verify if the person shares a similar voice and interest as yours or is this something that will augment your learning and make your time worthwhile on social media. Also, make sure your connections address your WHY and help you learn and grow positively at all times.
Focus on the right metrics
Being outcome driven is the best way to consume social media. It is just as important to set the outcomes in a way that strategically align with your WHY. The metrics you want to look into is the impact you were able to make in people’s lives by sharing your voice, by inspiring others to achieve their dreams, by business earned and the bottom line impact you were able to make in people’s lives. Merely tracking vanity metrics (reactions, comments, shares, etc.) and being enslaved and excited by them, indicates a heightened need for external validation and instant gratification, that may not always lead to a happy outcome and might negatively impact our mental and emotional health.
Avoid being judgmental
Focus on being mindful of your own self and avoid judging others based on how they show up on social media. Do not judge anyone for what they share as it is highly possible that whatever they have shared is merely surface level and no way indicates how deeper of an impact a particular situation, person, event or happening has had on them. Always remember that we are each on our own paths and have different ways of dealing with our thoughts and emotions. Being non-judgmental and empathetic is the best way to go about it.
Share and spread positivity as much as possible
There is a lot of envy, grief, negativity on social media already. Avoid being a carrier of that and instead, spread kindness and positivity as and when possible. I’m no way discouraging you to sway away from your authenticity and put up a positive façade, instead l’m encouraging you to look at things in a different perspective and cultivate a habit of looking for positivity in every situation. The power of positive thinking is not just limited to our presence of social media, but impacts our life overall.
Lastly, be mindful of your actions, and remember that while your social media accounts might be ‘free’ for browsing, you are paying a heavy price in terms of your time, mental space, and sanity for its consumption. Therefore being mindful of what you do online, will positively impact your life offline, including your relationships, your job and your reality overall.