Do beautiful, often highly edited images of people that we see on social media cause you to have low self-esteem? You are not alone! In fact, the impact of idealised beauty content on social media has never been more prominent, especially amongst young girls – with 54% of young girls in Australia revealing that seeing idealised beauty content negatively impact their self-esteem and 60% of them wishing they had information about how to deal with this according to new research conducted by Dove*.
In light of this, Dove has teamed up with Dr. Hannah Jarman, researcher on Body Image & Social media from Deakin University, for their #DetoxYourFeed campaign. To help you to have a healthier relationship with social media, Dr. Jarman shares with us five top tips to detox your feed.
Identify the negative elements
Start by identifying the accounts and content that make you feel anxious, jealous, or upset. These may include accounts that post unrealistic content, that make you feel like you aren’t good enough, or toxic people who spread negativity.
Unfollow or mute accounts
Once you have identified the negative elements, unfollow, mute or hide these accounts. Unfollowing or muting an account doesn't mean that you are unfriending or blocking the person; you are just choosing not to see their posts. If they aren’t adding any substance to your life and, instead, making you second guess yourself, you might want to consider removing them from your feed. Take the time and be diligent when selecting and culling your following list in order to truly detox.
Evaluate your usage of platforms.
Reflect on how you use social media. Do you really need to be spending 4 hours on Instagram every day? Is it helpful to continuously compare yourself to ‘perfect’ social media lives? The answer is probably no. Instead, being present and immersive in little moments in life is super underrated. Don’t forget to live life in the moment and put your phone down. Memories have just as much power as your camera roll and Insta story! Research as well! Look into body image and how social media platforms are run to identify what type of use or content is harmful/triggering or could slip through the gaps.
Follow positive accounts
Seek out accounts that promote diversity, self-compassion, and authenticity. Look for accounts that make you feel good about yourself and your life. Consider the content and messaging they put out and consider if it truly adds anything to your day. There is great content on social media that can teach you something, guide you and make you feel positive about your own life.
Take a break
If you feel overwhelmed, take a break from social media altogether. You can deactivate your account for a few days or a week to recharge your batteries and gain a fresh perspective.