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Social Media Action Plan
Take a minute (or two) this week to clean up your social media.
We’re switching it up a little bit today and I have a little project for you to think about. For me, social media has evolved significantly over time. Just a couple of years ago, I really only followed people who I directly know or a handful celebrities who I had an interest in. Now we might follow mostly people who you’ve never met before and who specialize in a specific type of influencing. It changes the way we interact with social media and, depending on who you follow, can influence how you feel about yourself and your life when you are scrolling. 1
The people we follow make a pretty big difference in how we interact with the apps - Instagram, Tik Tok, Facebook, etc. - and can influence the ways that we interact with ourselves. First, let’s take an inventory of how negatively or positively social media is impacting you.
Do you feel better or worse when you scroll through social media?
Do you compare yourself, your body, or your life to the people you see in a way that makes you feel badly?
What percentage of the people on your feed look like you? Body type, acne, skin color, budget for clothing, etc?
Do the people on your feed make you feel like you need to change yourself? Do those changes feel in line with your values or beliefs?
If you had to rank your social media experience with this scale, where would you fall?
1- positive, empowered ————— 5- neutral ————— 10- negative, disempowered
Once we have a better grasp on exactly how we are currently supported or not supported by the people we’re following, there are things we can do about it! Here are my tips for ensuring your social media feed is doing more to support and empower you.
Your feed should look like the real world - try to seek out accounts with a variety of body sizes, skin color, ages, genders, perspectives etc. If you are following a bunch of thin, white, young women your view of what a “typical” person looks like is going to be incredibly skewed. Yes, it can be really helpful to have people who look like you on social media, but I actually encourage you too look to create more of a “real world” for your feed instead. Normalize normal bodies!
Balance out the education, pop culture, and friends you see on your feed. Education is great! But if you are noticing that you’re feeling a lot of pressure to always be “on” and never get a chance to rest//relax… it might be too much. Pop culture is great! But if you’re noticing constant comparisons to the luxurious lifestyles of people with significant privilege (money, time, body type)… you might be ingesting more than feels good. Friends are great! And honestly, I could just leave it at that. Yes, we can still compare ourselves in unhelpful ways to our friends, but usually we also know a bigger picture for the people we actually know and don’t get as stuck in the idea that their life is “perfect.”
Add in positive messaging around things you are working toward - there are so many disordered eating//ED recovery accounts on social media, therapists who share snippets of their typical therapeutic messages, and so much more. Add in a couple people who have a kind and compassionate voice to help you work on those things that aren’t helpful to you. Here is your permission to delete the accounts that make you feel like you can never do enough, have enough, be enough - nobody needs that. You can’t shame yourself into a version of yourself that you love.
Check out who your favorite accounts follow - If you love a specific dietitian’s message on Instagram you can look at who they follow and potentially find more people who you really enjoy! Some professional accounts curate their follow list to be mainly accounts they would recommend to others. This can also help with finding more perspectives on issues you care about and make sure you see that message more often on your feed.
Don’t be afraid to hit the unfollow/block/report buttons. You are not required to keep following people who create a negative space on your feed! And if they are promoting disordered content - there is a specific reporting feature for that! It will also help reduce that type of content on your feed when you report and unfollow disordered videos or trends.
Let me know what you think or if you tried any of these tips. You deserve a social media experience that supports you and makes you feel good! Do less doom scrolling and get more from your social media experience.
If you have suggestions for what I should cover in a future newsletter or have a question let me know here!
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