VOS: 4+1 Tips For a Balanced Using of Instagram

4+1 Tips For a Balanced Using of Instagram

Emotional wellbeing
Productivity & Growth

June 2023

4+1 Tips For a Balanced Using of Instagram

Social media plays a significant role in our daily lives, serving various purposes such as entertainment, communication with friends, and work-related activities. However, it's important to recognize the potential negative impact, as research suggests a link between Instagram use and anxiety, depression, and declining mental well-being. To ensure a healthy relationship with Instagram, here are some strategies you can employ:

1. Monitor Your Usage:

Take a moment to review the amount of time you spent on your phone yesterday, which can be found in your Instagram settings under “Time spent.” Set a reasonable time limit there. For example, if you primarily use it for leisure, consider setting a daily limit of one hour. Your phone will notify you when you've reached that limit, helping you adhere to your decision.

2. Follow Inspiring Content:

Evaluate the type of content you frequently encounter on Instagram. Does it inspire, inform, or entertain you positively? To make the most of your Instagram experience, ensure that you only follow accounts that inspire you or provide valuable information. Unfollow accounts that trigger feelings of envy or anger. Remember, the choice of who and what you follow is entirely in your hands.

3. Intentional App Usage:

Before opening Instagram, determine your purpose. Are you interested in staying updated on your friends' activities, seeking information or inspiration on a specific topic, or sharing your own achievements? By keeping this intention in mind when you open the app, you can resist getting sidetracked by advertisements and irrelevant posts that might distract you from your original goal.

4. Take Regular Breaks:

Instagram can create a sense of "FOMO" (fear of missing out), leading to excessive usage. Combat this by scheduling regular breaks from the platform. Choose a day of the week that works best for you to disconnect from Instagram and dedicate that time to personal interactions with friends or engaging in activities that bring you joy. Consider activities like meditation, self-journaling, or pursuing your favorite hobbies.

+ NO GO - The Rule of 3 No's

To regain control over your Instagram usage, incorporate designated "no-go times." For instance, when you wake up in the morning and feel the urge to browse through new posts and stories, consciously tell yourself, "not now." Instead, take a moment to look out the window or stretch, allowing your body to start the day in a healthier manner. Apply this practice three times a day to ensure you spend more conscious and purposeful time on Instagram, avoiding mindless scrolling.

Lastly, keep in mind that Instagram primarily showcases people's best moments and experiences. Try to view content on Instagram as a source of inspiration, instead of comparing yourself to others. Remember that everyone experiences highs and lows at different times, and the seemingly perfect moments shared on Instagram can be exaggerated or selective. Don't become entangled in the illusion of extraordinary lives. Take pride in your own accomplishments and cherish the small joys that have brought happiness to your life.

Check out the resources we used to learn more:

  • Reinecke, L., Gilbert, A., & Eden, A. (2022). Self-regulation as a key boundary condition in the relationship between social media use and well-being. Current Opinion in Psychology, 45, 101296.
  • Balancing time on Instagram - Advice for young people | Internet Matters. (2020, February 6). Internet Matters. https://www.internetmatters.org/resources/wellbeing-and-safety-on-instagram-advice-for-teens/pressure-to-be-perfect-toolkit-for-teens-balancing-your-time/

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