man staring at his phone scrolling through social media

Break the habit of doom scrolling

Social media is something many of us have a love-hate relationship with. Is it amazing that we can share information in a matter of seconds with people all over the world? Yes! Is it handy to be able to find the information you are looking for with a few clicks? Absolutely! However, one of the most detrimental effects of social media is how unfortunate it can make people feel. You have such a mixture of people posting everything from what they had for breakfast to lavish selfies during “golden hour” in a Pinterest-perfect location. I’ll admit that the urge to scroll through the seemingly unattainable aesthetic is strong. Imagine all the different ways we could have that “perfect” look, the gizmos and gadgets galore of it all, and then some! At the end of the day, this bad habit is teaching us not to appreciate our own lives. Sure, it’s fun to look and dream, but setting unrealistic goals for the sake of vanity does more harm than we realize. It’s time to break the habit of doom-scrolling.


The way you look, the home you make, the car you drive, and even your relationship status. All of these things are a result of many contributing factors. Comparing the images we see to what you have can have a negative impact on all of us. The feeling of never being satisfied, wanting more and more, it’s an endless cycle. Now, it is human nature to want things that are attractive to us. This, however, does not mean that we have to live up to a ridiculous standard as determined by TikTok, Instagram, or otherwise. It is so important to remember that many of the things we see on social media are staged to have that “It” factor, which really is just simple marketing. You want the latest and greatest, the biggest, the fanciest, and more because you are bombarded with in-your-face influencers showing you how spectacular all of these material things are.


As helpful and fun as this can be when you are in the market for new products, ideas, or otherwise, we can all easily slip into the black hole mindset. That doom scroll that makes us feel great momentarily motivates us to better ourselves, or whatever the case may be in the moment, is, in fact, a trap. The problem with this is that the willpower to stop scrolling and start doing is a difficult line to cross for many people. Those “perfect” relationships you see that always seem to have that camera-ready look and feel are exactly that. Camera-ready. This isn’t to say the influencers you see posting about their relationships are in bad marriages or otherwise, but it is very important to remember that you only see what they want you to see. The only images and clips you are getting are planned, prepared, and delivered right to your screen with the intent of making you want something. This can also give you the impression that your relationship isn’t good enough, which simply is not true! Boyfriend doesn’t want to do that new challenge with you? Who cares! This doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you; it doesn’t mean you have a monotonous relationship. Look at your own life from the inside out. Remember that you live your life for you, not to impress strangers online. Keeping this in mind will keep those intrusive thoughts away more and more. 


One of the other big concerns stemming from this endless scrolling cycle is procrastination! Not only in the literal sense right at that moment where you just can’t put your phone down, but in general, knowing that your serotonin fix is just a swipe away can keep us busy and unproductive for hours on end. It becomes a bad habit quicker than you can imagine, and the cycle is very difficult to break as, typically, many of us use this mechanism to ignore our responsibilities (don’t deny it! We have all been there!), it is easy to lounge and scroll! Just 5 more minutes, just one more product review, just a peek through this playlist. Before you know it, you have gone down the rabbit hole and have invested the last 3 hours into research on a luxury vacation spot you will never go to, the latest line of new vacuums that you don’t need, and sinking in a sea of adorable animals wearing clothes and munching on crunchy snacks ( I am guilty of all of these, and I bet you are too!) This is not to say that when you have downtime, you can’t browse through luxury bag reviews or just google some aesthetically pleasing pics of assorted kinds, but make sure to put a limit on it and stick to it! The internet isn’t going anywhere, there will always be another kitten snuggling with a Great Dane, another closet tour, etc. 


So many of these images and clips we see make us question our own lives: products, places, beauty, and so much more. The trick to keeping your sanity and not losing the appreciation for the things you do have in life is not to compare yourself to these posts. Maybe your house is a little messy right this moment, but that doesn’t mean you are a failure; it does absolutely mean that you live in your house. No house lived in is picture-perfect all the time, this is normal! Maybe, like me, you appear to be a troll who crawled out from under a bridge in the morning before you have had your coffee. This is normal! Nobody wakes up with a face full of makeup, perfect hair, and a bed that makes itself once you leave it. Not to mention, if you are wearing a full face of makeup to the gym, perhaps your actual health isn’t your main purpose for going in the first place. I am not saying glamming it up is a bad thing, but do it on your own terms, do not go to the gym just to take photos of yourself at the gym. All of the standards we try to hold ourselves to based on what we see on social media are becoming more and more of a problem. Do not forget to put the phone down and take care of yourself and your loved ones in the real world. Living in dreamland will only keep your ambitions just out of reach, this creates a false sense of hope that you will eventually be able to grasp that straw with the same continued behavior. In reality, you need to push yourself forward in order to make things happen. Never forget that no amount of editing can translate that image into the real world. You can not edit or touch up real life. Stop comparing yourself and your life to the false images being portrayed as “normal,” and remember to enjoy and appreciate what is right in front of you and real. 


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