Jessica Stebbins, MS, Registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern
Discovery Institute, P.A. Rockledge, FL
Serving Brevard County
In another blog entry I discussed ways in which facebook can lead to depression in some individuals. I would now like to give some pointers on how you can help protect yourself from the negative effects of social networking.
- Think about your friend list.
As I stated previously, many facebook users have more facebook “friends” than they have real life acquaintances. Although it may make you feel good that you have 600 friends, having all these friends may increase your risk of comparing yourself to others, not to mention may make security of your personal information more of a problem. I suggest you go through your friend list and delete those people that do not make you feel good about yourself or that you tend to compare yourself to.
- Edit your options for your newsfeed
Sometimes there are those people that we cannot delete from our friends list for various reasons even though we do not have a healthy relationship with them. In these cases, you can go down to the bottom of your newsfeed to “edit options” and hide posts from them so you are not bombarded with their posts and pictures.
- Take everything in stride
Remember that people typically only post the positive things in their life, making their life seem more glamorous, prosperous, and enchanted than your own. Keep in mind that there is a lot that they aren’t saying!
- Be happy for your friends
Happy feelings breed happy feelings. Change your thoughts about that friend that just got a high profile job in a positive way and the Law of Attraction states that you may bring more of that in your own life as well.
- Focus on the positives in your life.
Positive psychology says that the more thankful we are for the things we have in our life, the happier we are.
- Don’t rely on facebook to communicate
When you want to make plans, talk about something personal, or just need a friend to lean on, make a phone call or talk to them in person. You may not get through to them right away, but the results will be much more satisfying!
- Limit the amount of time you spend on facebook
Turn the computer or at least facebook off every once in a while. Use that time to be present in whatever activity you are engaged in, spending time with loved ones, cooking, or even just watching TV. By not multi-tasking you will be able to enjoy each activity more fully.
These are just a few suggestions, please feel free to post any of your own suggestions as comments.