Social media can be hard to navigate especially now that there are so many platforms available at the touch of a button. Humans haven’t had enough time to evolve to social media and the vast technological innovations we’ve made. Twenty years ago, humans spent an average of 2-4 hours on their phones and the internet and now that number has grown to 10-14 hours.

This is a massive change over a very short amount of time. This, in conjunction with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on society, has had a rather large impact on frequent users of the internet. Despite the surplus of internet websites and platforms, people are feeling more lonely and detached than ever.

If you’re struggling with these feelings and other negative feelings as a result of the echo that is social media, here are 5 things you can do instead:

Go Outside!

Depending on the lockdown rules in your state or country, you should consider going outside. It is important that you experience nature, see other human beings, and remind yourself that you are not alone in the world. You can take a walk, go on a run or just sit on your balcony and enjoy the sun and fresh air.

It is important that you go outside for at least 1 hour a day just to recharge your body. If your lockdown rules are really strict, consider opening the blinds so you can experience the sunrise and the sunset. Some people don’t experience the natural clock of the world like the sun setting and the sun rising. It is important that you do. Staying home all day can be dangerous for your mental health. You’re just like a plant, you need some sunlight too.

Find a park near you and take a walk! If you’re interested in national parks, you can find one near you on their website.

What a Documentary or Movie 

Social media tends to be full of people sharing their opinions and while some of them may be more valid than others, it is important to take a step back and learn the facts.

Instead of getting all your news from Twitter and then panicking, get your news from a credible source. Watch a documentary concerning a topic you’re passionate about instead of reading tweets or watching videos designed to trigger your emotions. And when it gets too much, watch a movie instead. Netflix has a ton of options here for this.

Read!

Reading is a great way to be entertained and educated without too much external influence. Try reading fictional books if you’re a fan of stories. It’s nice to lose yourself in a good book that won’t leave you feeling drained, tired, or hopeless. 

If you have kids, you can find helpful children’s book reviews online to help you get books you’ll want to read again and again.

Learn a New Instrument

Learning a new instrument takes focus, time, and effort. This is a great and rewarding distraction from social media. Six instruments suitable for adult beginners are the piano, the recorder, the bongo drums, the harmonica, and the guitar. These are instruments with lots of free resources online that will help you learn.

You can purchase most of these instruments from a local charity shop or thrift store. Who knows you might even find some cool vintage guitars either in-store or online. Ask your parents or a musically inclined friend, they’ll probably have vintage guitars to spare. And just like that, you’re learning how to play Vance Joy’s Riptide on a vintage guitar.

Find a Craft or Hobby

Most people don’t have hobbies due to the fast-paced motion of life. The free time we do have is often consumed by friends, family, or social media. It is important to have a hobby that you do for yourself. This takes away the need for perfection and gives you the free reign to create whatever you want. Some hobbies include drawing, crocheting, writing, painting, or even writing code.

Taking a break from social media is important. It is important to reconnect with the world around you regularly. Social media gives us the chance to meet and get to know people across the world, however, it is important to get to know ourselves first.