Holiday Mental Health Tip: Anxiety is fueled by social media in one of three ways. One of those is the “Other people are better than me” negative thinking trap.
Social media encourages us to compare ourselves to the “ideal” pictures we see. We don’t see the “messy” parts of our friends or acquaintances lives. You know, the argument that ensued on the entire drive to the photographers but everyone managed to pull it together when they were told to “say cheese”. Or what about the couple out doing all the holiday stuff and insuring they capture every moment – but what you don’t see is the wife crying herself to sleep at night worried it may be their last Christmas together. And there’s the mom who schedules the appointment with the photographer knowing they can’t afford it, and stressing over how it will get paid for. But she HAS to do it – everyone else is and she can’t be left behind. No, we don’t see all of that “mess” – we just see that one second in time that’s captured when the shutter opens and closes and we compare our entire being to that one moment in time that’s manufactured to look “picture perfect”. And then, they get so many ‘s and comments that we only sink deeper into the “poor me” pit.
Here’s your reminder to NOT let yourself fall victim to that negative thinking trap this Holiday Season. Now that you are aware, be mindful. If you find yourself starting to feel anxious or depressed remember YOU HAVE THE POWER to stop the scrolling. I encourage/challenge you to limit your social media intake to less than 30 minutes per day for a week and see you how feel at the end of that week! And if you really want to feel empowered – fast it for an entire day or two! You’ll realize a couple of things… (1) how much control you have let it have over you and (2) the empowerment you feel when YOU CHOOSE to not participate in things that make you feel the trap of comparison.
Comparison is a thief – this holiday season don’t let it steal your joy!