We’re going to hazard a guess you’re reading this on your phone, right? And if not, it’s most likely located a mere two cm away, just in case you need to scroll away your boredom. Before you think we’re judging you, we’re really not – because we are you. Our names our Alyss Bowen and Lotte Williams, and we’re the voices behind the new podcast, We Are Offline.
As Social Media Editors, it’s safe to say we spend most of our professional, and personal lives online. In fact, we’ve been living and breathing social from the tender age of 14. Back then, spending hours finding the perfect MySpace song to reflect our teenage mood, and now, taking reels of selfies for Instagram only to upload and delete hours later because it didn’t get enough likes. But the truth is we remember what life was like before social media and that’s how we recognised the detrimental effect it was having on our mental health. And we’re not alone, a study published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology found a distinct link between social media usage, depression and loneliness and with the average adult spending 40 or more hours online a week. It’s safe to say we’re all feeling the effects.
Enter We Are Offline, a podcast with a purpose, not to boycott social media but to encourage us all to start scrolling more mindfully. Through honest conversations with influencers and industry experts, our mission is to help anyone who is feeling the effects of digital dependancy.
But what exactly is safe scrolling, and how can we build a healthier relationship with our phones? We’ve picked up some tricks along the way that we wanted to share:
1.No pre-wee scrolling.
We get it, your phone is your alarm but stop yourself from heading to Facebook as soon as you hit snooze. In fact, Lucy Sheridan, the world’s first Comparison Coach told us, that in order to change any unhealthy habits regarding social media, you need to resist the scroll before you’ve even answered the call of nature.
2. Unfollow accounts that make you feel bad about yourself.
It may seem obvious but try to be more aware of who you’re following. If you find yourself putting your phone down after a scrolling session and feeling worse than before, it’s time to ask, ‘how many of these people actually make me feel good about myself?’ Remember, it’s your feed and ultimately you have control.
3. Don’t compare your feed to others
Beauty Influencer, Alice Thomas knows a thing or two about selfies and she gave us some pretty sage advice: If you’re not getting ‘the perfect’ shot in one, then no one else. Remind yourself next time you clock someone’s cute pic—chances are, they’ve got an entire photo reel of selfies that didn’t make the cut.
4. Take time offline
We know, this one is easier said than done but it all starts with small, realistic steps. Leave your phone at home if you go out for dinner with friends, or try not to scroll on route to work. Schedule time away from your phone like you would a gym class or a hair appointment, soon it’ll become habit.
5. Check yourself
The most crucial part of improving your relationship with social media comes from you. If you know you’re spending too much time online, recognise and monitor your habits. Do you scroll when you’re bored? Or perhaps you find yourself watching endless amounts of videos on Facebook when you’re stressed? Whatever your poison, address it.