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8 Benefits of Being Present in a Social Media World

Social Media has become a significant part of our lives with the average person spending at least an hour and forty minutes a day on their favorite platform and apps, but how much time is too much time?   While Social Media has it’s benefits; such as the viral Ice Bucket Challenge in 2014 which raised over 220 million for ALS, users are beginning to recognize the downsides, such as a loss of presence in everyday life.

In this blog we guide you through the benefits of being more mindful when approaching social media to keep your well-being in check.

1. Practice Being Present 

One of the most important elements of well being is the practice of being present.  With social media available at our fingertips on our mobile devices, it creates an escape from everyday experiences.  People also feel the constant need to stay updated and share what they are doing, so a moment that could have been a bonding experience or a tranquil space is turned into shareable content.  Particularly with large life events such as births and weddings, people feel the need to share the moments as they happen versus enjoying the experience of the special day.  As humans we crave connection and building memories, and in order to do this successfully we must be fully present in our lives.  Being more mindful of staying present and leaving the phone at home when engaging with people and activities will help to enhance your sense of presence. 

2.   Improve Mood and Anxiety

Extended social media usage is linked to higher levels of anxiety and depression.  In a University of Pittsburgh survey 1,787 American adults were asked how much time they spent on social media and that was compared to their rates of feeling depressed and anxious.  The study concluded that the more exposure to social media the higher rates of depression and anxiety.  When scrolling through a social media feed, users are showcasing their best selves and the highlight reel.  This can have an impact on individuals mental health because the normal range of human emotions aren’t shared.  Through the social media lens it seems that life is perfect and it compounds the isolating feelings of depression/anxiety.  Taking a step back throughout your day will inherently make you more presence in your life and boost your mood and also prevent you from falling into these negative emotional states.     

3.  Build Self Esteem

Perhaps one of the largest pitfalls of social media is the conscious and subconscious effect it has on our self esteem.  Women and men, and sadly children, get caught up in the comparison game.  The photos posted are often filtered to the person’s ideal of their perfect self.  This causes a ripple effect of friends and strangers comparing themselves to an ideal that is unattainable.  Many also compare others’ life milestones to their own, and begin to feel a lack of self worth about where they are in their journey.  Taking a more mindful approach to social media can reconnect you with what is real, and build up your self esteem, while you aren’t busy comparing yourself to others.  

4. Leave The Past Behind

Social media is nostalgic, users can connect with friends from childhood and it can be a nice way to stay updated on acquaintances’ lives.  However, if you are going through a hard break up or divorce social media can be a form of self sabotage.  The urge to constantly check in on what the other is doing can be crippling and prevent you from moving on in your life.  Taking a step back and being mindful that you are ruminating  will help you in your healing process.  

5.  Better Sleep

Social Media steals our sleep and we don’t recognize it.  A study conducted on 1788 young American adults between 18–32 concluded that those who reported “a median of 61 minutes of [social media] use per day” also said “medium or high levels of sleep disturbance.”

Scientists explained that browsing social media right before falling asleep further aggravates the situation. Not only does it “displace sleep” by keeping you awake for longer, but it also “Promote[s] emotional, cognitive, and/or physiological arousal.” Taking a social media break even an hour before bedtime will help sleep disturbances and allow you to feel your best during the day. 

6. Build Real Life Connections 

Social media has replaced real life socialization at times and in large usage.  Humans thrive on connection, particularly those with emotional well-being challenges or substance use disorder.  When isolating on extended social media usage, it is impossible to gain the quality face to face connection that all of us crave (and can especially appreciate after 2020.)  Stepping away from social media for times during the day will cause your attention to be diverted to important people in your life, and allows you to build those important connections to enhance your spirit. 

7. Conquer the Fear of Missing Out “FOMO”

Perhaps “Fomo” has always existed, however it is undeniable that social media has magnified this feeling immensely.  Social media users feel that if they don’t constantly check their feeds that they will miss something important.  Some may also see friends posting about events that they had decided not to attend, and feel anxiety over the decision when their feed is flooded with photos from the affair.  Social media mindfulness will give you space to understand that important updates will find their way to you, you do not need to constantly hit that refresh button.

8.  You Will Gain More Time For Yourself 

Approaching social media more mindfully will allow you to reconnect to the things that you love, or try new hobbies. Instead of investing this precious time in scrolling, which in large quantities is shown to raise levels of anxiety/depression, you can invest this into your self care and reap the benefits.

In a world run by social media it is completely normal to engage and even healthy at certain levels.  When practicing more mindful social media usage the benefits become clear if the usage has exceeded it’s positive influence in your life.  Use these strategies to keep track of when you have moments of presence. These are big wins! 

About Herren Wellness

When you come here, you are immediately connected with a thriving community of people at all stages of their recovery journey. We introduce healthy habits and routines centered around emotional, physical, and spiritual wellness that provide a solid foundation for rediscovering your interests, experiencing joy in sobriety, and building structure and routine.

We provide several alumni support communities, including a weekly recovery support group, monthly alumni meeting, and online alumni community you can access anytime. Your connection to Herren Wellness doesn’t end when your stay ends; we are there for you throughout your recovery journey.

If you, or a loved one, are looking for help, please call us at (844) 443-7736, email us at, or fill out a contact form. You are not alone.