If you have a smartphone, a laptop, or any other device you use to browse the internet regularly (the very fact you’re reading a blog post right now suggests that this could be part of your life), you know just how online platforms influence many parts of our lives. From the music streaming platforms we use to keep up with our favorite artists, to the creators we follow on platforms like YouTube, we each get to decide what inspires and appeals to us.
But the truth is that sometimes, the internet can be a tiresome place. From political arguments taking place over many public platforms, to internet comments that make you scratch your head, all the way up to having breaking news in our pockets 24/7 – an argument could be made that our minds were never designed to carry this much novel information.
For this reason, taking some time to set your preferences and design your online experience is akin to self-care. In this post, we’ll discuss how that can be the case, how do it it, and why that matters:
Finding Positive Sources & Voices
Go online for more than ten minutes in the social media space, and you’re sure to find some argument. Or, you’ll find someone being outspoken about an issue they believe in, which is great, but sometimes we might not be in the right headspace for such intensity. We’d instead recommend that you follow inspirational voices that care, that work hard to promote positivity and progress, and that are aware of the realities of social media discourse.
This wonderful short list of women bloggers that write about self-care can help you absorb ideas that are contributive rather than argumentative, that care about you rather than wish to make you feel ignorant. You get to design who enters your headspace, and what sources you follow to make that reality so.
Limiting Search Terms
Remember that many online platforms now allow you to “ignore” certain topics or users that you’re not interested in spending time with. It’s not ignorant to tailor who provides you your daily information. From using Twitter to mute search terms that you’re not interested in, to blocking stories from certain news websites in aggregator apps (this can help you avoid publications known to clickbait and embellish their stories), you can retain a more rational, sane, and worthwhile online atmosphere.
Managing News Exposure
The news is often hard to bear for many of us, and that’s part of the price of being an informed citizen. But there’s no need to wallow in the difficulty, especially if it begins affecting your life. Adding timers to how much you can use social media and news apps can help you focus on your own life instead. Furthermore, always consider the source you wish to learn from. For instance, on Reddit, r/upliftingnews is a great resource to subscribe to, as it helps you see everything good and wholesome taking place on this planet of ours, rather than the difficulties that attract headlines. This can help you balance out your news consumption more readily.
With this advice, you’re sure to design your online experience in a manner that improves your life, not one that takes away from it.