Mental health

Consciously being on social media – is it possible?

man holding and scrolling a black smartphone

It’s a normal day. I’ve just finished lunch. I work from home in my own private practice, so I mostly eat alone at home. As if per automation, I pick up my phone and my thump just knows what to do, without much thought. Suddenly the facebook app is open. I start scrolling.

After a while, I stop and I put my phone down. I am looking around me trying to find out where I am, what time it is and what my next task is. Oh yeah, I remember now. I’m preparing for a client to come over for a session. I want to feel grounded and confident when she comes, so I start breathing deeply and connecting inwards. I realise, that I am feeling something. What is this feeling? It’s not a nice feeling. It’s a sense of hurry. A sense of “I am suppose to do something” feeling. My heart is racing slightly and my mind is on go-go-go. I realise, that I remember this feeling. I actually know it quite well. It’s the fear of missing out feeling; FOMO.

You may be familiar with that feeling. It may feel different to you.

How conscious are you?

It’s interesting that I couldn’t name it immediately, but that I needed to ask myself a few questions before it became evident, what it was. Maybe your FOMO-feeling is very clear and you know the second you are feeling it, but maybe you don’t. Or it’s a feeling you get, that stresses you out and you don’t really know what it is. Maybe this is your FOMO.

Once I recognised the feeling of FOMO, I remembered that I had just been on facebook and I had read a post where I thought “mmh, maybe I should respond to this, it may be good for me”. I decided not to, but it was lingering and asking me “did you do the right thing? What if you miss out on a really great opportunity”. Then I realised, this didn’t just happen once, but it happened with many posts. And when you’re scrolling down the endless chain in your feed, you have time to see many posts.

I am shocked at how quickly and how unconsciously this all happened. It made me wonder how often this happens without my knowledge and all the other things that happen unconsciously.

How much time do you spend not really knowing what you are doing and therefore how you are feeling?

You know, how our thoughts, create our feelings, our feelings create our mood, which creates what we say, our words create our actions which creates our future. My point is: the less conscious we are about our thoughts and feelings, the less conscious we are about our life’s outcome. And don’t we want to be in charge of our life??

I am so happy that I noticed that my FOMO part had come up, because once I noticed it, I could let it know that I am not missing out on anything and there is no need to worry. This calmed my FOMO down and with it, my body. Phew.

What do you notice in your body when you go on social media? Can you stay calm and aware? If not, how do you deal with it?

One solution is to delete social media all together. But don’t we then really miss out on things, like events or babies being born? Maybe we can live without knowing?

I don’t think deleting social media altogether is the ultimate solution. It may work for a period of time, but we have to face reality that we live in a digital world and we should learn how to deal with it, no?

Anne Louise

Living with stress and anxiety is draining and unhealthy. My coaching program helps you listen to your body’s signals and find your balance. This way you will feel great, calm and more confident.

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