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Five tips for mindful scrolling

Last Modified: April 25, 2024

Healthy Mind

Woman looking at phone

Social media makes staying connected and informed easier than ever. We rely on it to check on our friends and family, get up to speed on the latest news, unwind and share anecdotes throughout the day. While having this wealth of information is incredibly convenient, it can also be disruptive to your day or lead to unintended habits. In this post, we share five tips for maintaining a positive relationship with social media and news consumption.

Tip No. 1 – Set your intentions

Before diving in, define your goal. Looking to stay up to date on events in your community or current news? Limit your usage to that specific purpose and log off once you’ve gathered the information you need. Alternatively, subscribe to your favorite organizations’ digital newsletter for top headlines or upcoming events directly in your inbox. 

Tip No. 2 – Monitor your emotional response

Pay attention to how social media and news consumption affects your mood. Do the updates on your feed bring you joy or do they leave you feeling down? Recognizing these emotional triggers allows you to make changes to how you use it. Consider scaling back or unfollowing accounts that consistently evoke negative emotions, even if it’s coming from your friends and family. You can still be informed without absorbing every piece of information that crosses your screen.

Tip No. 3 – Avoid social comparison

While it’s great to see and celebrate the successes of others, keep in mind social media is only a glimpse into the lives of its users. It’s less common for someone to share their daily challenges or setbacks. As you come across those picture-perfect highlights, remember to appreciate your hard work and achievements as well.

Tip No. 4 – Follow what feels good

Sometimes the news can be heavy. Strike a healthy balance by focusing on content that brings value to your life. In addition to political updates or natural disaster headlines, many major news outlets also produce human-interest stories from around the world to boost your mood. Find and follow profiles with a healthy mix.

Tip No. 5 – Reserve time to disconnect

While social media serves as a great platform for fostering community and accessing information, it’s also important to recognize when it’s time to take a break. Track the time you spend using social media or reading news. For most digital devices, this can be viewed in your settings under “screen time” or you can track it manually. If you don’t like how those minutes add up, think about how you’d rather use that time. Read a book, get outside, call a loved one or start a new hobby. No matter what you choose, make sure it’s something that feels gratifying and worth your time.

Final thoughts

By consuming social media and news content with mindfulness and intentionality, you can enjoy its benefits without falling prey to its potential drawbacks.

If you or a loved one are struggling with overusing social media, Parkview has resources available to help. Parkview Behavioral Health Institute offers counseling and services for those who may be struggling with technology and social media use. You can learn more about these services by visiting the website here or calling 260-471-9440. Our Center for Healthy Living also offers programs and services to help you become more mindful and improve your well-being.

Additional reading

Want to learn more about the impact of digital and social media on our health? Check out the following posts from the Parkview Dashboard.

Vital research into phone habits and the impact on mental health

How much technology is too much?

Motivation to power down for a better night’s sleep

Five interesting points about smartphones

Tools to help parents deal with children and electronics

Our teens, their screens and mental health

Using technology to address mental health






Copyrighted material adapted with permission from Healthwise, Incorporated. This information does not replace the advice of a doctor.

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