Posted: 24 January 2020

Refresh your feed: ideas for making your social media a more positive place

It's easy to feel overwhelmed by the online world. For some people, a digital detox is the answer, and this is something our mental health practitioners recommend if you’re experiencing stress. But if that’s not possible, or you don’t want to fully disconnect from social media, then here are our recommendations for some positive social media accounts to follow.

Accounts to get you active

Being active has loads of benefits, and is recommended by our mental health practitioners if you have low mood or depression. So why not fill your feed with ideas for new sports to play or yoga poses to try?

While more and more fitness-focused Instagram influencers are popping up, these accounts can be a bit intimidating and don’t always promote a positive body image. Fortunately, the BBC Get Inspired Facebook page is a completely different, more optimistic space.

As well as providing top tips for getting into different activities, they also share inspiring stories which might just be the motivation to get moving that you need - from someone running their first marathon to a teenager starting up a karate club.

Educational Instagram accounts

A great way to work on your well-being is taking the time to learn new things, and it can even help you manage stress.

There are lots of Instagram accounts filled with fascinating facts to suit everyone’s interests. If you’re a culture vulture, check out the British Museum’s account for bitesized history lessons combined with beautiful photos of the museum’s artefacts. More scientifically minded? You might like @science. And who doesn’t love stunning photos of animals and landscapes, especially when they come with insightful captions, so the National Geographic account is also worth a follow.

The best laid out planners

Another top tip our practitioners give if you have low mood is keeping to a routine, and it's something most of us can benefit from. But how do you go about creating a routine and sticking to it?

One fun way to develop a routine while also flexing your creativity is bullet journaling. To try out this planning method, all you need is a notebook, some pens and maybe some inspiration, which is where the BujoInspire Instagram account comes in. This curated collection of beautiful bullet journal layouts and illustrations is a goldmine of ideas for how to personalise your journal.

Get creative

Even if journaling isn’t your thing, there are plenty of social media accounts to fuel your creativity in other ways. NaNoWriMo may have started as National Novel Writing Month, but all year round their Facebook page is a hub for writing prompts, tips and tools.

Practitioners in our mental health services often encourage the young people they work with to express themselves through poetry. If poetry interests you, @thetypewriterdaily is a great Instagram account to follow.

But if you’re more of an artist than a wordsmith, you might like the @howto_artist Instagram account. As well as providing useful tips to help you perfect your portraits and improve your shading, they post memes about the artistic process which might cheer you up on days when you’re just not ‘in the zone’.

Cute animals!

Getting active, learning new things and being creative are all amazing things for our well-being. But sometimes, a cute animal gif is all you need to brighten your day! Fortunately, there are plenty of puppies and kittens to follow – while it’d be impossible for us to choose favourites, following @dougthepug, @white_coffee_cat and @juniperfoxx will cover most of your animal bases.

We hope you found this round-up useful, but it’s important to remember that social media can have serious consequences. If you're struggling with a mental health issue, explore our hub of mental health advice for tips on coping with stresssuicidal thoughtsself-harm and more.

Read our mental health advice

If you are concerned about yourself or someone else and you do not think that they can keep themselves safe, you must try to stay calm, stay with them and seek immediate help and advice.

There are national helplines: Childline (0800 1111) Samaritans (116 123) that are open 24/7 for 365 days a year. You can also call 999 or go to A&E at any time.

By Lauren Cain
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