I’ve been pretty busy last week and this week, preparing to take my life and health insurance licensing exam. I didn’t want to go too long without posting again, especially as I’ve had something in particular keep popping up for me lately. When that happens, I know it means that it’s a topic I need to share.
Back in the summer of 2020, I was in a bad place. My health was rapidly declining, I was in danger of losing my job, and it seemed the world was falling apart. I stumbled upon something as I was scrolling through my Facebook feed. I should have saved it, but I didn’t. The gist of it is, you have to be intentional about what content appears on your feed because it’s too easy to be caught up in needless drama and negativity.
I thought about this for a while and wondered what I could do to curate my social media experience. I began by snoozing some friends for 30 days who had been increasingly negative with their posts. I found that by the end of the 30 days, not only had I not missed anything of any import, but I was marginally happier. This small test encouraged me to make some harder decisions.
I unfollowed, unfriended, and blocked people when appropriate. It’s a thing I wasn’t brave enough to do before, because what if they found out? Well, what if? They don’t live my life. They don’t know how constant negativity affects me. They may not even realize that what they posted is negative, or it may not even seem so to anyone other than me. It could simply be that something they said was a trigger for me, even if not intended that way.
So far, nobody has confronted me about being unfriended or blocked. If they ever do, I will be direct. I am curating a positive social media experience for myself and the content of their posts is not in alignment with that goal. That doesn’t place any blame or call anyone out and it gives an opportunity for everyone to consider what they do put out there. I’m not perfect. I have to check myself sometimes, too.
Next, I joined some Facebook groups that I thought might benefit me: an INFJ group, an Enneagram 6 group, a wholesome memes group, etc. If any of the groups I joined turned out to be more negative than I had anticipated, I left the group.
Fourth, instead of scrolling past ads or recommended articles that made me sad or anxious, I started hiding them. When you do that, it typically asks why and then it starts suggesting those types of things less or not at all.
Last, I’ve started sharing and posting positive content. Some of it is what relates to my spiritual journey, sometimes I post what I know one of my siblings or friends really needs to hear, and sometimes I just feel guided to post a certain thing.
Here I am two years later and, while my life is not and never will be perfect, I am much happier. Of course, there are other contributing factors, such as my new job. However, I find that I’m a lot less stressed in my down time now than I was before this change. I’ve also noticed positive things coming out of this intentional curation. I’ve made some new friends and had opportunities that I don’t think would have come my way before.
So, why am I just talking about this now? Honestly, until the beginning of this year, I wasn’t in a place to talk about much of anything. Especially not publicly. This particular topic is for today because of what has happened in the last couple of weeks.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I had a video call with Gina a couple of weeks ago. In our approximately one-hour conversation, one of the things she said to me is that my Facebook account has become her favorite thing about Facebook. She said it gives her such joy to see my posts in a sea of food pictures and rants. I honestly thought that nobody paid much attention to what I posted and I had just been hoping that the right people would see what they needed when they needed it. I was surprised to find that it was anyone’s favorite thing. That really encouraged me.
This past week, a couple of my friends messaged me to tell me that something I had posted was exactly what they needed. Then, today, I was catching up on some of Jay Shetty’s older podcast episodes and was listening to 8 Ways to Deal With Negativity. He talked about being selective about what you consume and said that what is on your feed is feeding your mind. It was primarily focused on news, but I think it’s applicable to most everything. At the end, he specifically says to “get curated.”
I hope some of this has been helpful. It’s a small thing, when you think about it, but it makes a world of difference.