my 6 tried and true tips for navigating social media as a new mom 🤦♀️
“comparison is the thief of joy.” – theodore roosevelt
you are not your feed, you are also not the opposite, the anti, or the enemy of someone else’s feed. you do not need to do look, act, or post a certain way in order to be a good mom and it DOES NOT matter what any one else is doing when you are taking care of a new baby. Unless that person is helping you (everyone you know should be helping you).
It’s to remember with the “new normal” in this age of social media, but the things that are going on in the world, or social media, are no where near as important as the things you are doing to care for yourself and your baby. Then again, with all the hours we spend up in the middle of the night, nursing, feeding, reading, rocking, and so on, it’s hard not to get sucked into all the things every one is doing “better than us”. Of course they’re not, it just looks that way online. Which sucks when you’re a new mom just trying to get through the way without getting puked or crapped on, let alone eat or pee or get some sleep. It’s hard enough.
But look, you’re not alone. we all do it ** that’s how they make money** so let me just remind you again that you are not your social media feed, and other people are not theirs, and that you are amazing- and beautiful, and incredible, and doing a BOMB-ASS job of being a mom.
But you and I both know you’re still going to spend lots of time on the internet. Lots and lots of time. So let’s talk about some ways that you can safely navigate and still reap the benefits of social media (cause there are many) and not go completely insane or spend all your savings on tummy flattening tea and carseat covers, akay? K. Buckle up, here they are.
- limit social media use. if you have the new iPhone update, there’s a nice little app on there called “Screentime”. That little devil is going to watch your activity on your phone and tell you when & where you’re spending your precious time on your phone. It can be a little alarming but also really helpful. You can even set time limits on it. A great option for new moms and anyone else with neck pain from looking down at their phones all day. But seriously, give yourself a time limit on phone use(set a timer for 10-15 min when you pick it up and when it goes on, put it down), or specific times of day/night when you don’t use your phone. You know what they say, the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. put the phone down girl..that is.. after you read 2-6 of course 🙂
- out of sight out of mind. – remove your sM apps from your homescreen. hide them behind “keynotes” or something else completely irrelevant. I mean, how amany times have you opened your phone to check the timeweather and end up scorlling your feed for 5 minutes never hacing known what time it was in the first place. Stick those apps in the back (or delete them altogether! ) and see the freedom it creates in your mind and in your life.
- Curate your feed. turn your social feed into a soothing spa.
this is one of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever gotten or given. You have a choice what shows up in your social feed, so curate it… by clicking that pretty blue button called “unfollow”. You should really only follow people/pages that make you feel awesome — and even if that is constantly changing, so what? follow, unfollow, it’s your life – it doesn’t matter how a follow makes someone else feel, assess how your feed makes you feel and if the answer isn’t exhilerated and inspired, or mellowed and comforted, then girlfriend hit that unfollow button. there’s no reason to feel like crap. If you would be better off following pictures of water and leaves then follow your natural flow mama and follow your heart. I can’t express this enough, your social media is yours. Unfollow, unfriend, do your thing. life’s too short to read about Pessimistic Patty’s failed relationship for the umpteenth time or watch moms of 6 benchpress their husbands in bikinis. if that shit doesn’t light you up then girl LET. IT. GO.
- It’s called SOCIAL media. use it to communicate. find people like you, who like the things you like. slide into those DM’s and say “Hi – my kid doesn’t sleep either! let’s send each other memes at 2 am” and BOOM a beautiful friendship is born. send messages, comment, engage (in a positive way) and get social. motherhood can be isolating and social media is a brilliant opportunity to feel connected and engaged, if you use it the right way. join the #betterafterbaby community or a local community in your area. Join a group for moms who love the bachelor, I mean if you love it, there’s probably at least half a dozen other mamas who do, so go find them, and laugh a little.
- UNFOLLOW. I kind of covered this in #3 with curating your feed but I cannot stress enough how important this is. If you come across a post that makes you feel icky about yourself, UNFOLLOW. If pictures of #thatgirl from high school keep popping up and making you feel like you aren’t good enough just the amazing gorgeous way that you are then unfollow or unfriend or whatever – WHO CARES?! It’s just the internet. It’s not real life. I repeat: it’s not real life. And your mindset & sanity matter a lot more than someone’s follow count. I promise. If you decide later down the road that you’re just nosey and want to know then go look, request to follow, it happens every day. If there’s something you think will be helpful down the line, then unfollow now, and come back later. That’s the beauty of the internet, it will still be there when you get back. And on the off chance that it’s not, something very very similar will have popped up in the meantime.
- take a break. just take the weekend off.
Seriously. Just put your phone down. set it to Do Not Disturb with emergency numbers only and hide it in the medicine cabinet and live disconnected for a while. capture moments in your memory not your cloud. Do some yoga and don’t tell anyone about it. Just be you – cause you’re really amazing, and the people who matter know that, they know it … even if your Instagram is full of blurry pictures of your kids sleeping cause that’s the only time they sit still.
Social media can be an amazing tool for discovering new people, places and things. But it can also be dangerous, and stressful. Use these suggestions to help you navigate the online side of what is already a really exciting and terrifying time in a mama’s life. Facebook Communities like #BetterAfterBaby are a place where you can be yourself, connect with other moms and feel normal, in a world where everything feels new and scary. Use social media for it’s intention, socializing & fun, and you’ll have no trouble at all. And if you do find yourself caught up in the comparison game, just jump into #BetterAfterBaby and confess, all the other mamas (including myself) will be there to commiserate with you. Cause you are not alone. I repeat: you are not also. Don’t ever let social media make you think you are 👭