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Navigating A Healthy Relationship With Social Media

Written by: Reah R. Hagues, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 
Executive Contributor Reah R. Hagues

Social media usage can be both risky and beneficial. Whether it be for professional or personal use; healthy social media utilization involves structure, healthy habits, and accurate information.


Young woman using smart phone.


Social media for business


The difficult part about running a startup business is drawing a line between availability and accessibility. Availability is defined as being readily accessible. Accessibility is defined as being easily able to reach. I should be available to my clients when they need me, but only accessible to them when I need to be focusing on the business.


Family time and hours outside of your scheduled availability is not the appropriate time to be accessible. The risks of social media for business include lack of understanding, difficulty in navigation, and lack of funding for paid benefits. Lack of understanding can come from a lack of information or education on the topic(s) discussed or even how to use some programs/sites. Lack of funding does not have to prevent usage as there are plenty of free perks on almost all social media sites even at the basic, free access level! These things can lead to stress and frustration in attempting to use social media for advertisement and networking. Before utilizing a platform for business, learn about its business perks! The benefits of social media for business are advertisement, networking, information, and expansion. Again, utilize free resources on all platforms. Typically, you do not have to join to enjoy basic perks. You can advertise for free by posting often and getting increased views that put out your business information to everyone who sees it. Just be sure to post positive, relevant, and resourceful information. Networking comes generally from increased availability as well as utilizing free promotional opportunities. Posting on other pages, and interacting will also increase your visibility. These things also lead to networking and expansion through exposure!


Social media for fun


Social media usage for fun can have as many advantages and disadvantages as using it for business. Although pleasure usage can be very different from professional usage; social media can be a very fun place if used healthily! Understanding the difference between the risks and benefits, as well as how to keep them appropriate is key to having a positive experience when using social media for fun. The risks of social media for fun include emotional damage, insecurity development, and negative impact on relationships. Emotional damage can occur when people are uneducated about internet usage when communicating with others, reacting to, and/or responding to others they interact with. This can be more difficult online because you cannot hear a tone of voice, and often you do not know the person to know their tone and personality. This happens with kids/youth mainly as they are still developing emotional regulation, emotional intelligence, and situational awareness. Development of insecurity can come from reading negative opinions/comments of others online, and even comparing ourselves to others we see online as well. Relationships with others can also take a toll when your self-esteem has been lowered and you have a negative perception of others obtained through unhealthy social media interaction. The benefits of social media for fun are connecting with people in places far away, accessible information you can use to understand fun activities, and homework/project assistance.


Healthy navigation

1. Get accurate information

Whether it be for business or pleasure, always make sure you have accurate information! You can do this by only referencing reputable sites, fact-checking, and verifying the information you find on outside sources with a source you trust. Also, being informed on how to handle unhealthy or unsafe interactions can avoid negative impacts and wrong impressions of self and others.


2. Plan structured time for use

Social media usage can be structured by setting time limits on usage or setting aside a certain time(s) of day for usage.


3. Utilize resources for successful business navigation

In college, I learned how to navigate trustworthy resources and how to avoid false information. Now, as a habit, I always look for "scholarly" or "peer-reviewed" resources where applicable. For instance, for this very article to provide the most accuracy; I utilized this rule to only bring you the most accurate information possible. This just means that the research has been verified and the writings have been verified as well as accurate/truthful information.


4. Create separate social media profiles for business and personal use

For instance, for my podcast and coaching business, I have a specified page under my business name and for my personal social media, I have a separate specified page under my personal name. On my personal page, I accept connections with people I know, for my business page anyone is welcome. This helps keep lives separate and allows for a break!


5. Use it to your advantage

Intentionally plan your social media usage and interaction to be beneficial. Take precautions to make them positive and when they start to become negative, redirect or exit the situation. Scheduling social media time is important. I am guilty of being inappropriate with my social media usage time. I have mindlessly scrolled and got nothing done and I have worked on social media when I should be spending time with my family. This causes me stress I do not need because instead of focusing on the people that matter I am focusing on things that do not or that can wait until later. Social media can be stressful in terms of influence, information, and even navigation for some. Time management and appropriate use are going to be the biggest beneficial factors to successful social media use in both professional and personal use alike.


Summary

Social media use can be beneficial if done appropriately and healthily. Knowing and utilizing the right tips will make a world of difference in how your experience with social media is. Social media can be used for both business and fun! It can also have both risks and benefits as it is important to know the differences and how to navigate usage successfully. By using the FIVE steps listed, you can also successfully navigate healthy and successful social media usage for both business and pleasure.


Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube and visit my website for more info!

Reah R. Hagues Brainz Magazine
 

Reah R. Hagues, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Reah is a wife to Quintin and a mother to 5 humans and 3 pets. She is the daughter of Kim (or Ma to her), and big sister to Raven. Reah has earned multiple degrees including a Bachelor's degree in Christian studies, Master's degree in Psychology, Master's degree in Holistic Mental Health and Wellness (with emphasis on family dynamics), and a Master's level certification in Life Coaching.

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