Invaluable lessons on navigating social media from your favourite stars
Social media is a huge part of our lives. Whether we're endlessly scrolling through the 'Gram, hurriedly checking out what's trending on Twitter or sending emoji-filled birthday wishes to our nearest and dearest on Facebook, it seems as though we're never not connected nowadays. Sounds great, right? Right! Except, is it?
While being able to share our thoughts and our photos with the world is pretty awesome, social media does come with its drawbacks. From unrealistic expectations to trolls and beyond, here are some invaluable lessons from your favourite stars on how to navigate social media with your sanity intact...
1. Don't believe everything you see
We all know the feeling: you sink what seems like hours of your day staring, gormless and sad, at an Instagram feed chockablock with magical holidays, incredible parties and unbelievable outfits. Your day pales in comparison. It feels like there are no magical holidays, incredible parties and unbelievable outfits on your horizon. 'What's wrong with me and my life?!', you ask.
Being yourself and showing who you are is more individual than being like 'hey, look at us here! look at us there!' because life is about ups and downsDanny O'Donoghue
Cue The Script with some stellar advice on how to shake those bad feels...
"To be honest, all of it is taking pictures to take pictures. It's not real life," Danny told us. "Obviously social media is massive and everybody is in to it - I'm not saying to get off your own Instagram and Twitter and everything - but you have to really take everything with a pinch of salt.
"Life is not as exotic as it seems with Photoshop. Life is not a whole sequence of holidays and parties and nights out. I was actually at the Leaning Tower of Pisa and I remember seeing, there was about 10 people all in a row, all had sad faces on them, everyone one of them, and as soon as they raised their phone their smile came on. It was like it was synonymous with 'I'm taking a selfie, I've got to smile now!'.
"It's fine to not smile, it's fine to not be happy in photographs, it's fine to just be like cool being in a place. Being yourself and showing who you are is more individual than being like 'hey, look at us here! look at us there!' because life is about ups and downs. It makes the ups even sweeter when you guy through the downs."
2. Ignore the haters
Before the days of social media, we used to associate trolls with fairy tales in children's books. Sadly we've now come to know trolls as the people on social media who spout nothing but hate. Maybe the worry that you'll in some way be trolled limits what you post and when you post, but Rita Ora is on hand to offer up some advice for ignoring those haters.
"Social media is a tricky thing because it's something that we as artists need but also... we're all connected so the pressure's really always intensified by 100,000.
"I think if you ever feel that pressure just, I know it's hard, but don't look at your phone. And I know you have options now to take comments off and things like that, so I think if that is what's bothering you then take the comments off and post what you feel and whatever you like."
3. Take time to switch off and step back
'Sometimes you need to be alone, It don't matter now, Shut the door, unplug the phone, It don't matter now…' George Ezra knows a thing or two about switching off and the desire to do so lead him to pen Don't Matter Now.
The temptation to stay up to date with world happenings is all too real but this usually comes at an emotional cost. George Ezra broke it down for us...
"It's even news alerts and breaking news and stuff. Again it's amazing that we can be in the loop and be aware of everything going on but if you hear it as soon as it's happened then the chances are that you're not hearing the full story, for starters, and secondly it's just a headline and headlines are never chilled out, are they? They're there to grab your attention. So when someone's forcing that at you it becomes a bit crazy."
So, what can we do George?
I think to actually engage in something other than screens is good to do from time to timeGeorge Ezra
"Honestly I think what really helps is to physically switch off. I think we live in the modern world and that's a great thing but... night-time rolls around and you realise you've done nothing but look at a phone screen and that's no good. So I've actually started, once 8 o'clock, half 8 [arrives] - it's getting earlier each day - once I'm kind of done, I just turn my phone off, which has helped massively.
"Now I don't sleep with it next to my bed because I found it was the last thing I saw, it was the first thing I saw when I woke up because I'd use it as my alarm... It kind of goes on and on. So yeah, I think to actually engage in something other than screens is good to do from time to time."
You heard it here first, guys: it's phones off in George's company from 8PM onwards.
Listen to The Surgery on Radio 1 at 9pm on Wednesday