If you are like me, watching too much news can wreak havoc on your mood. I begin to think our world is nothing but an evil, horrible, negative, cesspool of a place to live. I lose hope in humanity quickly as I hear story after story of war, murder, robbery, rape, kidnapping, and abuse. I become cynical, despondent, and downright depressed. Therefore, I limit my exposure to the news.
I noticed that my local news stations post the more horrific stories on their Facebook news feed than they broadcast on television, so I stopped following their pages. This has helped my mental health tremendously since I check in on Facebook multiple times throughout the day versus watching a televised newscast only once per day.
5 Types of Media That Have a Positive Affect on My Mental Health
1. Blogs that offer hope
I enjoy reading mental health blogs written by those who have struggled or are struggling, and are trying to get better. It is uplifting to read stories of perseverance, effort, compassion, and faith.
There are many bloggers out there who write only of their destructive ways; who are stuck in their illnesses and show no signs or interest in wanting to get better. They do not seem to have the insight or awareness into the things that they can change, and that is ok. They aren’t there yet, and I am not judging them for that. However, their negativity and anger is something I have to steer clear of for my own mental well-being, just as I have to with people in real life as well.
Sometimes when I am feeling down or just bored I will search positive keywords on Google and browse through the images that come up. I often add the word “quotes” to my keyword and then many photos of positive affirmations and sayings appear. For example, this one is from searching the words “friendship quotes”:
And of course, you can find just regular photos of anything you can think of that makes you happy, including all the puppy and kitten pictures you could want!
I use Pinterest because it is a great way to save all of those images you find. That way you can come back to them again and again to boost your spirits whenever you need to. Plus, on Pinterest you have the advantage of having a million other people’s search results at your finger tips on the same topic you are interested in.
4. YouTube Music and Photo Videos
Listening to your favorite music on any media device can help improve your mood. You can find many songs on YouTube as well. What I like to use YouTube for is to find non-mainstream type music that helps my mood, such as relaxation or meditative music. Music that I wouldn’t necessarily buy, but that I might want to listen to every once in a while to help calm my nerves on a particularly stressful day.
I also like searching for photo-music slide shows. They can be very soothing. If you would enjoy photos of wooded areas, this one is nice.
If you search the hashtag “#affirmation” on Twitter, you can read all kinds of positive messages that will help lift your mood. I know it helps me stay in a good frame of mind.
Do you know of any other ways to use media to improve your mental health? Please share them in the comments below.