The Impact of Social Media on Mental Health: Counselling for UBCO Students

The Impact of Social Media on Mental Health: Counselling for UBCO Students

For the past 12 years, I have been working with university and college students across the United States and Canada. A large portion of my practice is counselling for university students, especially from UBC, UBCO, and Okanagan College. Plus, their insurance plans of Pacific Blue Cross and Greenshield, respectively, cover the majority of counselling with a “Registered Clinical Counsellor” whether online or in person. 

I absolutely love working with this age group! The world is at their fingertips; it is exhilarating and overwhelming all at the same time. I absolutely get it; I’ve been there and worked with this group for many years. I aim to be what I needed at their age. I love helping them develop life-long skills, manage stress, process their past and what they want their life to be like, navigate relationships, and discover their purpose. 

I believe we each are created on purpose, for a purpose, and to live on purpose. 

I love helping people, especially university students, discover this.

As an alumni of one of the largest universities and athletic departments in the world, The Ohio State University, I can appreciate the overwhelm of possibilities and high demands of this age group. After my athletic career at Ohio State, I worked on the staff there and then at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, as well as with students at Simon Fraser University and Trinity Western University. In Kelowna, I partnered with Third Space Charity to provide counselling for university and college students at the University of British Columbia Okanagan (UBCO) and Okanagan College. 

UBCO Bell Let’s Talk Day 2020: Social Media and Mental Health

I am honoured and humbled to have spoken at UBCO for Bell Let’s Talk Day 2020 with Mind of Mine Foundation. I was also involved in hosting University of British Columbia President, Dr. Santa J. Ono, to share on the importance of mental health and counselling for university students.

Social Media’s Impact on Mental Health

This is a hot topic for parents, university students, high-schoolers, adults, and people of all ages actually. As a mental health consultant for various corporations, I am often asked for suggestions on healthy limits for social media. As a mental health advisor for an international tech corporation, Mazu, I was selected for a panel to speak on this topic with the film, Screenagers. While we do need time limits for social media, that is often a secondary question. I believe the first issue to be addressed is what core belief is being reinforced. Often with scrolling through social media, we do not leave feeling better about ourselves than when we came on. This is because we are comparing else’s outside to our inside, or someone else’s highlight reel to our lowlight reel or mundane, every day. This reinforces a negative core belief of not feeling “good enough” as we compare ourselves.

Comparison is the thief of joy

-Theodore Roosevelt

Stop comparing your inside to someone else’s outside

Some take-aways

  • Check your motivation for posting something
  • Find motivational people to follow
  • Pay attention if you are leaving social media worse than when you came on
  • Time restrictions are important! Try not to mindlessly scroll, but be mindful and purposeful of what you are looking at and posting.
  • Pay attention to your self-talk and the feeling of “not enough”
  • Unfollow people who you are tempted to compete with

Thank you Mind of Mine Foundation and UBCO!

I really enjoyed speaking at their great event on Bell Let’s Talk Day 2020 for UBCO students on the impact of Social Media and Mental Health. Wow has a lot changed since then! I was very pregnant, and that was my last large speaking engagement just before COVID. 

From Mind of Mine Foundation, “We might not always be aware of how much time we spend on social media platforms, but understanding the effect social media can have on our mental health can be an important step in helping us be mindful of our social media use. ⁣⁣

A big thank you to our wonderful presenter Barb Egan at @alivecounselling for speaking at the Mind of Mine Mental Health Forum 2020 and kindly providing us with this information to share. ⁣”

#mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealthmatters #mentalwellness #mentalhealthforum #endthestigma

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