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Do more living and less scrolling in 2020

Social media – the place for scrolling and stalking, filters and fakery, activism and change-making, influencing and inspiring – it cuts both ways. While it’s great for spreading news and messages of action (who isn’t familiar with the #FridaysForFuture hashtag?), it can also be a place for trolling, and negative comments which can be damaging for our self-esteem. How many of us have compared our lives to those on screen who project the image of perfection, all captured with a light enhancing Clarendon filter (you know the one!) and thousands of likes and followers? Guilty. We say it’s about time we got mindful about our mobiles. The online world can be a fantastic place – connecting us with like-minded individuals, creative projects and Earth-saving events, but let’s not forget that the real world exists, too and in some cases, it’s far better to invest more of our time there. After all, why find comfort in a follow and a like, when you can find it in your community, family and friends that are waiting for you the other side of the screen.

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About Be Kind

Hello, Happy New Year. I hope you all had a restful holiday and are ready for a great 2020. Have you made any resolutions? Perhaps you want to cut down your plastic waste, volunteer or improve your yoga practice? If you’re stuck for ideas we’ve got some positive and impactful suggestions. Asking friends, family and colleagues their intentions for the New Year, a lot of resolutions are regarding social media. “I’m deleting Facebook,” said one friend, “I spend too much time on Instagram and want to cut back,” said another. To say that our relationships with the digital world are complicated would be an understatement. For me, it’s an essential part of my job – it connects me to our readers, it introduces me to new and exciting brands and charities doing brilliant things for people and the planet, it’s where I get up to date with the news and how we share the Be Kind message. Personally, I’ve never been a social media over-user, but I’ve absolutely wasted a few Sunday afternoons scrolling aimlessly and mindlessly through Instagram, then Twitter, then Facebook, before starting the same cycle again. So it’s this passive, quite pointless, use I want to cut out. I know that deleting social media entirely wouldn’t work for me, but spending more time offline is really appealing. We caught up with the ever-inspiring Venetia and Max La Manna to discuss their Offline 48 campaign – encouraging us to spend the weekend device-free. If the idea makes you nervous, we’ve got some recommendations of how to spend your time when you’re not using your phone. Social media can be such a positive tool, but it’s important to be present and phone-free in the real world, too. Here’s to a year of less scrolling and more doing. Have a great month, Phillipa Editor