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How to Protect Your Mental Health as a Digital Activist

June 6, 2024 Mahevash Shaikh

If you're a digital activist, you need to protect your mental health. In today's hyperconnected world, anyone can be an activist, and so many of us are. It's incredible to see young people actively working to improve the world we live in. However, while advocating for causes like social justice is crucial, so is making time for self-care. After all, digital activism can take a toll on your mental health just as much as traditional activism. Let's explore how you can protect your mental health as a digital activist. 

What Is Digital Activism?

According to the Humanitarian Academy for Development, 

"Digital activism is when digital tools such as the Internet, social media, email, and mobile phones are used for mobilization, political action, and to incite change. It has existed in some form or another since the 1990s and has continued to grow with the advent of Web 2.0 and the social media boom. It is likely one of the first methods of activism that comes to mind because of how quick and easy it is to reach people on a global scale."1

While there are multiple forms of digital activism, social media activism seems to be the most popular among millennials and Generation Z. #BlackLivesMatter, #MeToo, and #Covid19MentalHealth are some effective social media activism campaigns in which my friends and I participated. Currently, many of us are supporting anti-genocide social media campaigns. While doing so enables us to be proactive in the face of injustice, constant exposure to disturbing news can cause mental health issues for digital activists. 

Protecting Your Mental Health as a Digital Activist

To protect your mental health as a digital activist, be aware of how much time you spend consuming and creating content regarding causes you care about.

Then, take regular breaks from activism-related content to avoid experiencing burnout or emotional exhaustion. Consuming light-hearted content often helps me disengage from the issue at hand, thus giving me a much-needed break. When that doesn't work, I go offline and do something relaxing, like take a nap. The idea is to engage in activities that help you destress from the problems you are trying to eliminate. 

Lastly, to protect your mental health as a digital activist, connect with like-minded individuals. Whether they are friends, family, or someone you admire, staying in touch with other activists will help you build a supportive community. Also, you will always have someone to talk to when you feel lonely, cynical, or helpless in your activism journey.

Remember, protecting your mental health is a must for sustainable digital activism. Because no matter how hard you try, you cannot pour from an empty cup.

Source

  1. Moh. (2024, June 5). Digital Activism: The good, the bad, the future - HAD. HAD. https://had-int.org/digital-activism-the-good-the-bad-the-future/

APA Reference
Shaikh, M. (2024, June 6). How to Protect Your Mental Health as a Digital Activist, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 19 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/mentalhealthforthedigitalgeneration/2024/6/how-to-protect-your-mental-health-as-a-digital-activist



Author: Mahevash Shaikh

Mahevash Shaikh is a millennial blogger, author, and poet who writes about mental health, culture, and society. She lives to question convention and redefine normal. You can find her at her blog and on Instagram and Facebook.

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