It's been, well, it's been a year hasn't it.
Finally, at long last 2016 is over, and it's time to look forward to 2017 which we all hope is happier, healthier, and just plain better.
Luckily there is something you can actually do to help your mental health in 2017 beyond just hoping and wishing. By simply logging off Facebook for a week, you can make yourself happier.
According to paper published in published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, sociologists at the University of Copenhagen studied 1,095 Facebook users. They had half the group stop using the social network for a week and had participants fill out questionnaires at the end of the week. The study found that those that took a break from the social network had increased life satisfaction and positive emotions.
"The present study provides causal evidence that quitting Facebook leads to higher levels of both cognitive and affective well-being," author of the study Tromholt Morten wrote.
"The participants who took a one-week break from Facebook reported significantly higher levels of life satisfaction and a significantly improved emotional life."
The positive effects of quitting were felt most by heavy users, passive users, and those that tended to feel a lot of envy of the lives of their Facebook friends.
“To make things clear, if one is a heavy Facebook user, one should use Facebook less to increase one’s wellbeing," Morten writes.
“And if one tends to feel envy when on Facebook, one should avoid browsing the sections (or specific friends) on Facebook causing this envy. And if one uses Facebook passively, one should reduce this kind of behavior. Due to habits, practicalities, and potential 'forecasting errors,' it may be difficult to change one's way of using Facebook. If this is the case, one should consider quitting Facebook for good."
So, do something for your mental health to bring in the new year. Take a Facebook vacation.
We promise, pictures of your high school friend's kids and that girl you used to work with's wedding will still be there when you get back...if you come back.