There is a good side to social media that is not often discussed. The following are general principles that I follow in order to avoid the bad side of social media while using it to improve my life, along with some examples at the end.
Only subscribe to quality content that you will consistently consume. It should add to your life in a positive way.
Define when and where you will allow yourself to view news feeds and recommendations. Viewing these should be a conscious decision and only for a limited period of time.
While the first two principles will significantly improve your social media habits, it reduces your chances of discovering new content. The third principle allows you to discover new content in a mindful way without letting it control your life. This is where social media can improve your life - through discovering new interests.
I only view the home page and recommendations on my phone, which I also limit the time that I spend on. When I come across content that I find interesting, I add it to a playlist to watch later. This is how I take advantage of YouTube’s powerful recommendations algorithm without letting it control me. I also utilize the “not interested” button to influence my algorithm.
I only follow accounts that post high quality content. I use Twitter as a social media aggregator to see content from a variety of sources. It is also a great source of concise but useful information.
With music, I have no problem letting Spotify recommend new music to me that I might like. Music never has a negative impact on my life.