Instead of bashing TikTok, let’s embrace its mental health benefits

francesca signed ed

TikTok has taken social media by storm with its trendy 15 to 30-second dances, leading every social media user to have at least seen or attempted a dance from TikTok. But the app isn’t always received favourably; some people claim it’s a waste of time.

Some tend to be reluctant to download the app for fear of being ‘sucked in’ to the endless feed or because they believe it’s simply unproductive. But learning TikTok dances can help you increase your mental health and perform a little better in your classes—something that should be more widely acknowledged.

Now halfway through the remote semester, students are both mentally and physically burnt out. As mental health rates decline, it’s difficult finding new and effective ways to take breaks and be active.

Dancing is well-known for its health benefits. Not only is it a form of active movement—but it also results in your body producing a vast amount of endorphins. Besides making you feel happy, it also reduces cortisol, allowing the body to feel stress-free. It also enhances the cognitive functions, as dancing boosts brain activity, allowing you to enhance creativity, express emotion, and improve your memory and confidence.

Setting aside approximately 10 minutes a day to learn a TikTok dance is a feasible way to take a short break from schoolwork, thereby keeping our productivity levels going so we can stay motivated for the tasks at hand.

Similar to taking a dance class, TikTok also allows you to be present at the moment. The app acts as a breather, taking away the stress and anxieties of your day. Whether you’re worrying about grades or your next assignment, this form of movement transports you out of the confines of your homeschooling workspace.

The best part of TikTok is that anyone can use it, and it encourages people to step out of their comfort zones and try something new. This can be by dancing for fun, or by learning a new, quick dance every so often.

Dance is all about community. On TikTok, dancing promotes social interaction, as you can join a family member or housemate to learn a 15-second dance together. The ability to bond and spend time with others takes away the physical and mental isolation of online school.

Rather than looking down on TikTok dances as pointless and time-consuming, we must recognize that learning TikTok dances is a viable option for improving mental health.

This isn’t to say that you have to download the app and learn to dance right away, but instead that you should look at TikTok as a new outlet that can potentially to boost your wellbeing.

Francesca is a third-year Film and Media student and The Journal’s Assistant Videos Editor.

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