How does social media affect mental health? Depending on how you use social media, it can be beneficial or harmful to your mental health.
Platforms are becoming more intrusive
Since social media is becoming more common, people are looking for more ways to connect with others and engage in online activities. For example, you may be online to play games like the World of Warcraft or join Facebook groups dedicated to discussing your favorite hobby. Although you can enjoy these platforms, they often interfere if they handle your life too much. In addition, some social media outlets can make it difficult for users to remain anonymous and therefore open any problem that is bothering them.
We’re already in a constant state of comparison
How often do you check your phone, just to be bombed on the updates of friends and family members? What if they are traveling in remote areas, or are enjoying their new relationship with the person you want to stop liking posts about them? Or getting the new job/house/car you want very bad? We are already in a permanent comparison state.
There’s an illusion of perfection
When we scroll through our social media feeds, there is an illusion of perfection that makes us feel inadequate and insecure about ourselves. The way to counter that is to accept and acknowledge your imperfections. We’re all human, so stop pretending to be something you’re not; we want to see your warts and all. This not only makes you more and more relevant, but it also helps to accept others who are. It can be tough, especially for teens and young adults who typically deal with a lot of peer pressure; but go ahead and embrace #RealLifeUnfiltered by posting more about your flaws than your successes. Doing so will inspire others and help normalize self-acceptance among users.
Social pressure leads to conformity
People are incredibly impressionable, especially to those they know personally. When you feel pressure to conform to what your friends are doing, it can lead to negative behaviors and self-esteem issues. Feeling like you’re a part of something is great, but never let it get in the way of your mental health. If you find yourself feeling bad after spending time on social media, it might be time to take a break.
We need to know what our friends are doing at all times
We’re not really sure how, but we need to know what our friends are doing at all times. That’s it, that’s our weird mental health requirement for being online. Anything less and we feel a pang of loneliness and existential dread. There are numerous other reasons that cause social media to be bad for our mental health – so if you want to maintain your mental health, here are some steps you can take to stop using your social media.
Our relationships are becoming more superficial
There is a difference between a real friendship and an internet friend. We can talk to each other all day long, but when it comes down to it – we are usually alone. Many people are becoming accustomed to staying in front of their computer and phone screens rather than talking to someone and talking face to face. The media has played a major role in making the relationship more level, as well as in the desire for things that cannot be realistic.