Divorcing with Social Media for Healthier Relationships, and a Healthier You

Our addictive feeds of fitness models, exotic travel, and photo-perfect moments don’t often match with our comparatively humdrum and badly lit lives. The discontent caused by that disconnect is enough that a growing body of research suggests social media is contributing to mental-health problems such as anxiety, depression, sleep deprivation, and body-image issues in young people, who are the heaviest users of social media. – Marc Bain

HABITS OF YOUTH: Children, teens and young adults are more likely to use social media, and more likely to spend hours of their day posting and scrolling through feeds.

This daily use of social media exposes young minds to constant comparison with unreal expectations, said Dr. Matt Stanley, a psychiatrist for Avera Behavioral Health.

“What our children are exposed to at an earlier age has changed dramatically over the last decade and a half,” Stanley said.

Social media – for good or for bad? Not bad per se but, naahh. I can live life more without it.

Believe me, I have long been struggling to accomplish this messy work.  The struggle is very real. For months. Messy, because when things go out of control, the digital world can really make a total mess out of your life. 😨 As to my confessions I’ve repeatedly installed and uninstalled Instagram and Messenger, because the willpower is not overpowering the habit. I reckon that it makes no sense staying up late, eyes though tired, very glued to the cellphone screen.  Not only does it make no sense but also, the habit is detrimental in an unusual, unseen, but gradually felt manner. But since I am writing this now, I hope this would make my stubborn self totally realize, that addiction to social media really does disarrange your system.  In more straight words, it’ll make you insane.  

Just a few takes on the struggle.

Boulevard of Vanity

The wide accessibility of the internet opens a wider avenue for people to show off.  You can bust the once coveted SLR cameras for high quality camera smartphones and easily upload what you have been up to, what you are eating and who you are with on your recent getaway, for unconcerned people to see.   This may not annoy as the feed is scrolled, but it surely will effect in the subconscience.  You turn off the screen of your phone with a changed mind, tending to worldly things until you are doing the bad customs yourself which you used to abhor.  And worse than this is the selfie mania. What made these bad impressions dawn upon me are the repeated selfies of a person I follow, which was really annoying and basically turned me off.  Soon did I assess myself, am I pissed because I wanted to do the same thing?  Maybe that’s it. I am jealous. But I thought I wouldn’t do it either, because as much as it made me annoyed, so would other people be when their feed would be flooded by my ultra filtered beauty selfies 😊😂 so good. It’s not envy after all. True beauty will not strive to exhibit itself. Insecurities will 😉

Invading Privacy made Fashionable

The dish of the day for most social environments is the life of other people.  The disposition to be a stalker of your boyfriend’s ex, of someone you envy so much, of your popular colleague, is made highly possible without these persons knowing you are keeping a good eye on them.  Tell you, it is a life destroyer to be a constant dweller of what other people show on the internet. It really is a fake life you are seeing; being able to behold only the outward demeanor and not the character of the person.  You will lose your self respect by the habit, as you make yourself unproductive and covetous.  

Higher risks of lowering self esteem, heightening depression

Quoting from articles:

…What dragged Instagram down was its ability to fuel loneliness, depression and anxiety.

Another side-effect reported by Instagram users was the platform’s reinforcement of negative body image.

“We forget that relational aggression comes from insecurity and feeling awful about yourself, and wanting to put other people down so you feel better.”

Peer acceptance is a big thing for adolescents, and many of them care about their image as much as a politician running for office, and to them it can feel as serious. Add to that the fact that kids today are getting actual polling data on how much people like them or their appearance via things like “likes.” It’s enough to turn anyone’s head. Who wouldn’t want to make herself look cooler if she can? So kids can spend hours pruning their online identities, trying to project an idealized image. Teenage girls sort through hundreds of photos, agonizing over which ones to post online. Boys compete for attention by trying to out-gross one other, pushing the envelope as much as they can in the already disinhibited atmosphere online. Kids gang up on each other.

Adolescents have always been doing this, but with the advent of social media they are faced with more opportunities—and more traps—than ever before. When kids scroll through their feeds and see how great everyone seems, it only adds to the pressure. We’re used to worrying about the impractical ideals that photoshopped magazine models give to our kids, but what happens with the kid next door is photoshopped, too? Even more confusing, what about when your own profile doesn’t really represent the person that you feel like you are on the inside?

“Adolescence and the early twenties in particular are the years in which you are acutely aware of the contrasts between who you appear to be and who you think you are,” says Dr. Wick. “It’s similar to the ‘imposter syndrome’ in psychology. As you get older and acquire more mastery, you begin to realize that you actually are good at some things, and then you feel that gap hopefully narrow. But imagine having your deepest darkest fear be that you aren’t as good as you look, and then imagine needing to look that good all the time! It’s exhausting.”

As Dr. Steiner-Adair explains, “Self-esteem comes from consolidating who you are.” The more identities you have, and the more time you spend pretending to be someone you aren’t, the harder it’s going to be to feel good about yourself.

-Rachel Ehmke

But more importantly…

Time is wasted if you will not control your urges to be socially updated.  Life is not meant for show, for flattery of other people so that in turn they would do the same.  Character is marred.  Selfishness is the prime principle of the enemy of righteousness, and social media will set that on fire. If you want to be really happy, selflessness is the key.  To cure ourselves of insecurities, or the urges of thinking we are better off than others, and the depression that is sure to follow when we do not get the approbation that we want, let us be busy minding other people’s welfare.  Thus our minds will not experience degeneration, as this present generation is experiencing.

Quoting again from Rachel Ehmke (big thanks for enlightening me personally)

When kids learn to feel good about what they can do instead of how they look and what they own, they’re happier and better prepared for success in real life.


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