Theres no denying that social media has had such an impact on mental health the more popular it gets. We spend our lives mindlessly scrolling through Instagram. Seeing perfectly polished lives and body standards we just can’t live up to. The societal pressure that is roaring in 2021 is so present, and it really makes me worry for future generations. Will they know the joy of playing outside until the sun comes down? Or will they grow up with their faces glued to digital screens?
I feel lucky that I am the generation before technology and I grew up playing outside with my parents and exploring the world. The next generations really don’t know what they’re missing out on.
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Thanks so much for having me here Mohamad, now let’s get onto the post!
SOCIAL MEDIA LEADS TO COMPARISON
A common theme from social media users is the increase of people comparing themselves to those they see online. This alone can be so damaging to someones mental health. I think we forget that what we see online are highlight reels of peoples lives. We see the good hair days, the expensive clothes and outfits because people are trying to live up to an unrealistic lifestyle. If you have low self confidence anyway, seeing the perfection we see on social media can make that insecurity even worse. We don’t see the struggles they face day to day. And I really think people should feel braver to share those bad days. So that their viewers know they aren’t perfect.
I myself have become a victim of this, which I am sure many others have too. The best remedy for it, is to be really selective of who you follow. Our brains are powerful machines and I think we often forget that what we consume ultimately becomes what we live and breathe. It’s like the saying, who you surround yourself with is a reflection of you. Who you follow on social media will impact you on the way you think and live.
Let’s do a test here. Go to your smart phone, and check what your average screen time is per day. I just checked and mine is 1 hour and 27 minutes on average per day. Which is actually really low for me. I have had times before where thats been at 7 hours per day! Whats yours?!
Overconsumption of your phone and social media can have such negative impacts on your life. I went through a patch of not being able to sleep. My brain just wouldn’t shut off. And it was because of being on my phone before going to sleep. With anything in life, social media should be consumed in moderation. Our brains were not meant to be stimulated all day everyday, from the moment we wake to the time we sleep. We need down time, to wind down and take it slow. I suggest shutting your phone off one hour before sleep, or removing it from where you are. I have done this for a few months, and my quality of sleep has been so much better.
NEGATIVE LIFE HABITS
I remember when I first got into fashion. I spent a good few hours following fashion influencers and loving all of their outfits. This quickly lead to a bit of a shopping obsession. Every time my favourite fashion influencer posted about a discount or a new product I would purchase it. I don’t know how much money I spent in that time period, but I had a new clothing parcel arrive at my house everyday.
My obsession wasn’t anything that the influencers were doing. They were doing their job and sharing things with their followers, but I took it to another level. I didn’t need new clothes everyday, yet still did it. I felt this urge to constantly need to keep up with new fashion and trends. It eventually turned unhealthy and I ended up unfollowing them all and never looking back. It’s really shocking how quickly it happened too. Before I knew it, I had so many new pieces of clothing I had no room for.
The moral of the story here is to remember who you are and that you don’t need all the latest bags, clothes or gadgets to feel like you’re ‘cool’ or worthy.
Do you think social media has a negative impact on Mental Health? What are your thoughts?
I think depending on who you are, and what kind of person you are will depend on whether you will allow social media to have an impact on you. It had one on me and I had no idea it was even happening until it was happening. Its important we create that balance between being present on social media, but not letting it consume us.