Social media has taken over the world by a storm. These media channels have outdone our traditional media a while ago. Social media can be defined as interactive technologies that allow the creation or sharing/exchange of information, ideas, career interests, and other forms of expression via virtual communities and networks. It has literally brought the world to our computer/mobile screens. We are swimming in an ocean of ideas, thoughts, proposals and innovation. From thought provoking e-books on spirituality to Pinterest pins on ‘how to decorate your home on a budget’, we have access to such varied information on every topic imaginable. Nowadays social media has become the ultimate tool for the minorities and the oppressed. The #MeToo movement is an example of how the world was taken up in a frenzy of social media sharing. The pros of social media are undeniable but the cons are concerning.
Self doubt and inferiority complex have become our best friends in this age of social media. The constant barrage of perfectly filtered photos that appear on Instagram are bound to knock many people’s self-esteem, while obsessively checking your Twitter feed just before bed could be contributing towards poor quality of sleep. Stalking aesthetically perfect Instagram photos or staying up to date with people’s relationship status on Facebook could do little to assuage your feelings of self-doubt. “When we derive a sense of worth based on how we are doing relative to others, we place our happiness in a variable that is completely beyond our control,” Dr Tim Bono, author of When Likes Aren’t Enough explained in Healthista.Many of us are guilty of spending far too much time trying to take the perfect photo of a visual marvel. “If we direct all of our attention towards capturing the best shots for our social media followers to admire, less will be available to enjoy other aspects of the experience in real time,” said Dr Bono. Dr. Bono continues to explain how social media is affecting our sleep cycle, our mental health, our attention span, etc. The list goes on. It is solely upto an individual to set boundaries and make the best possible use of the platforms at our disposal. It’s important to realise that the world of social media is a phantasm and one should not immerse oneself into it.
You don’t necessarily have to quit social media but if you feel like it’s beginning to bog you down, why not consider allocating social media-free time slots during your daily routine? The slight change could do you a whole lot of good.