Social media has practically consumed the attention of all human beings on planet Earth since being turned on and launched all those years ago.
Like a virus, social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram started spreading from host to host, allowing them to accelerate in growth much faster and infect millions of users in only a few years.
And it doesn’t look like they are going to slow down.
The way technology is changing, morphing and growing, it’s obvious that more and more people are going to become users.
Social media does have its advantages for society. But, it has also affected the society in a negative way which I believe has outweighed the positive advantages.
It’s up to the user to use social media to its advantage. But willingly or unwillingly social media can still have serious negative impacts on its users.
We find It hard to control the negative effects, we are powerless to stop the influence they have on our lives, we become trapped, looking at ourselves and our lives differently, unable to escape its grip.
Social media does have its advantages, but I want to focus on the disadvantages it has on our mindsets and society.
Advantages are numerous and everything is perceived to have a positive effect unless it is used negatively.
Social media is a drug, a strong drug, once it’s users have a hit it’s hard for them to not come back for more.
We can’t even go for dinner anymore and enjoy the company of who we’re with without checking if we’re getting more likes on the Instagram post we shared before we came.
I’ll go as far and say we probably went to the dinner to just take the “couple goals” or “bestie goals” photo.
The addiction that social media causes users to have is very bad, it disturbs our personal lives, it causes conflict, we become lost, losing touch with the real world and its beauty.
The addiction forces us to get involved very extensively and eventually we become cut off from society.
The addiction causes us to become slack in our time management abilities and waste a lot of individual time that could have been utilised for productive tasks and activities that would benefit our lives.
Mental Health Issues
Stemming from the addiction social media sucks us into, the side effect is the gradual decay of an individual’s mental health and wellbeing.
It’s the pain and suffering we won’t see on another’s face because it’s growing deep within them.
We use social media to connect and create friendships/ relationships with others, but it’s also a breeding ground for cyberbullying, trolls, toxic comparisons, deep-rooted insecurities, decrease in attention span, sleep deprivation, and less frequent face-to-face interactions with other human beings.
Excessive time spent scrolling through social media and the fake world it wants you to live in can cause extreme cases of anxiety and depression.
A healthy balance must be found when using social media, it’s crucial for our mental health and wellbeing.
Our happiness, our self-love, our self-esteem, our confidence is never worth losing to something that’s made up of more lies than truths.
We tell stories about ourselves which are lies about ourselves so we can develop into someone we are not.
The lies we tell ourselves make it easier to live in a complicated world.
We spend too much time trying to look perfect, then even more time taking the perfect picture to post with more time spent writing the perfect caption to share the goodness that is your life.
We love sharing the highlight reel of ourselves because we are insecure about our fears, faults, and vulnerabilities.
We believe (by no fault of our own) sharing our fears, faults and vulnerabilities is a weakness, a weakness that’s destructive to the perceived self- image we have to portray to the world to feel accepted by society.
We never post pictures of ourselves when the family pet dies, when someone we love leaves us, and when we lose that job.
We never share the bad news that always darkens our days. But it’s the dark days that make us who we are, who we really are, who we’re meant to be for the world to see.
Instead, we all manifest this “perfect” image of ourselves to portray, a character and actually try to rely on this imaginative character we have of ourselves instead of staying true to who we are.
Become vulnerable, shine bright, blind the world.
No Emotional Connection
Emotional connection is what we crave.
We need it for our survival.
Social media doesn’t give us a pure emotional connection to who we connect and interact with.
Instead, it gives us a fake connection.
We assume someone likes us because they like a picture that shows no substance to who we truly are, after all, a picture is worth a thousand words.
The quality of a conversation using social media is disgusting because you cannot sense the emotion or enthusiasm from the other person when they interact with you.
It makes your mind race away thinking, debating, wondering if they actually mean what they say.
Want to develop a long-lasting connection with someone. Put the phone down and have a face- to- face conversation
There’s no app for that.
Loss of Reputation
Brian Koslow has this quote, “Never make negative comments or spread rumours about anyone, it depreciates their reputation and yours”
Social media can easily be used as a gun loaded with bullets that can kill someone’s reputation by creating a false story about them, what they do or have done and spread those lies across social media.
And it’s not just individuals this reputation gun can be pointed at. Businesses can also suffer huge losses due to bad reputation being conveyed over social media.
Our reputation is fragile, we do our best to protect it, but it’s shattered it’s impossible to put the pieces back together again.
Cheating and Relationship Issues
We are officially in the era where infidelity is our normality and guess what, social media is to blame for all of it.
The more time we allow ourselves on social media makes it easier to escape into the lives of others and find solace in new or former romances.
Social media gives us the unlimited potential to the entire world, to anyone at any time, right at the push of a fingertip and a platform to share our truths… Or untruths
The problem is that this unlimited potential has also given people access to other people in a way that is much too easy if people want to use it for unfaithful reasons.
Before the rise of social media, infidelity simply meant that you physically cheated on your partner.
Now with social media, infidelity has gotten so much more complicated, easier and even more accessible.
We can lie about our lives, fabricate untruths, create a new persona, hide our existing life, showcase another and no one would be able to see any difference to what we portray to them.
Social media has changed what infidelity is and has allowed a gateway for people to get away with a lot more than they could have before these digital platforms rose up to power.
Social media tricks us into giving up on what’s real for the pursuit of something that isn’t.
People need to realise that.
This is The End
When using any social media platform, be aware of how interacting on the platform, what you see and what you read can affect you.
Take responsibility for your own safety and never stay on the platforms if it’s going to compromise your morals, ethics and most of all happiness!
See more social media blogs here.