Social media and mental health
Ahhhh there are so many mixed views of social media and its content, we each have a different experience to it I guess, we can take inspiration or feel distress, there are so many different perspectives to envision when it comes to understanding mental health on social media, everyone is different, we can find ourselves loving our friends successes, or hating someone’s achievements, we can find ourselves bitter, shocked, hurt from comments, inspired, helped by comments, after all we do have 27 different categories of emotion and each once is experienced on social media in some way…
I did an assignment on social media and mental health so I have stolen some parts of it and de-psychologized it to an extent, I think we all do understand that social media can be good and bad for our mental health, spending more hours on it than you do in general life though is very bad for mental health, it almost steals you from reality, robs you from what is around you, have a break if you need too, I barely use Facebook now but I have to have it for my pages, I have taken more to Instagram as I love the photos people share, I am a lover of Instagram but not a lover of Facebook – I feel as though Facebook has changed its dynamics, it’s a bit bitter field now from what I have perceived, I hate watching people doing really good things to better themselves and not being successful amongst their peers, I have watched many friends pursue themselves to be roadblocked and dinted by Facebook – you could be the best musician but people won’t support you, you could cook the best food and no one will support you, eww I actually hate it, so I try not to engage here 😊
So as researched previously for my assignment I found out that in the most recent years the technological climate has elevated massively, seeing many people use some form of social media, social media platforms being a huge range of online services from Facebook to LinkedIn. According to a 2018 Pew Research Centre study, over ¾’s of participants between the ages of 18 to 49 were said to be using some form of social media. Social media plays a huge role in many people lives to date and will continue to add more users over the upcoming years as it progresses, it is a platform that is used to connect being to being online, using interactive technologies, where people share their thoughts, feelings, ideas, successes and even oppositions via virtual communities and networks. But how does social media have a role in mental health?
People are influenced and encouraged by other people, sometimes they can presume people are someone they are not by seeing things on social media that may look like someone is of a higher self, filtering apps can quickly enhance someone’s alter beauty and remove the natural aspect to the photo – due to this a person may see a person as someone they aren’t. People using social media can be succumbed to influence quickly, catching onto trends, for example if someone sees an advert that has Beyonce on, (Beyonce being viewed as a higher self, an idol, or an icon), in support of a product they may be more inclined to support this and get said product, the halo effect can also be of a stance here as people tend to listen more to those that hold beauty visually.
Social media is widespread, more so the popular social networking site Facebook, with a billion users around the world, it has now become a source of identity, you can actually use Facebook as a form of identity approval through some applications… You can see other’s identity (Possible…identity fraud), where they go too, where they live, what they think today, what they feel today, what they are doing tomorrow, who their mum is and so so with the rest of the family, providing they share this content. (Sounds just like…stalking, but the means are there). Like, everyone who uses Facebook is part of an online network of identities, and most have a profile picture that is them, some don’t, some create alias’, some troll, some go onto express pain and hatred, it is so widespread we can find ourselves facing abuse or trauma via the online world, or we can experience appraisal, it is a diverse world with endless opportunity, it is just a market for mental health for some people. Just please know when to ignore and take time away…
As we know and have probably used at some point, filters. Most also use filters within their photos to produce a higher quality image to ‘compete’ on the world web, (I do also to a degree, nothing that changes my shape though)… body image and facial image is something most are conscious of online, due to the huge celebrity endorsement of perfection, they are all portraited perfect, some actually are though (Megan Fox you droooool), but as we also know and aspire – your public profile has to represent the best version of yourself, it’s a natural trait, we all do it, you wouldn’t have a profile picture of yourself in what you believed to be your worst light, (eyeballs hanging from your head kind of photo).
So why is mental health concerned, mental health generally sources from lack of self – belief, lack of self – support, lack of confidence, feelings and thoughts of not being good enough. Social media is a feeding ground for everything ‘perfect’ and people suffering with these particular feelings will feel very far away from this reality of someone else, it can create furthermore insecurities as they feel pushed away from this version of life but longing for it (you can still reach that life you want, but you have to work hard for it).
What people need to remember when fanaticizing over another life is that this is just the part they show, everyone has their own battles and struggles to face offline that they may not want to expose, some people also have constructed areas to work with that they have spent time and/or money producing to create the best content, others may be doing it as a job, others may have unlimited resources, the possibilities are endless.
Please try not to be envious and if you ever feel like you are feeling negative feelings towards social media, have a break and delete the apps for a little while and understand that the reason why you feel like this is because you may not feel like you are meeting some of your own needs, take the time from the phone and put it towards the home, work internally and figure out why you are feeling in this way, it could be anything from feeling worthless or not getting enough sleep, whatever it is, it is a call for some self-reflection on understanding, if you need any assistance please do reach out, you can either email me or connect via SAPUK 😊
And always remember that you are and always will be enough!
All my love ✌