Anxiety and Social Media: Is it Time to Quit?
More and more people are ditching social media, or at least taking long breaks from it. One reason is due to increased anxiety; the feeling that we need to be always checking, responding to notifications, and not left out of what's happening right now.
Anxiety steals joy. It can lead to depression, and it can put us on edge, constantly. If you enjoy this snippet, click the button at the bottom to read the whole article. We highly recommend it if for nothing else to be aware of the impact social media has on our lives, even our souls.
It then permeates through the rest of my day too: I check Twitter on my commute and read any notifications that light up my phone throughout the day.
Social media has become second nature to us millennials but is the fact we are never truly switched off doing us harm?
The first hurdle is popularity. For example, the worry when you share a carefully filtered photo on Instagram and wait for the likes to – hopefully – rack up leading your brain to somehow equate your popularity and value IRL with how many people enjoyed that photo of your eggs benedict at the weekend.
Similarly, how many followers you have on Twitter does not mean you have that many actual friends. Yet for many on social media the lines can be blurry as followers can be seen as a validation for how funny, witty or interesting you are.
Social media makes us think we are just having conversations with friends but the amount of time we spend oogling wealthy, beautiful and seemingly perfect strangers on Instagram and comparing our lives and appearances with theirs only fuels existing insecurities. As does, that Snapchat story of all your friends at the party you couldn’t attend, which to be honest was probably rubbish apart from that moment they all collectively posed for a selfie.
The rationale that nobody’s life is perfect and that what they share on social media is carefully curated and edited often goes out the window during these times.
The never-ending stream of tweets, status updates, pictures and news can feel overwhelming and like you are constantly missing something if you do not read all of it. So is it healthy to take the odd break every now and again?