Social media absolutely affects your mental health.
We live in an interesting time. We put our entire lives online for the world to see, and then get mad if people aren’t looking. Personal privacy used to be something we valued, but now we want the world to know everything there is to know about us.
We curate an online persona, designed to make everyone else jealous. And we thrive on strangers, pressing the LIKE button, to get validation.
As I am sure you already know, there is no way this is good for our mental health.
Thus, Instagram is planning to do away with ‘LIKES’. I have to say, I support it, even though I suspect it has more to do with Instagram not being able to capitalize on LIKES, than the effect they may have on the mental health of the populace.
Social comparison is a relatively new concept, which came with social media. We used to only compare ourselves to the people in our immediate circles. Now, we compare ourselves to everyone in the world. As you can imagine, this creates a skewed reality.
We are comparing ourselves to people who are ‘faking’ their entire lives on social media. Instead of focusing on what we have, we are focusing on what we don’t. Our sense of worth is suffering, for the dumbest reason.
Influencers, who make their money with LIKES are up in arms. However, the fact that this change will be more beneficial for mental health is worth it, in my book.
Social media has been shown to create anxiety and depression. LIKES have been banned in Australia, Canada, Brazil, and Japan, and those countries are all still standing.
So I think this is a step in the right direction. Because the truth is, we should use social media to share our progress, motivate our friends, and inspire strangers.
Whether or not they like it, LOL.