Social media, the latest revolution in human history, is more about addiction than social interaction and sharing. It is something that compels us to 'follow' people rather than building up social relations voluntarily. And it is this feeling of compulsion, which makes us addictive and that eventually takes a toll on our mental health.
It is very important hence to get aware and educate ourselves and others about the ill-effects that social media can have on our mental health, so that we do not become mentally ill.
It is very important that amidst the constant bombardment of information, not all of which is necessary for one individual, we make a calm mind and think about the reasons that give us a herd mentality.
Check here for the effects that social media has on our health:
1. Social Media Is Too Addictive: Yes, we love social media and are even obsessed about it because it indirectly keeps on pampering our self-loving sense. "Likes" on a post or "retweets" of a link boosts our feeling of self-importance and we gradually get into a cycle of posting-liking-commenting-liking-commenting. May be, the Facebook authorities feel a "Dislike" button could turn people away, as too much formal use of such option would hurt many people's ego.
2. We Start Comparing Ourselves With Others Too Often: Which is an unhealthy tendency. Every person on earth has a different journey to make, but after seeing others' profiles - the photos and self-boasting posts - we tend to feel that everybody else is in a better position than us. But trust us, the other side always seems to be greener.
This constant comparison creates a feeling of negativity and can seriously harm one's self-confidence, which is a basic requirement for success. Avoid others' stories, unless they are substantial enough to boost you. Taking selfies or buying a swanky new car are not success stories.
3. We Become Restless: We tend to lose our mental peace and feel anxious if we do not or cannot use our social media accounts for even a single day. This is the worse part of addiction. Even the drug-users feel the same. Are you also going the same way?
4. The FOMO Factor: We avoid "to avoid" social media because it grows in us a fear of missing out (FOMO). You want to remain updated on how others' foreign trips are going or what's the latest model one has added to his/her stable of cars. Constantly peeping into others' lifestyle can give you an inferiority complex, which is completely unnecessary and detrimental for your mental health.
5. We Get Distracted Too Often: The distraction caused by social media notifications can harm our ability to concentrate on a certain work. As a natural instinct, we feel more curious about others' lives (exceptions are certainly there) than to finish off a work in hand. This rattles our concentration and adversely affects our productivity.
6. Social Evils: Sometimes, we make a mistake of equating the virtual world of social media with our real life. Making friends and acquaintances through social media and even taking relationships seriously - sometimes even to the extent of love affair and marriage as fast as requesting a friend's request can be dangerous.
Cyberbullying has become a common problem in this age of social media and it leaves many as a serious victim - both of trauma and fatal physical injury.
7. Social Anxiety: The more we get addicted to social media, the more we get disconnected from the natural world. And after a point of time, the lack of a dialogue and one-person engagement gives us a feeling of loneliness. The worst part is that too much addiction also damages our natural ability to communicate with people and real-world surroundings.
So, when we tend to look for an alternative engagement to break free from the killing silence of the virtual world, you do not get a worthy company. It creates a serious challenge for human beings as a social animal and pushes him/her towards depression.
8. Bad Food Habits: Spending hours on social media can not only make your mental health suffer, but also physical one. Eating and drinking while engaging with social media can make you nothing less than a couch potato. It affects your nutrition intake.
9. Anger And Tension: Social media can get too personal at times (in fact more than at times) and issues that are debatable and polarising can cause confrontation among people - sometimes even terminating relationships. Arguments and counter-arguments on social media make us angry and tense and affect our nervous system.
10. Can Make Us Judgemental: Social media erupts every time there is an event. Instead of objectivity, opinions become the central point on social media, since it's an informal platform. People pass their judgements without thinking in depth and we also get influenced by that and pass our own verdicts. It is not always necessary to take a stand on social media and feel irritated, which can affect us mentally.
If you can overcome these odds by being a little choosy about social media, then it is undoubtedly a big blessing. It empowers us in a way forefathers did not have and make our voices heard and felt more. So use social media wisely and make it a means to help yourself and not harm you.