Social Media Is Unhealthy For People
The internet has changed the way the world works. Every aspect of the human existence has its supporting structures in the virtual worlds. In all of this, social media has become the most pervasive. There are a multitude of companies that aim to keep us connected to each other at all times and sharing our feelings. It seems like a good idea on the surface but this essay aims to look at some of the very unhealthy aspects of this feature of modern life.
- The Need to be Perfect
- Bad Comparisons
- Lost Concept of Privacy
- Misunderstanding of Intimacy
While in theory our profiles are supposed to represent who we are to the virtual world, all to often they show who we want to be or even worse, who we want the virtual world to think we are. It is not uncommon for young people to spend hours trying to stage the perfect ‘selfie’ so that it looks candid and natural. They go to places to be seen, photographed and tagged rather than to actually have fun. All of the best aspects of their lives are cataloged and the worst ones not.
Because so many people are trying to appear happier, richer and better adjusted than they really are on social media, it is easy for those who look at their friends profiles regularly to develop feelings of inferiority. They may think that ‘everyone else’ is having fun and happy when in reality ‘everyone else’ faces similar feelings but few own up to them.
It has become commonplace to reveal intimate details and photos without a thought to where they will turn up in the future. Jobs have been lost like this, relationships have been ruined and crimes have been solved.
This may be the worst consequence of all. People become accustomed to having hundreds of ‘friends’ on their social media networks but rarely interact with the majority of them. They develop many shallow relationships but have very few deep friendships. This is extremely detrimental psychologically. Without people who we feel that we can be ourselves around, we never truly get a chance to stop pretending to be the people we show on our profiles.
There are many ways that social media has changed our lives for the better. It has never been easier to share knowledge or contact people across long distances. Subsequent generations will wonder, however, at our choice of pastimes.
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