The Dark Side of Social Media

We live in a society today that is ruled by technology. We have access to so much more than we did ten years ago. There are a number of ways for us to stay connected these days thanks to social media. Social media can be both a blessing and a curse. There are times when social media can get toxic and bad for your mental health.

 

Living with a mental illness, I’ve found at times that social media has been toxic for myself. When I find myself feeling negative towards social media or I start being overly self critical; I know it’s time for me to take a breather from social media. While there are many positives for having social media, there are also some negative aspects to it.

 

Social media has been a blessing for staying connected with family and friends across the globe. It’s great being able to stay connected with those in your life who you don’t get to see as often as you would like. I love scrolling my feed seeing pictures of my family and friends enjoying their lives. Social media has been an incredible tool for staying connected with those in your life.

 

There are situations where social media can get to be toxic. We have the Internet at our disposal and it can be so easy to get lost in that void of being stuck behind a computer or phone all day long.

 

One way that social media can be toxic is cyber bulling. Cyber bullying has become more popular in a negative way. Unfortunately, it’s become more common for individuals to go through cyber bullying. Cyber bullying has made it easier for those bullies to target more people since they aren’t face to face and are doing it from a computer or phone.

 

I was cyber bullied during my years in high school. Experiencing it first hand, I know how hurtful it can be. It caused my depression to worsen and it dropped my confidence levels. It’s heartbreaking to see others go through that because I know how hard it can be facing a situation like that.

 

Another way social media can be toxic is comparing ourselves to others we see on social media. Majority of people on social media only share the “highlights” of their life leaving out the behind the scenes and not so pretty moments. I’ve gotten caught up in the comparison game numerous times especially on Instagram. I will catch myself comparing my body to another girls, wondering why my stomach can’t be flat like hers.

 

I’ve now learned that the comparison game gets you nowhere. The comparison game is only toxic and harmful to your mental health. It’s when I remind myself that what that person shares on social media is just a tiny part of their life. We don’t know their entire story or what their current life situation is. We are all uniquely and individually made so no two people are the same.

 

When you find yourself getting caught up in those negative thoughts or find yourself feeling negative towards social media; give yourself a break. It can be so refreshing to take a breather and focus on the other areas of your life. Spend a little extra time giving yourself love and attention that you deserve.

8 Replies to “The Dark Side of Social Media”

  1. Thank you for sharing your post. As someone who is struggling with depression, I have been limiting my time on social media. Last year around this time, I had to break away from the platforms to focus on my well being. Having went through bouts of panick attacks and dealing with folks who were not kind on the Internet, I had to gather my courage slowly but surely to appear back in the surface. Unfortunately I had folks who unfriended me during my absence and wouldn’t understand what I’ve went through. On the plus side, I’m grateful for my family who remained patient.

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    1. You’re welcome! It’s always good to take breaks from it and I’m glad you were able to! I’m sorry that you had lost friends through it, but I’m glad you have your family for support. I know how hard it can be and I’m always here if you need to talk!

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  2. I quit using social media for reasons other than bullying and self criticism but I can say that ever since getting rid of social media it seems like I have so much more time on my hands, it’s crazy to think about all the time that I would spend scrolling through newfeeds and status updates. great read, thanks for writing…

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  3. Oh I so wish I could quit social media. I’m terrible for comparing myself to others, it really gets me down but sometimes I find it inspires me or encourages me to strive for more. If I could though I think I’d get rid of it, the negative aspects outweigh the good IMO. Unfortunately, as a traveler, social media is pretty imperative to keep in contact with people! I suppose I should be thankful for that at least, and can always start giving myself some little breaks from it 🙂

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    1. I feel ya there cause I use social media a lot for my business and I get sidetracked at times. I’m glad you’ve found ways it can inspire and encourage you!

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  4. Thank you for the brilliant and much needed reminder that the comparison game will always bring more harm than good. Looking forward to reading more of your posts in the time to come 🙂

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