How Important Are Streaks?

If you use social media, chances are that you probably use Snapchat. The app that allows you to send goofy pictures of yourself to your friends and followers, and update everyone on the weird and wonderful things that happen in our daily lives. Snapchat also now allows us to see the location of one another, and we have the opportunity to see others’ stories on the map. With stickers, filters, and various ways to edit photos and videos, its popularity continues to grow. Scrolling through Snapchat has become part of my everyday life, and I'm sure that I’m not the only one. By using it I am able to keep up to date with my friends across America and the world. It allows an instant connection and can make the distance between friends seem smaller. It also allows users to read the magazines and blogs it offers to see what is happening with celebrities and the news.

I have been doing daily Snapchats, or streaks, to my friends for a little under two years. A quick photo of an activity, my surroundings, a story from my day or of myself allows me to keep in contact with my friends, and them with me. When talking to a friend (who I have a streak with) about the importance of streaks, she said that they allow her to feel connected with her friends who are in different parts of the country at college. The daily interaction gives a glimpse into their lives.    

But how important are streaks?

I have been doing streaks for a while now, and my highest is 540 days. The other day when my phone wasn't working, I nearly lost all my streaks and I started to feel sad. But then I asked myself, why would I be sad? It’s a number next to name, it doesn't really mean much, and plenty of people don’t use it. Over the years I have seen my streaks with different friends come and go, and each time one drops it feels as if the other person didn't commit to it or care about our daily interaction. Some of my streaks have important significance to me, it marks when a relationship with that person started and we both to get to see how long we have been talking to one another. I've also had some stop and re-start, only to stop again and re-start, making the number of days very inaccurate. For many people of our generation, social media has become a big part of our lives. The addiction to social media comes from the release of a chemical called dopamine; getting likes and followers makes us feel happy. The more we get, the more we use it and the more addicted we become.

Having streaks is a personal choice, but maybe it is time for you to think about who you have streaks with. Do you talk to them outside of Snapchat or would you want to hang out with them? Maybe you continue to have a streak with someone because you don't want to be the person to drop it. In a social media driven world it is time to make sure we are making healthy choices online. If streaks are becoming a chore to you then maybe it might be time to stop doing them. Alternatively, perhaps you like them as it gives you daily interaction and it is fun to update each other with our lives and send funny pictures of ourselves. Whether you like them or don't, either way is ok, the importance of streaks depends on how we individually view them.    

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