During our free time, we’re more than likely to go on Instagram, Twitter, Tik Tok or any other social media platform we might have for a little bit to distract ourselves. It’s interesting to see what the world is up to and to catch up on the latest news. However, with social media, not only do you catch up with the latest news, but also other people's lives.
Although social media has its positive aspects which include communication, creating new friendships, raising awareness on certain topics and promoting small businesses, it also has its disadvantages which include how it negatively impacts our mental health.
Why is social media stressful and how does it impact our mental health?
With social media, you can post anything you want. You have the power to post what you wish to show to the world. You decide which pictures, videos, or content you wish to publish for everyone to see. You’ll most likely want to post the pictures that turned out spectacular and captured the best moment. This is exactly what everyone else does too.
When you go through Instagram or any other social media account you have, you’ll come across some people whose lives appear to look perfect all the time. By seeing this, some of us might bring themselves down because of how amazing their life looks through social media.
Please remember that anything posted on social media just focuses on the perfect moment. Content posted on social media is specifically altered for it to look perfect. Please don’t bring yourself down just because someone’s life appears to look perfect through social media. It only looks perfect because the content that was captured is only showing the best parts.
You see, that’s the thing with social media. You decide what you would like to post and more than half of the time, many people would want to post the best version of themselves for everyone to see. People only like to publish the best moments of their life, so if you find yourself being down because of social media projecting only the good side of people's life, remember that it’s just focused on the perfect moment.
Continuing on another negative aspect in social media, many people often compare themselves to others which ultimately causes them to feel insecure. Comparing yourself to another person is very negative because you’re bringing yourself down completely. By comparing yourself to another person, you tend to view their strengths and focus on your weaknesses which isn’t good at all. You shouldn’t be hard on yourself and you shouldn’t ever compare yourself to others because we’re all meant to look different. Everyone’s beautiful in their own way and we all need our imperfections because if we all looked identical to today’s beauty standards, then what would make each individual special?
Beauty in Our Imperfections
Our imperfections are what makes us perfect and simply beautiful. We shouldn’t be so hard on ourselves because of social media, especially unrealistic beauty standards. It's very upsetting how society focuses on unrealistic beauty standards because with that being displayed online, many people will want to look that way and might unfortunately hurt themselves by trying to do so. It breaks my heart knowing that many young people go through so much stress and pain, to try to achieve a certain look to fit in with society’s beauty standards. First of all, it doesn’t matter what society finds beautiful because it always changes. Our bodies can’t change whenever a new beauty standard begins to trend, therefore please remember to take care of yourself. Don’t hurt yourself because of these unrealistic beauty standards. Everyone’s body is different and beautiful. Embrace what you have and learn to love yourself!
Also, please remember we might see some people who look perfect all the time, but that’s not real. Sometimes people use filters, photoshop or do certain poses to achieve a look they're going for but that's okay! Do whatever makes you content with yourself but always remember to accept yourself, not compare yourself to others and recognize that anything posted on social media is just showing the best parts of someone.
I’m simply here to remind everyone that what you see on social media isn’t real. Everyone’s beautiful in their own way and if someone’s life appears to look perfect through social media, remember it’s just a captured moment. Please don’t bring yourself down and be hard on yourself due to social media. Everyone’s beautiful in their own way and our imperfections are what makes us perfect.
Social media can be extremely overwhelming at times but it’s important to remember that you have the power to turn off your phone and simply take a break from it. You can temporarily disable your account if you want to or you could be on social media for a certain amount of time.
You might not realize how many hours you spend on social media until you check your time on the app. Usually, this can be found in your app settings, your activity, then it should show your daily average time you spend on the app per day. Here, you can also manage your time on the app which can be beneficial for those who might want to spend less time on social media but don’t know how to.
Taking a break will help you be much more present in your day-to-day activities and it’ll also help relieve any stress you might have due to social media!
Please take care of yourself, don’t bring yourself down due to social media and beauty standards. If you ever find you’re comparing yourself to others, please stop. You’re beautiful just the way you are and our imperfections are what makes us special and one of a kind! Remember that social media only captures the best parts of our lives for a quick moment.
For more information on social media and mental health, visit the HelpGuide.Org.