In the era of social media, influences have expanded beyond just close friends and family to the virtual acquaintances you acquire through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and so on. Previously, I talked about the role social pressure can have on your mental health. Now let’s add social media to the equation.
(Sum of everything that I mentioned before) + Social Media = STRESS!
Think about how many people watch Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and allow what people post, “like”, or even not “like” influence their mood, actions, and outlook on certain things in life.
“My picture didn’t get that many likes…why don’t people like me?”
“My friend has a great job, new clothes and a new car…I need a better job, more clothes and a new car.”
In most cases, following the paths of others or trying to keep up with the Joneses leads to added stress. Don’t get me wrong. I do some of this as well and I do not mean that it is all negative, because there are great things about the Internet and social media, but we must recognize the added social stressors that both have on our mental wellbeing.
Stress to live up to the expectations of others. Stress to imitate others. Stress with comparing our lives to a portion of another person’s life that we see on social media. We must not prioritize prestige and outward appearances over our own mental wellness and happiness.