I don’t know about you, but I have conditioned myself in checking social media multiple times a day. Hi, I’m from generation Y, but some like to call me a millennial. I can feel the judgment from all of the parents about to read this post, so I’m going to make a disclaimer: I am aware of my social media habit and I am aware it’s a bad one. Phew, now that I have the parents off of my back, let me talk to my fellow girlfriends in their 20’s and below 🙂
Okay ladies, know that Pinterest account you have? It seems pretty harmless right? Not quite. Pinterest says, “Come here, let me show you expensive things that you need, and pictures from magazines so that I can pressure you into thinking that these are the things that make you successful/pretty/popular…etc.” Now please do not read me wrong. I will probably never quit my Pinterest addiction until the next new thing comes along; however, I think it’s so important to take everything you’re seeing with a grain of salt. I don’t even want to hear the “but I only use Pinterest to re-pin pretty bible verse pictures” excuse. I see your future wedding board girlfriend ;).
Facebook: the online book of faces that you have seen before but haven’t talked to in years, minus your college roommate and lovely family; where everyone posts pictures of their perfect food, perfect relationships, and daring adventures. Facebook is a cover up. Behind those faces are people just like us: hurting and wanting affection… (they didn’t create that like button for nothing). I find that my mental state becomes fragile when I scroll through my newsfeed here. As I try to tell myself over and over how everyone’s lives are not as perfect as they seem, I stumble upon a political/religious/celebrity outburst as if it’s the end of the world and then I just go from depressed to angry, and it’s not a good cycle to get into. Long story short, use Facebook for what you need. For example, my employer has a page where people can cover other peoples’ shifts, and I have a group message I like to keep up with now and then, but other than that, I personally have had to avoid the actual newsfeed as much as possible. It’s up to your personal discretion as to whether or not your brain chemicals can handle such things. 🙂
Twitter: 160 character outbursts of opinions and nothingness used to either praise or tear down companies, celebrities, and everyone else. Sure, okay, there’s the praising people part: e.g. “hey @taylorswift13 that concert was amazeballs last night!” But then there’s also “hey @taylorswift13 you can’t sing.” Twitter is good for keeping up with news, but bad for when you’re feeling emotional. Again, it’s up to you how you would like to portion your brain chemicals.
Instagram: pictures used for appraisal and popularity. I deleted this app off of my phone a while ago. My feed was constantly…well…nothing. I got tired of looking at the same 5 girls’ faces, the same 5 throw back Thursday posts (aka #tbt), the alcoholism, the new boyfriends, etc. There is no better way to waste your time than by “double tapping” someone’s picture and approving of their immaturity. I know this one is a bit harsh, but I hope you’ll realize it’s a harsh truth. I get it, Instagram is the thing for high schoolers, but once I hit college, all it became was the parties I was missing out on, the ugly face I had compared to other girls, and the horrifying concept of being single.
Snapchat, Yik Yak, Tinder: I’m just going to leave these right here: viewer discretion advised.
Viewing these sites is not a bad thing overall, but for those of us who have suffered/are suffering from depression, these mental states we go through while doing something so innocent as scrolling on our phones can greatly affect our mood and most often, not in a good way. I hope this post gave you something to think about critically, and no matter what you decide to do with your social media, just always consider the side affects. Our illnesses are not physical, they’re mental. God Bless!