Social media ironically disconnects us
Social media improves quality of life when used wisely and in moderation. When employed carelessly or without proper judgment, they can become tools of destruction.
For example: Texting drivers put themselves, their passengers, and other motorists at danger when they try to steer their vehicles with their phones.
While we know the dangers of texting and driving; what’s often overlooked is how social media over usage can lead to depression, isolation, and even withdrawal.
Social and Mental Risks
The risks associated with an unhealthy relationship with social media use include:
- Virtual cancellation, which declares you and your opinion unworthy of public attention
- lowers self-esteem
- causes “comparison anxiety”
And leads to a false sense of intimacy, as well as a host of other negative effects, including:
- a decline in verbal and nonverbal communication skills
- a decline in in-person interaction
- increased loneliness and isolation
- a distorted sense of reality due to misinformation and censorship
- an addiction to staying connected
- and FOMO (the fear of missing out)
The detrimental influence of social media activity on mental health and wellbeing is more likely to be felt by young people. Using modern means of communication to keep in touch with friends or make new ones might be beneficial to the health of some existing friendships. However, a person’s feelings of loneliness and inferiority might be exacerbated if social media replaces face-to-face interactions.
It can also be a platform for cyberbullying and other forms of harassment. Additionally, if people rely too heavily on social media for information, they may not be getting accurate or complete information, which can lead to bad decision-making.
What can we do?
We have an ever-expanding social group and a plenty of ways to communicate in the modern era. Then why do so many people say they frequently feel alone, sad, and isolated?
Perhaps what’s most important isn’t how much or how differently we talk to other people, but rather how we talk to and reconnect with ourselves.
Talk to yourself in a sincere way. If you’re feeling lonely, it could mean you’re not giving enough attention to yourself. How long has it been since you last took the time to assess your mental health? Because of our constant concern for others, it’s easy to neglect our own needs in favor of those of others. Self-neglect is a surefire way to deepen your feelings of isolation.
Tips on reconnecting with yourself
Tip 1: Journaling
Start reconnecting with yourself by writing in a journal about your most significant losses, heartfelt desires, and highest aspirations over the next three months.
Journaling can be a useful tool for self-reconnection since it provides a confidential outlet for you to write out your innermost thoughts and feelings. Without fear of criticism, you are free to investigate your inner experiences, and you can monitor your development over time.
Tip 2: How to Tell if Your Lifestyle is to Blame for Your Feelings of Isolation
How do you determine if the way you live is contributing to your feelings of isolation?
There is no easy answer to this question. It depends on many factors, including your personality, your social environment, and your support system. However, here are some general tips:
Pay attention to your feelings. If you find yourself feeling isolated, ask yourself why.
Do you generally enjoy being around people or being alone?
Do you have close friends or family members you can rely on?
Do you feel like you have anything in common with the people around you?
Do you feel like you’re a part of your community?
Do you have hobbies or interests that you enjoy?
If you answered no to most of these questions, it’s possible that the way you’re living is contributing to your feelings of isolation. Try to make an effort to connect with people and activities that interest you.
Tip 3: Daily choices affect your health and relationships
The decisions you make on a daily basis have a profound impact on your well-being and the quality of your relationships.
For example, if we decide to spend our time and energy on activities that are not supportive of our health and wellbeing, such as smoking or eating unhealthy foods, we are likely to experience negative consequences in our health.
Similarly, if we make choices that are not respectful of our relationships, such as being dishonest or neglectful, we are likely to damage those relationships.
Therefore, it is important to be mindful of the impact our decisions can have on ourselves and others, and to make choices that are supportive of our health and happiness.
Tip 4: Selflove heals loneliness.
Healing loneliness requires developing a better relationship with yourself.
When we have a strong, healthy relationship with ourselves, loneliness is healed because we are no longer relying on others to fill that void. We are able to find contentment and satisfaction within ourselves, and we no longer feel the need to be constantly surrounded by others in order to feel complete.
Try this exercise
Find a quiet place where you can be alone and undisturbed.
Sit or lie down in a comfortable position.
Close your eyes and take several deep breaths.
Pay attention to your body and how it feels.
focus on your breath and count each inhale and exhale.
When your mind starts to wander, simply bring your focus back to your breath.
Continue this practice for as long as you like.
What are ways to reduce your time on technology?
- Use an app or website blocker
- Set time limits for usage
- Delete social media apps
- Leave your phone in another room
- Turn off notifications
- Keep your phone on silent mode
Consider a planner!
Some people find that using a physical planner helps them to stay off their screens, as it gives them a set time to work on tasks and then forces them to take a break.