We shouldn’t live our lives through social media

Alia Bennett / Contributing Writer

Technology has come a long way. We don’t have to leave our house to shop, run errands or watch movies. Everything is now within our grasp and that includes millions of people. Time and space are no longer as big of an issue because social media is everywhere. We live in a society where there are very little limits, if any, on communicating with one another.

However, it seems that with the rise of social media, a lot people are becoming obsessed with all the wrong things.

First and foremost, social media is great. We get to network, market ourselves or our brands and even meet new people all while keeping in touch with loved ones. But as with anything, there are always cons. One could say that social media has also lead to more materialism and narcissism within today’s society.

People are so wrapped up in the attention they seek or get from these networks that their dependence on social media seems to mirror addictive behaviors. It’s almost as if we can no longer just live life, but we must tell and show everybody just how we are living it.

According to a study conducted by Harvard University, divulging information about one’s self activates certain pleasure centers in our brain. This makes it a bit more understandable why social media is so enticing amongst youth.

Nonetheless, a growing problem still persists and not enough people are paying attention to it. We have a generation that was raised on technology so this is our “norm.” However, it is currently being used in ways that are not facilitating to an active and enjoyable life by some.

For example, if a post doesn’t get the type of attention you think it deserves, you may start to overthink and second guess yourself. You may also begin to use your posts as a way to validate yourself or keep up with the “cool” or “rich” socialites.  

Conflicting feelings about one’s self or life can arise. Users see others post their lavish things or their frequent trips around the world and instantly become jealous. You might even feel like you are not successful since you are not living the same life that they are displaying.

At the same time, the average person doesn’t think of all the things you don’t see. They fail to realize that people are more than what they post. Life is more than what we post.

Thanksgiving just passed and I can only imagine how many of us were glued to our phones; constantly checking our feed instead of enjoying the time spent with our families. A lot of us can’t even eat a meal these days without stopping and posting. After all that is done, the food probably has lost its appeal. Life’s precious moments are the same.

Although taking and posting pictures is not the problem, doing it for the wrong reason is. Some of our best moments are uncaptured or unseen by most and that doesn’t necessarily nullify them or take them away forever. When you can’t go a day without posting things on Instagram, Twitter or countless other apps, you might have a problem.

Life is meant to be lived and many of us are too busy trying to prove something to people that don’t know us or honestly don’t care. It is easy to get wrapped up in things that are here one day and gone the next. For this reason, use social networks for fun not as way to convey something you aren’t.

[image from Flickr]

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