When we talk about the negative effects of social media what comes to your mind? Social media has impacted negatively on the lives of many people and has led many astray.
A lot of people have lost their lives just because of social media. And, what do you think is the cause of it.
This wasn’t the sole aim of why social media was set up but a lot of people have tend to misuse it and fall victims of so many things which have made a lot of people to abstain from some social media platforms.
Although, social media have some positive effects on our lives and society, but the way people tend to use it now makes it difficult for people to see the positive effects of social media on our lives.
Negative Effects of Social Media
Before social media, bullying was something that was only possible to do face-to-face. However, now people can bully others online anonymously or not.
Today everyone knows what cyberbullying is, and most of us have seen what it can do to a person.
While social media makes it easier to meet new people and make friends, it also enables cruel people to tear into others with little effort.
Perpetrators of bullying can use the anonymity that social networks provide to gain people’s trust and then terrorize them in front of their peers.
For instance, they might create a fake profile and act friendly to a classmate, then later betray and embarrass them online.
These online attacks often leave deep mental scars and even drive people to suicide in some cases. And as it turns out, cyberbullying doesn’t just affect kids.
Adults can become victims of online abuse, too. Since screens hide our faces, you can end up being a jerk on social media and other websites without even realizing it.
2. Unhealthy Sleep Patterns
On top of increasing the incidents of anxiety and depression, spending too much time on social media can lead to poor sleep. Numerous studies have shown that increased use of social media has a negative effect on your sleep quality.
If you feel like your sleep patterns have become irregular and have led to a drop in productivity, try to cut down on the amount of time you browse social media.
This is especially the case when using your phone in bed at night. It’s all too easy to tell yourself that you’ll spend five minutes checking your Facebook notifications, only to realize an hour later that you’ve been mindlessly scrolling through Twitter content you don’t even care about. Don’t let social media algorithms steal your valuable sleep.
3. Unrealistic Expectations
As most people probably know by now, social media forms unrealistic expectations of life and friendships in our minds.
Most social media sites have a severe lack of online authenticity. People use Snapchat to share their exciting adventures, post about how much they love their significant other on Facebook and load up their Instagram page with heavily staged photos.
But in reality, you have no way of knowing whether this is all a farce. While it looks great on the surface, that person could be in massive debt, on bad terms with their significant other and just desperate for Instagram likes as a form of validation.
One simple way out of this mess is for everyone to quit lying on social media. But in the era of Instagram influencers and YouTubers who earn millions from being inauthentic, that isn’t going to happen anytime soon.
4. FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)
Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) is a phenomenon that was born around the same time as the rise of social media. Unsurprisingly, it’s one of the most widespread negative effects of social media on society.
FOMO is just what it sounds like: a form of anxiety that you get when you’re scared of missing out on a positive experience that someone else is having.
For example, you might constantly check your messages to see if anyone has invited you out, or focus on your Instagram feed all day to make sure that nobody is doing something cool without you.
This fear receives constant fuel from what you see on social media. With increased social network use, there’s a better chance for you to see that someone is having more fun than you are right now. And that’s exactly what causes FOMO.
5. Negative Body Image
Speaking of Instagram celebrities, if you look at popular Instagram accounts, you’ll find unbelievably beautiful people wearing expensive clothes on their perfectly shaped bodies.
Today, body image is an issue for everyone. Of course, seeing so many people who are supposedly perfect (according to society’s standards) on a daily basis makes you conscious about how different you look from those pictures. And not everyone comes to healthy conclusions in this situation.
It’s really important to remember that everybody is human. No one wakes up every day looking like a supermodel, and while many people have gone to great lengths to train their bodies, that’s not the case for everyone who looks fit. Many people, in search of social media fame, have definitely taken unhealthy routes to appear more attractive.
Surround yourself with people who love you for who you are, and you won’t have to stress about Instagram’s beauty.
6. Depression and Anxiety
Do you spend several hours per day browsing through social media? Spending too long on social networking sites could be adversely affecting your mood. In fact, chronic users are more likely to report poor mental health, including symptoms of anxiety and depression.
It doesn’t take much thinking to figure out why. Social media lets you see the carefully selected best parts of everyone else’s lives, which you compare to the negatives in your own life. Comparing yourself to other people is a sure path to anxiety, and social media has only made this easier to do.
So how do you use social media without causing yourself psychological distress? If you turn to the same research (and common sense), the recommended amount of time you should spend on social networks is around half an hour per day. As with many other potential ills in life, it’s all about moderation.