Social Media and Loneliness

In today’s society, we have the world at our fingertips, literally. At any moment we can go on social media and see what our favorite celebrities are doing, what our co-workers are eating and where our friends are traveling. It can be exciting and fun to take a peek into others’ lives. It can also create a sense of confusion and loneliness, particularly if we aren't living the 'exciting' lives we are seeing on social media.           

Many people have shared that when feeling down or depressed, going onto social media can be a triggering experience because tend to see in other’s what we are lacking or missing. Instead of being happy for other people, our own lack of excitement or connection gets highlighted.

In looking at other people’s photos or posts, we tend to forget that we are only seeing a momentary snapshot of their lives – a second in time. We don't know how long someone spent to get that picture or how many times he or she took it before deciding this is the "perfect" post. It's also important to recognize that just because we are seeing this happy “snapshot” of someone's life, it does not mean that his or her life is perfect. Anyone can construct a photo that makes life look exciting or enviable. That does not mean that the person in the photo is actually happy or having a better time than you.

If you feel like social media might be affecting your mood or getting you down, know that you are not alone. Perhaps unplug for a bit or deactivate an account that you frequently use in order to get a break from ”social media envy.”  To combat the feeling of isolation or loneliness, perhaps pick up the phone to call a friend in order to feel connected.