Society

How Is Social Media Affecting You?

I have 900-something friends on Facebook. That’s a small number compared to most of my friends who have at least 1,000. Many of my friends are almost capped out at 5,000 friends and they’re not the slightest bit of famous.

At the beginning of January, I went to one of the biggest events to start 2019. It was the Winter Takeover hosted by my fraternity, Kappa Alpha Psi, and sororities Alpha Kappa Alpha and Delta Sigma Theta. I got a new camera for Christmas so I was excited to take some photos of the event. As me and my wife were heading out to the event ,I let her convince me to not bring my camera. We took an Uber to the event, so if I wasn’t allowed to bring my camera, then where would I put it? I argued that I could just leave it in the coat closet that was supervised, but my wife asked do I really want to leave an expensive camera laying around if I can’t take photos? So I ended up leaving the camera in the hotel room.

Come to find out, I was able to take photos at the event and that made me super mad at my wife because I let her convince me not to bring it and the main reason why I wanted to go to the event was to take awesome photos. The event had a lot of people and live entertainment; it was an event that would help build my portfolio.

But, I also can’t ignore that I thought about how I wouldn’t be able to share the photos on social media. Like, look at me having photos of all these people. I must know all these people. I must have an awesome social life. It’s a problem that I got more mad at the thought of not having any photos to share on social media.

It’s a problem that people today cannot live in the moment. That if we don’t take a photo, then the awesome moment didn’t even happen. With camera phones and apps and live features on apps, every awesome moment in our lives can be shared instantly. We are addicted to showing people that our lives is just as great as theirs. All you see on social media is people’s greatest moments, so we feel inadequate until we have a great moment to share.

I’m not always happy in my marriage, but I always post photos of me and my wife smiling. Usually those photos were taken during a happy moment, but that doesn’t mean that we went the rest of the day without an argument. To social media we’re a perfectly happy couple. In reality we go through growing pains like every other marriage, and we’re still in the newly wed phase of learning each other.

We’re addicted to friends and likes. People hesitate to follow someone on Instagram because of fear that they won’t follow back. And, if they don’t follow back then that can simply mean that they don’t know us, or it can mean what our minds always tell us that we’re not cool enough. We’re not important enough to follow because we have a greater following than followers ratio.

There have been plenty of times when I unfollowed someone because they didn’t follow me back. Or, if I see they have thousands of followers and are following a couple of hundred people, then the chances of them following me back are slim to none, so I don’t bother following them at all.

I read an article on Forbes called Social Media (Again) Shown To Be Worse For Girls’ Heath Than Boys’. I agree. 90% of women I see on Instagram are photos of them at their very best. Their hair done, makeup done, and are usually wearing an outfit that shows their curves.

I follow a page on IG called Pyramids and Diamonds. It’s an IG page featuring college women of Delta Sigma Theta and college men of Kappa Alpha Psi. The majority of women posted on that page are baddies (highly attractive women, usually wearing clothes that shows off their figure), women that will cause a man to want to visit their page to see more photos and follow them, knowing that 9 out of 10 times they not going to follow back, or even respond to your polite comments. It’s like you having nothing but college women following this page and the only thing worth posting are the finest looking ones.

I have a friend in college who traveled all over the world. Taking pictures in Asia, Egypt, and so on. They even managed to be student debt free and saved $30,000 while working abroad. That made me feel sometype of way because I’m $30,000 in student loan debt, I got like a little over $1,000 in my savings, and instead of being bold and traveling the world I played it safe and joined the military. See how social media causes us to compare ourselves. I have a friend who published a book. I want to be a writer too so although I wanted to be happy for them I also felt envious. When I graduated college I felt anxiety because many friends were talking about their post college plans while I had no idea what I wanted to do.

As you see, social media is the worst place to be when life isn’t going according to plan. When you’re going through big challenges in life it is best to stay off social media because seeing other people’s lives go seemingly well while yours feels like you keep taking steps backward can cause you to feel worse. Then again, there have been times when I was going through a tough situation and I seen other people share their struggles on social media too and it made me feel like I’m not alone.

At the end of the day you have to ask yourself why you’re on social media and what you want to get out of it. Monitor how much time you spend on apps and how often you check them. I’ve found myself wasting valuable time just scrolling through social media feeds.

 

 

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