instagram – @jessrigg_
hello & welcome to my blog! today i’m going to be chatting about social media. i personally think that social media can be a great thing. it can give you inspo, help you keep in touch with far flung friends and family as well as facilitating fundraising for good causes.
however there are also lots of negatives. i recently did a survey of 250 people in which 37% of people selected social media as a factor that affects their mental health. i also did a poll on instagram and 64% of people said that they didn’t portray an accurate view of themselves on social media. this contributes to the biggest issue that i have with social media, the lack of transparency and the role of influencers. with #ads and gifted products being undisclosed and people presenting their lives in an untruthful way – this creates issues for the audience as it affects the way they perceive themselves and their own lives – even to go as far as making their followers feel inferior.
to some extent, i think we are all guilty of this. we present the version of our lives that we want people to see, our instagram is never going to be truly representative – but then again, do we have the responsibility to tell the truth that someone with hundreds of thousands of followers has?
the best things about social media are the ‘mute’ and ‘block’ button. for me, controlling how i consume social media is the best way to not allow it to affect my mental health. if i don’t feel inspired, moved or a little bit more positive after seeing a post on social media, then i’ll unfollow or mute the account. as a general rule, supermodels make me feel negative about myself so i don’t follow them, it’s pretty easy. i also try to care less about what my instagram looks like – i used to obsess over each post but i now if i like it, and it conveys what i want to say to my friends/followers then i’ll post it. however i’m not fully there yet – after i’ve posted a picture of myself i can’t think about it otherwise i’ll feel really self conscious and then delete it after a few minutes. you may experience this too, and thats okay – but if you see a picture of bella hadid and immediately want to delete every picture of you and try detox tea then maybe it’s time to unfollow/block. (also this is a pretty extreme example, just feeling the tiniest bit rubbish about yourself is enough to warrant muting). i was really happy when i saw that 77% of the people who answered my poll said they used these facilities – yay for self policing!
another issue with social media is it’s addictive qualities. i did a poll on instagram and 73% of those who answered said they felt addicted to social media. maybe you want to know what your friends are doing, maybe you feel validated by likes & follows or maybe you’re just bored or procrastinating doing something way more important. try to have a little social media detox and see how it makes you feel? does it affect you at all? do you get anxious? are you more productive? this will help you consider how you can use social media to get the most out of it you can, without it draining you. you can also set a notification that lets you know when you’ve spent x amount of time on instagram, i have it set for 30minutes and when it goes off i try to stay off the internet from then on – i plan to slowly reduce the amount of time i spend on the app, until i no longer feel like instagram is the place to go when i’m bored.
overall, i think that if you use social media responsibly and are aware of it’s affect on your wellbeing then it’s a great place to share your life, thoughts and feelings. if this isn’t the case, then i would suggest having a cleanse and mute/unfollow/block any people who make you feel less than you are and re-evaluate why you’re posting on social media. is it for likes? (52% of people polled said they felt validated by likes, comments & follows) memories? to show your friends what you’re up to? to prove that you’re having a better time than your ex? think about your motivation and then assess your usage and how it affects your brain. try to fill your feed with happiness and positivity!
please let me know your thoughts on this- you can let me know on instagram (@jessrigg_) or in the comments below.
bye for now!
ps. the blue in the header is the colour of facebook. did you subconsciously recognise it like i did?
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