Study Document

Social Media's Negative Effect on Emotions Essay

Pages:8 (2307 words)

Sources:9

Subject:Communication

Topic:Social Media

Document Type:Essay

Document:#82396601


Introduction

Nowadays, almost everyone who has regular access to the internet has a social media account. Social media sites like Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram are very popular around the world. The sites allow people to sign up for accounts that they can use to socialize with friends and acquaintances online. When the social media sites first emerged, many people hailed them for connecting long lost friends and for enabling individuals to share about their lives. However, despite these known benefits of social media, it is now emerging that frequent social media use can affect a user’s mental health and their wellbeing. For instance, a number of studies have already shown that there is a direct relationship between frequent use of social media and depression and low mood (Berry et al., 559). This work is an investigation of the possible negative effects of frequent social media use. It explores different works and studies to show that the frequent use of social media can affect life satisfaction, happiness, well-being, and self-esteem.

Negative impact of social media and self-esteem

A recent publication by Thomas Goldhar on the web revealed that the frequent use of social media results in decreased social skills, narcissism, depression, anxiety, envy, and loneliness. For young people who have been raised in the age of the Internet, the effect of frequent social media use on self-esteem is quite clear. The publication argues that they get excited whenever someone likes or comments or engages in some way with the content they post and that this can usually become very addictive. The publication further argues that after a while, users usually get very affected by the comments and start looking at themselves through the perspective of those who engage with them. Thus, if they get likes or any other form of positive engagement on their post, they take it as the truth and feel very good about themselves. And if they do not get positive enough feedback, they also take it as truth and feel very bad about themselves. In short, the publication reveals that those who frequently use social media are becoming are believing less in their own opinions and more in those of those who engage with them online (Goldhar).

Most of the popular social media websites such as Facebook.com, Instagram.com, and Twitter.com are designed to enable people to share with others highlights of their lives. All the websites contain people sharing their thoughts or arguments on topical issues, their selfies, their affection for others, their pictures in unique locations, and their vacation photographs (Goldhar). Although, it may appear as if most people share everything on social media, this is not the case. In most cases, people only share positive stuff about themselves on social media. So while most people assume that their friends or acquaintances are living a good life, it often not necessarily true as most do not share post information about their hardships. The assumption that others are doing better is often one of the leading causes of low mood or depression among social media users.

Approximately 60 percent of social media users recently reported in a survey that their self-esteem was negatively affected by their frequent use of social media users. Approximately 80 percent also reported in the same survey that they believed that it is easy to be deceived via social media, while 50 percent admitted that social media had negatively affected their relationships (Goldhar). This survey shows that people do get negatively affected by social media. That frequent use of social media can result in mental health issues and can affect wellbeing. Quite a number of users have reported in the past that they needed to take time off social media because the negative effects were too much on them (Goldhar). One of the biggest negative effects of social media is that it leads to people putting more value on what others are saying, doing, or achieving and less value on self. This negatively affects self-worth and is what usually leads to low mood. Most users, however, do not understand this and do not know that their continued frequent use of social media could further affect them…

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…Twitter increase social media participation, social connectedness, social trust, and political participation (Konnikova). The findings that social media increases happiness and improves social connectedness are in agreement with what psychologists and social scientists have been saying for a quite a long time: social connectedness improves feelings of wellbeing. Several social psychologists have also argued in that past that social media is just a modern way of communicating and socializing according to them. That virtual connection with others provides generally the same feelings as real-life connection. And that sharing stuff with others online provides the same feelings of reward and happiness as when sharing with others face-to-face (Konnikova).

Research has revealed that social stimuli activates the same brain regions as those activated for food. So when someone interacts with you positively e.g. they compliment you or tell you you are trustworthy or honest, they activate same “happiness” centers in the brain as those activated when you see a tasty snack or meal being presented on the table. By this fact, researchers are trying to show that social media compliments, likes, retweets, reposts, or tags bring about happiness in the same way food or snacks would bring happiness (Conick). From the above arguments, there may be a case that the social media does not just have negative effects. That social media sites can cause happiness and positive wellbeing.

Conclusion

People are setting up social media accounts almost every other day to generally share positive information about themselves. Research shows that frequent use of social media can be addictive and that it can negatively affect mental health and wellbeing because it can cause depression, anxiety, bullying, envy, and so on. Many surveys of users have also ended in the users themselves admitting the negative effects of social media on their self-esteem and their relationships. Some new studies are, however, showing that social media can cause happiness. So there are both positive and negative effects of social media. Nevertheless, the key to using social media right is in the frequency of use according to many researchers. It is those who use it…


Sample Source(s) Used

Works cited

Berry, Natalie, et al. "Social media and its relationship with mood, self?esteem and paranoia in psychosis." Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica 138.6 (2018): 558-570.

Conick, Hal. Marketing's Ethical Line Between Social Media Habit and Addiction. American Marketing Association, 2017.

Do?an, U?ur. "Effects of social network use on happiness, psychological well-being, and life satisfaction of high school students: Case of facebook and twitter." Egitim ve Bilim 41.183 (2016), 217-231.

Goldhar, Thomas. The Negative Impacts that Social Media Have On Our Self-Esteem. Medium.com, 2018. Web.

Hu, Elise. "Facebook makes us sadder and less satisfied, study finds." In Isaac Gillman Online lives, offline consequences: Professionalism, information ethics and professional students. Interface on the Internet 9.1 (2009) 484-485.

Konnikova, Maria. “How Facebook Makes Us Unhappy.” Annals of technology. The New Yorker, 2013. Web.

Kross, Ethan, et al. "Facebook use predicts declines in subjective well-being in young adults." PloS one 8.8 (2013): e69841.

Orben, Amy, Tobias Dienlin, and Andrew K. Przybylski. "Social media’s enduring effect on adolescent life satisfaction." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116.21 (2019): 10226-10228.

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