Social media apps such as Facebook will continue to make their mark in the lives of its users.
We use social media to connect with other people, to express ourselves, and to see what our friends are up to. What we should not be using social media for is how we define ourselves based on the number of likes and comments our posts get. The study proves that this is exactly what we are doing.
Facebook Brings the Loneliness in Us
If before, we use Facebook as a way to catch up and connect with the people in our lives, these days, it seems that Facebook has become a popularity contest and it has greatly affected people’s feelings, self-esteem, and social value, at least that’s according to new research in Atlanta. The study shows that the more likes and comments someone gets on Facebook, the more he feels good about himself, while fewer likes and comments tend to give them a feeling of loneliness and low self-esteem.
Study Involving Undergraduate Students
The study was done on 79 undergraduate students who are either not allowed or allowed to post on Facebook for 48 hours. The participants who didn’t post on Facebook showed “lower levels of belonging and meaningful existence”. It confirms that when a person does not use Facebook for a certain period of time gives that person a negative effect on someone’s well-being.
How the Research Was Done
Those who were allowed to post on Facebook were grouped into two halves – one half was rigged so that their posts don’t get any likes and comments. Their posts were secretly made private while the other half was set up so that their posts get massive amounts of feedback. The students who did not receive any feedback felt “invisible” and those who received feedback have felt a sense of belonging.
What Happened to Facebook and its Users?
This study alone has proved that Facebook was not what it once was perceived to be. People on Facebook now hang out in the social media because it has affected the way they see themselves. Unfortunately, the same thing can be said to people who are older than the students in this study. Even people with work, already successful people, and jobless people get the same feeling as these participants. It’s alarming to know that a social media that was meant to bring everyone closer or connected has become a reason for people to feel this way.
Are You One of Them?
If this article hits home, then it’s quite clear that you have been affected badly by Facebook. Did you feel bad when your latest status update didn’t get the amount of likes you anticipated even though you swore that it’s the funniest remark you’ve come up with? Did you feel elated upon seeing your latest photo on Facebook receives more amounts of likes than usual? If you answered yes to either or each of the questions, it’s time to ask yourself: How did I let Facebook affect me this way?