Here are a couple of good posts on how social media messes with our happiness, body image, and self-esteem. The first one is by Jen Comas Keck:
Social Media: Friend or Foe to Our Self-Image? (BTW, my jaw dropped at that video of Neghar doing 15 chin-ups. I just keep watching it! She is such an AWESOME freak. :-)
The next one is a Forbes article:
This goes right along with the "comparison is the thief of joy" discussions. If you think you should look, act, eat, train, or live like someone else, and you fall short, that's going to be a bummer.
I'm fairly new new to Facebook. I just joined a couple of years ago. I found my family and friends and my online "tribe" (a lot of you!) but I also friended or followed all of my favorite trainers, models, magazines, blogs, and fitness professionals. Early on I didn't filter my feed at all. I didn't know you could hide people or choose to only see some of their updates. I found the whole thing more and more draining, yet I felt obligated to "keep up" and read everything. I was clicking on every research study, reading every blog post, and looking through every vacation album. I could feel my life force dimming. LOL Eventually, it started feel like an obligation. I was checking it several times a day so I didn't fall behind or miss anything, but I also found myself feeling kind of bad afterward, maybe a little resentful and tired. That's when it dawned on me that I could filter this crap! I didn't need to unfriend anybody, but I could choose not to see that "friend" who only promotes the latest thing they're selling, or the family member who can't resist sharing every annoying religious or political thought, or the coworker who posts 150 times per day about not much. I've narrowed my feed down to the people and pages I really enjoy. This has helped tremendously.
I don't post much myself. And I think part of that may be paralysis related to comparison. You know what? I don't travel. I don't have kids. I don't have an active social life or a political agenda. I watch a lot of television, and I workout, and I eat. You can only share so much of that. :-) I do a lot of lurking and liking. I love my stripped down feed now. I don't miss any Go Kaleo, MDA success stories, or photos of Pauline Nordin's cat, you know, the important stuff that makes me happy. I've removed anything that consistently bums me out.
I have seven thousand twitter followers but I only tweet once or twice a month now (sorry, followers). I still use twitter every day to know what's going on in the world, following local police and media via text. I admit that started as a work thing, so when there was breaking news and we were doing cut-ins, I'd know the latest. I use it more for that now and less for conversation. Though I still drop in for pure goofy once in awhile.
Pinterest, don't even get me started on Pinterest! It's my new love. It lights up exactly the same part of my brain as cookies. It's a happy, happy addiction and I can't wait to check it every day. I think maybe it's because Pinterest is pure fantasy and escapism. I can post those beautiful travel photos even if I've never been there, the amazing food porn even if I don't cook, and the stylish outfits even though I live in sweatpants. Pinterest makes me so very happy that...wait, I need to go check it now, I'll be back.