In as early as the late 1990s, social media, as we understand and define it now, came into existence. From the humble beginning of uploading your profile picture and connecting with friends online, social media has now become a massive multi-billion-dollar industry that has disrupted several businesses and social practices. Social media and anxiety have been linked together, and we have to take steps to deal with these mental health issues.
The majority of individuals are now consumed by social media, with people worldwide spending upward of 2 hours per day on social media. Browsing news feeds and checking the profiles of others have become a preferred pastime. This habit has become so widespread that it has now been tagged to be unhealthy.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety, which is used interchangeably with stress, is a feeling of fear or worry that can vary from mild to severe. To differentiate anxiety disorders from stress, you have to look at the cause. Stress is caused by external events or situations that have occurred or affected you. Anxiety is the worry or fear that something threatening could happen.
Anxiety is a normal reaction and is our body’s way of telling us to be alert of what can happen in the future. Preparing for your thesis defense may cause anxiety. Having your first child may result in anxiety. Moving to a new home may trigger anxiety. Anticipating what could happen or will happen in your life often brings about anxiety.
So the next question to ask would be, “what is the relation between social media and anxiety?”
Social Media and Anxiety
Social media is arguably the most valuable asset we have to connect and stay updated with friends and family. This fact is particularly indispensable during the COVID-19 pandemic or other challenges that prevent us from normal socializing activities.
Social media provides us with lightning-fast news updates and gives us the ability to check in on other people at the click of a button. There is no other form of information delivery that can match the speed and convenience of social media.
However, we have resorted, almost subconsciously, to compare ourselves to the lives of others through the use of social media. And this is where anxiety comes from. Social media and anxiety are two concepts that create a vicious cycle that includes:
- Feeling inadequate about your career
- Being insecure about your appearance
- Fear of missing out on experiences
- A feeling of isolation or loneliness
- Cyberbullying and discrimination
- Self-centered and arrogant thinking
These symptoms can also be a sign of a social media addiction.
Key Indicators that Social Media Is Causing Anxiety
People ignore the signs of social media affecting their mental health. But if left unchecked, this could have disastrous effects on relationships with family, friends, and colleagues. Take note of changes in your behavior or thinking that could be negative or toxic. Identify if you have problematic symptoms that include:
- Spending an unreasonable amount of time on social media
- Comparing yourself to others
- Being distracted from your responsibilities
- Engaging in dangerous activities to gain more attention online
- Having a hard time sleeping
Take Back Your Life and Protect Your Mental Health
In this day and age, social media and anxiety go together like peanut butter and jelly. You cannot use social media without feeling anxiety. The relationship between social media and anxiety and how it affects us as consumers is a terrible predicament that has contributed to the rise in mental health concerns. So raising awareness is vital.
Be aware of your actions and usage of social media and limit your engagement online as much as possible. We offer a number of therapy programs to help manage anxiety. Some of these programs include:
- Psychotherapy program
- Group therapy program
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Dialectical behavioral therapy
- Family therapy program
Read a book, find a hobby, exercise regularly. Use your time to do something more productive, and always cherish the life that you live. Be thankful for what and who you have in your life right now. For more information on social media and anxiety, contact the experts at Promises at 1.713.528.3709 today.