Everywhere you look, social media is being referenced in some manner. Whether you see hashtags, posts being referenced, or politician’s tweets being publicized, social media is one of the things that takes up much of our time. With the ease of apps and the continuous evolution of technology, social media has its hands in most things in our culture and it is here to stay.
On average, a past study has shown that most internet users are on social media and messaging platforms for an average of 2 hours and 22 minutes a day. Being online for 142 minutes a day in a 24-hour period may not seem like a whole lot, but weekly that is 16.5 hours; in a year that is a total of 858 hours which equals 35 days – a year. Keep in mind, this is only an average of the study and if you are using your phone, tablet, or computer more than that, then you may want to look at how you are spending your time online and decide to become more productive offline.
What could happen?
Spending multiple hours scrolling through social media platforms, streaming, or watching videos can be enjoyable for a while. Eventually what tends to happen is that you may experience FOMO, the fear of missing out, or find yourself comparing other people’s outsides to your insides. These types of emotions and fears are some of the newer causes of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, a substance use disorder, and worse, suicide.
Another concern with increased screen time is that people are not experiencing a human connection as much. Instead of going out to coffee with a friend, you may find yourself going to a coffee shop with your phone or laptop to FaceTime with a friend, or have a work meeting remotely with an application that allows you to see another person’s desk on screen in real-time. While this may be efficient, this does allow you the face-to-face connection that is needed for oxytocin to be produced in the body. When you are around people, the feel-good hormone, oxytocin, is expelled to ease tension, promote good sensations among others, illicit trust, and more importantly, inspire positive thinking with others by seeing their reactions firsthand, and hearing the inflection in their voice you cannot hear in a message.
There are, of course, some valid reasons to use social media in the duration of the day, but you should not let being online be your only means to communicate with others. Make the time to spend more quality time face-to-face with people that you enjoy so that you do not just rack up more unnecessary hours on social media.
Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, Valiant Living offers “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives in mind, body, and spirit. Through evidence-based therapy options and the endless adventure of Colorado, Valiant fosters connection, encouraging clients to get connected to themselves, their peers, their families, and their higher power. With the power of recovery, clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing. Call us today for more information: 303-536-5463