While Facebook may be a convenient way to connect with your friends, the more you browse through your news feed, post comments and like posts, the more likely you are to feel unhappy and dissatisfied with your life.That’s according to a study published in the journal PLoS One.
Is Facebooking making you sad?
According to lead author Ethan Kross, a social psychologist at the University of Michigan, on the surface, Facebook provides an invaluable resource for fulfilling the basic human need for social connection. But rather than enhance well-being, Facebook use predicts the opposite result, it undermines it,” reports WebMD.
In the study, 82 young adult Facebook users found that the more they used Facebook over a given time, the more their happiness and life satisfaction levels declined. In contrast, face-to-face interactions with others led participants to feel better over time.
What’s the reason behind this?
According to DiscoveryNews, it’s not only that people gravitate toward social media when they’re feeling blue, but Facebook use actually seems to breed discontent.
Researchers aren’t sure why this is the case. But they suspect the fact that you’re seeing your friends constantly updating about the positive things going on in their lives and the wonderful things they’re doing could make you feel less satisfied with your life.
Should you ditch Facebook?
For now, experts aren’t recommending you quit Facebook for the sake of your wellbeing, but they suggest you become mindful of how much time you spend on the site and how your Facebook activity makes you feel, says DiscoveryNews.
It’s also recommended you talk with your friends face-to-face and do things that make you happy. And if other people’s glowing posts make you feel bad about your own life, remember that, on a site like Facebook, people tend to broadcast the good stuff and hide the rest, says the report.
Oscar Ybarra, a psychologist at the University of Michigan is quoted as saying real-life relationships have all sorts of benefits. Positive social interactions can boost happiness and intelligence and lead to better decision-making. People who are more socially integrated live longer, healthier lives.
Well, there you have it. Limit your time online and go out there to have fun with your friends and you’ll be much happier.