You probably think this is a post directed toward teenagers.
Plenty of adults are on social media too, even if on fewer platforms than teens. And all it takes is one platform to impact your mental health. Are you on Facebook? Pintrest? Instagram? Then social media is impacting you, for good or for bad.
Let’s consider together two areas where social media is impacting you.
Social media is impacting your self esteem.
I hope that your friends are posting fun, upbeat messages rather than critical rants. But either way, social media has a way of feeding on our own weaknesses, even when used in small quantities.
For some of us, it feeds our pride. We compare our family holiday pictures to other people’s family holiday pictures, and there’s a little ember of pride that grows brighter in our hearts. Uh oh.
Other times, we look at someone’s post of a fun vacation and while we may be happy for them, it reminds us of the things we desire but aren’t getting. We face issues of jealousy or covetousness. Ouch.
No matter how you are using social media, pay attention to how it makes you think about yourself and the things God has given you.
Social media is impacting your social skills.
Consider this question with me: Ten years ago, if you wanted to connect with someone, how would you do it? Most likely, you would pick up the phone and call them. You’d hear their tone of voice, the speed at which they answered your question. You might get together for coffee.
Has this changed in the world of social media?
We all know that it has. Today, we are much more likely to take a less-intensive approach to relationships. We text instead of call. We Facebook message instead of text. We “like” a post on Facebook instead of interacting with the person who posted it. Eek.
Of course, social media does allow us to stay connected with more people than we could have done in previous generations. But it is worth considering the quality of your relationships (and your relationship skills themselves).
Social media is not the enemy. But it does require wisdom and monitoring to use it well.
When we open the pages of Scripture, God does not mention Instagram. He is silent about any form of technological social media. But He speaks an abundance about human relationships and the human heart.
We all need social connection, and social media is a new way to do that without intensive effort or time. But don’t trick yourself into thinking it is not impacting you.