The Pros and cons of instagram , What ‘s the DANGER, and how to make sure you don’t loose your sense of identity in this world of visual temptation.
While everyone spends time thinking of their next IG post, our generation is slowly getting itself wrapped in a dangerous mindset. There is more to know about Instagram than the latest fashion trend or your favorite blogger ‘s morning coffee. How it works on you mind can be a great danger if you’re not aware of its consequences. With that said, Instagram can also be a good source of inspiration and guidance. However, beware of the wrong ways to use this social platform, or you may end up with an extremely negative way to live.
Lets start by stating why Instagram has so much success and how it can be positive in certain ways. This new world of visual content has definitively transformed our current society into a group of creative human beings. Developing an eye for photography, or being more in touch with our visual side can be a positive factor. Social networking also opened the world to an international window. Brands and businesses now have a worldwide visibility. This also applies to individuals, now developing friendships and contacts around the globe.
Instagram also brings people together. A lot of people can find similarities within each other and find comfort in having common lives to others around the world. Sometimes, we live in societies that do not resemble us. Our DNA requires others to survive. We love others appreciation and find comfort in being a part of the crew. So in this case, Instagram allows a lot of different types of people to expose their own habits and personalities.
Now, while Instagram brings us together, nurturing our sense of creativity and curiosity to discover the rest of the world, while businesses make more international sales and broaden their economic profits, most of us will simultaneously develop highly dangerous withdrawal from spending time on Instagram 2-3 times a week , if not everyday.
Lets state the 3 worst side effects of IG.
- Developing negative recognition and a narcissistic attitude.
- Developing a false sense of reality and irrational goals
- Developing daily anxiety and destructive self-appreciation.
Let me describe this in further details.
By looking at others awesome life, wardrobe, bodies or jobs, we tend to forget about the real values of life. We sink into our beds in the morning while scrolling through others ‘ life and start finding ourselves boring, uncool or useless. We start competing with the world and feel we need to measure up to be happy. We start thinking everything is greener on the other side of the fence.
Now, while you might think this feeling of anxiety applies to the smaller players only, you’d be shocked to learn that the most anxious people are indeed the ones fully engaged in the game. It is in fact relative to each person’s social position. The girl or guy with 100 thousand followers will also compare him or her self to greater accounts, and feel inclined to compete with an even higher reach. This is life in general. The human being is always looking for more. We’re easily trapped in this social recognition. This pushes people to extreme and dangerous behaviour too. Making the perfect photo to be put on the map is now a great danger too. By doing this, we become self-absorbed, forget our sense of judgement and measure our happiness to a number of likes or followers. This never-ending quest to succeed turns us into narcissistic creatures, forgetting about what really matters before Instagram.
We think of ourselves first and wonder how good we look or how cooler we can get. Now, it’s not entirely negative if you ‘re aware and careful. It’s ok to be enthusiastic about creating new photos or content, however, if you’re not genuinely loving the present moment, or trying to look perfect when deep inside, you’re just doing it for the gram, it surely will end up being a very anxious process for you and you might just end up feeling lost and out of touch with your real self and values. This brings us to developing a false sense of reality. We start living in the “GRAM “.
Here’s what I mean. We forget our daily appreciations. We also forget to be grateful for just being healthy. We forget our priorities. We start developing irrational goals, which we in most cases never reach. People on Instagram have this ability to alter reality.
Now, I don’t blame people for sharing the best they got. I also don’t blame people for having great photographic skills and making reality enhanced by more saturation! This is very normal. No one wants to follow a depressing feed. However, we do push the limits of reality, transforming our own understanding of it. We think everything comes easy, fast and free. We expect too much, too fast and in most cases fail to reach our goals, which results in a false sense of defeat.
Instagram also offers a great amount of filters that fool our minds . We can no longer take a photo without adding one of these filters. What we do exactly is sending our brain the message that without filters, we ‘re not worthy. Unfortunately, while Instagram offers great visual content and inspires the more grounded minds, it has also dangerously accentuated the rates of teen and young adults depressions , anxiety and “ BDD ”; body dysmorphic disorders. While young people tend to be more affected by the side effects of social medias, anyone from 25 to 45 using Instagram can get affected.
« Most of us have something we don't like about our appearance a crooked nose, an uneven smile, or eyes that are too large or too small. And though we may fret about our imperfections, they don’t interfere with our daily lives. But people who have body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) think about their real or perceived flaws for hours each day. They can't control their negative thoughts and don't believe people who tell them that they look fine. Their thoughts may cause severe emotional distress and interfere with their daily functioning (…) »
Instagram is a great, but dangerous tool. You have to make sure you’re very solid and grounded to use such a strong influencing media. Here are a couple tips you could note down to make sure you don’t develop the wrong habits and protect your integrity and mental health while using Instagram.
- Avoid using IG early in bed or before sleeping. You’re tired, or about to start your day. Don’t start by stressing with the gram. Take time for yourself and make sure you are in the present moment.
- When scrolling through your feed, make sure you follow positive influencers and don’t be fooled by phoney ones. Clean up your feed a little!
- Don’t compare yourself. Just use it to be inspired. If you start feeling stressed rather than inspired, stop. Don’t forget IG is not what matters most. It’s just a big window on people’s best moments and enhanced daily activities.
- Use Instagram with the right mindset. Don’t do it for the wrong reasons. Do it because you love photography, traveling, or staging a meal.
- Don’t ever do something to be popular, famous or rich. Do things out of Passion and genuine pleasure. If you ever get Popular famous or rich by being authentic, you won’t ever change. You’ll just see it as a flattering bonus.
https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/related-illnesses/other-related-conditions/body-dysmorphic-disorder-bdd# 1. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. (5th Edition). Washington, DC.