Social media and your self-esteem

Do you ever find yourself scrolling through Instagram or Facebook feeling rife with jealousy as you catch a glimpse in to the lives of your “perfect” friends?

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Social media can take a serious toll on your self-esteem. It’s so easy to look through pictures of your Facebook friends and compare every aspect of your life to theirs. French researchers from Institut Pluridisciplinaire Hubert Curien, in an 2013 article published in PLoS ONE, found that the more time we spend on social media sites, like Facebook, comparing ourselves to others, the more depressed we get (

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It’s human nature to judge and compare when all we see is the perfectly crafted snapshots of someone’s life. We judge our own progress and successes against someone else’s and suddenly you find yourself way behind in life in comparison to what your friends are posting. I turned 27 this year and my Facebook newsfeed is FULL of engagements, weddings, babies and big promotions… I can’t help but to feel somewhat jealous and compare myself to them. It takes a lot to step back and think about all the good I have in my own life and recognize that perhaps all my travel photos are making other people feel the same way.

New research from the Dove Self-Esteem Project states that “the number of girls who say social networks make them feel worse about their appearance doubles between the age of 13 to 18, with 60% of university age students admitting it negatively affects their confidence.” This is a sad fact because what we’re all comparing ourselves to is not the reality! Social media users have the ability to choose the very best of their lives to show their audience and unbeknownst to us, that selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower they just posted probably took them at least 10 minutes to capture and edit with the perfect filter.

Increasing awareness about this issue is one of the only ways we can help people to stop comparing themselves to others and realize that social media users are only posting the parts of their lives that they want us to see.

So that leads me to this – have you felt this way after looking through Facebook or Instagram? Have you thrown yourself a little pity party after comparing your life to the seemingly perfect lives of everyone else? Let me know in your comment below!

facebook Comparing yourself to those around you and why it’s affecting your self-esteem 

Twitter Social Media – How it’s hurting your self-esteem

2 thoughts on “Social media and your self-esteem

  1. Hi Rebecca,
    I agree with you! I do feel sometimes jealous when looking through LinkedIn, receiving notifications about people my age or younger being promoted, changed to their job. Well that is but this is life. But what makes it intense is the fact that we are exposed to it over and over thanks to the archiving and notifications features of social media.

  2. I think your right. It is hard when scrolling through social media feeds not to feel jealous, and as though I’m not doing enough in life. But again, your right, when I step back and look at my life I realize all the good things that I have going on. It would be good if social media prompted you “what are you grateful in your life today?” Maybe that could be an ad-in developed by a mental health group? Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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