The social media craze of Facebook, Tik Tok, YouTube, Twitter, Linked In, Pinterest, SnapChat, Instagram, WhatsApp, Tinder, text messaging and so many other platforms has taken over.
A perfect storm of extreme busy-ness and fear have forced people to live behind computer screens rather than pursue live social connections with real people in the real world.
Marketing guru, Faith Popcorn, author of the Popcorn Report, says that people are growing increasingly scared of leaving their homes. Many people believe the world is a big, bad, scary place and they would rather stay at home and use social media to communicate.
Social Media is No Longer a Fad
More than 2.5 billion people are actively using Facebook every month. In fact, 1.7 billion people log on to Facebook every single day in 2020.
And then there’s the worldwide mobile phone craze. It seems there are nearly 4.8 billion cell phones in use in 2020, which is almost 62% of the world’s current population using cell phones.
Let’s not forget the new platforms either. For example, Tik Tok already has over 700 million daily active users in early 2020.
Social Media Stress is Real
Regardless of how social media helps us solve problems with things like busy-ness and fear of leaving our homes, it also creates plenty of problems and causes a ton of stress, in many different forms.
4 Types of Social Media Stress
Emotional Social Media Stress
- FOMO – Fear of Missing Out – People can become panic-stricken at the idea of not being in the proverbial loop.
- Predators – Too many people have gotten caught up in the world of online predators.
- Cyber-Bullying – Social Media is a dangerous place if you7 have weak self-confidence or if you don’t practice GREAT risk management.
- Fake News – A relatively new problem that has taken hold because too many people choose not to use critical thinking skills when they read online. Many people tend to believe what they read without question, which can become problematic if they also act on the fake information.
Physical Social Media Stress
- Couch Potato-itis – People tend to stay seated for very long periods to be active in the online world, and this leads to obesity and problems with muscles, bones and joints.
- Texting Thumb – Arthritis in the part of the hand where the thumb connects to the wrist, is sometimes called texting thumb. Forceful pinching and gripping motions can also cause severe symptoms.
Electro-Magnetic Social Media Stress
- Positive Ions – Living in a world surrounded by positive ions emitted by technology is bad for health. We all need to create systems in our physical environments to neutralize and reduce the over-production of positive ions.
- Radiation Danger – Most electronic devices give off various types of radiation waves. It’s no laughing matter and we must do what we can to protect ourselves.
Chemical Social Media Stress
- Cortisol Over-Production – Most people already over-produce the toxic stress hormone known as Cortisol in their bodies. Without the vigorous physical exercise needed to burn off this excess Cortisol production, people can get themselves into plenty of trouble as far as chemical stress is concerned.
Social Media Therapy
But it’s not all gloom and doom. Thankfully, when used in a constructive and controlled manner, social media can also be quite therapeutic.
Social media therapy can also be a form of expressive therapy, in which the act of creating and sharing audio, video, text and graphic content, can become an inspiring and empowering way of connecting with and understanding people.
Social media therapy combines aspects of talk therapy, visual arts therapy, writing therapy, and drama therapy and applies them in the online world.
Social Media & Happy Brain Chemicals
Social media therapy can offer the opportunity for a stressed person to increase production of Oxytocin, the love, trust and bonding hormone, by building proxy trust via online social media interactions.
Additionally, a person can increase production of Serotonin, the respect hormone, by working to achieve social status in the online world.
Both Oxytocin and Serotonin are important happy brain chemicals that serve to moderate the over-production of the toxic stress hormone, Cortisol.