Social Media and Self-Perception

In Michelle’s blog post this week, she brought up a great point about how the pressure of social media may affect our self-perception, identity, and happiness. I found this great article relating to that topic, and I wanted to share it with everyone.

The article chronicles the high rates of depression in avid social media users, and one thing that really stuck out to me was that “one factor for high rates of depression seen in social media-friendly people is the inconsistency they observe between their ideal cyber self and their self-image. The desire to be seen positively has taught us to silence our troubles and we now have no idea to express inner turmoil without feeling like we’re accepting social defeat.” I was curious about how true this statement was in my own life, so I did some reflection. In the last month, I haven’t had a single negative social media post. While I can think of dozens of complaints, frustrations, bad hair days, and tearful conversations I’ve experienced in the last 31 days, not any of it appears on my social media profiles. Where do you think this pressure to present our best, happiest selves comes from? Why isn’t it okay to be negative and depressed on social media? Why is it more acceptable to share our joy with the world than to share our pain? What do you guys think?