Is social media the new tool of validation?

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Looking at your phone the minute you wake up in the morning is one of the many things only a millennial can relate to. Incessantly going through social media apps throughout the day has become a routine that has to be followed religiously in the social media generation. What began as platforms for connecting people and giving them space to express themselves, social media apps like Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram etc. have practically taken over lives in more ways than one.

Instead of being in the moment and enjoying it, clicking pictures and uploading them on social media is the more common practice these days. It doesn’t end with just posting these pictures, what follows is the constant need for authentication. The unending desire to get more likes and comments from people online in order to boost self-esteem in real life has made social media the newest tool for validation.

At an age where they should be working on building useful skills, developing confidence and working towards building stronger communities, young people often find themselves comparing their lives with others online and feeling envious or even adequate at times. From the way they dress to what they eat, the pressure to broadcast details of everything on the internet to get validation constantly looms. Words are powerful and we often do not realize that a simple word can make or break a person’s self-esteem.

While the perils are many, one cannot cut off from technology completely in this day and age. So love it or hate it, social media is here to stay irrespective. But we can curb its power to induce narcissism and be the ultimate platform for validation. Here are a few simple things to remember while using social media:

  • Be mindful of your daily social media usage time.
  • Follow people who inspire you to be happy and healthy.
  • Be careful about the kind of content you post.
  • Use encouraging and uplifting words for others. 

Social media has the potential to be a platform for people of all ages to derive happiness and motivation. So, next time you see someone post a happy family picture or share their success story, drop in a word expressing your genuine happiness for them. Break the vicious cycle of envy and hate with kind and loving words, one comment at a time!

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