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Ordinary People Taking Action
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Some statistics I have read about Facebook:
Yet why do so many people secretly, and not so secretly, hate Facebook?
For many, Facebook causes people to look at others. To compare – taking someone else’s outside image and holding it up against the inside image of themselves. It’s stated that Facebook users spend more time examining other people’s posts than they do making their own posts. They aren’t using Facebook to get in touch and to stay in touch with friends – they’re using the site for “social surveillance”. According to author Meg Jay PhD, who wrote "The Defining Decade", Social surveillance usually includes judging people based on the content of their posts, how attractive they are, and how exciting their life appears.
When I was growing up, we didn’t have Facebook – or Instagram – or Snapchat – or any other social media site. In fact, we didn’t even have cell phones. Well, the cell phones we had were the size of a shoe box and weighed as much as a dumbbell. We couldn’t use them for texting and calls were super expensive. If you were lucky enough to have a cell phone, it was made very clear by parents that the phone was to be used for emergencies only. In other words, only if you were near death.
What I remember about growing up is that me and my friends were all self-conscious and worried about our appearance. We compared ourselves and wondered whether we were being invited to all the events. While judgment could sometimes be hard, and self-doubt could fill our heads, there was a break of sorts once we arrived home. We could check out and forget about the pressures of “keeping up” for a period of time. We didn’t have the ability to see what others were doing at the tap of a home screen.
I find nowadays we are increasingly living in a world of comparison. We have a hard time remembering that someone’s conscious post on social media is not comparable to our unguarded reality of life.
I decided this was an important topic to write about because I find while I am coaching professionals and students, that one thing is common – too many people are comparing their inner self with other people’s outer appearance.
The next time you log onto Facebook – or any social media – try to remember: