Do 'likes' on social media matter?
A ‘like’ doesn’t mean that you’re liked
Getting liked on social media often makes us feel pretty good about ourselves. But do ‘likes’ on social media matter? Have you ever asked yourself why you feel a little rush when you get lots of likes? A study has shown that the reward center of the brain is giving you a sense of pleasure, that’s the chemical dopamine rushing through the same part of the brain that is involved when you have sex!
Through social media, it is easy to express who we are, maybe even express who we want others to think we are. We post pictures when we have done something good, for example running, but we never post if we have any issues. This creates pressure where people feel like their life must be perfect on social media. We often see photos of sporty people, traveling, out with friends, and they are always happy. People who have apparently perfect lives on social media tend to get a lot of likes. But does this make us happy? And are people who get a lot of likes, liked?
When we see people living perfect lives of social media, we start to envy them. This can be how they look, where and how much they travel, their job, their family, or almost anything else. It leaves us feeling like there is something missing in our own life and that we want to be more like the people we see online. At the same time, we keep posting pictures of our own perfect life for someone else to envy.
The result of this all is an evil circle of envy and showing off. So how can we break out of this circle?
Don’t only post your highlights, be real. Don’t post updates only when you have a “perfect life moment”. Post if you failed your driving test, post when you spilled coffee all over you and had to walk around in a dirty shit all day and post when you had a tough day. This will make people leave more genuine comments where they also expose themselves more than they normally would. What you end up with is a closer, more genuine relationship with your friends.
Take a break from social media. There are plenty of good reasons to be on social media, but sometimes it can just get a bit too much. Taking a break from social media makes you feel so free, and you realize how much time you waste on social media every day. Now you can fill your time with meeting friends, go for a hike or sightseeing, or something else you always wanted to spend a free day on.