7 Ways Social Media Can Be Good for Your Mental Health We often hear only about the negatives of social media, but here are just some of the benefits thoughtful engagement can provide. BY GERMANY KENT
Sharing and connecting online can improve your mental and physical health.
“ The value of positive affirmations overcomes negativity, and in creating a positive timeline, the result of self-awareness and discovery is far greater.”
Many people use the internet as a primary way of communicating and learning. The internet has become a source of valuable information and inspiration that if used as a resource for good it can actually improve your mental health.
Social media allows you to interact with the world. Social sites have been able to serve as wonderful tools that can aid in helping you to learn more about yourself and the world around you. It's a platform for expanding into areas you are curious and passionate about and with good content readily available, it allows you to gravitate towards what inspires you - things you need for a healthy mind, body, and spirit, and things that will allow you to reach a place of greater awareness. Here's how:
1. Sharing personal information on social media is satisfying.Researchers at Harvard University recently learned through a study that the act of disclosing information about oneself on social media activates the same part of the brain that is associated with the sensation of pleasure; the same pleasure we get from eating food, getting money or even having sex. This would explain why some people are so engaged on social media and really find pleasure in exposing their lives to others. I call it the "live to post" syndrome.
2. Social media reinforces positivity and self-discovery. We all know that social media is addictive and is a powerful tool to distribute humorous and entertaining content, but it is far more than that. Social media allows you to find your niche and gravitate towards things that are interesting to you. In doing so, you begin to build a timeline that represents your essential self. The value of positive affirmations overcomes negativity, and in creating a positive timeline the result of self-awareness and discovery is far greater.
3. Social media allows you to generate genuine connections. Whether your goal is to become a social media influencer or if you are solely trying to improve your own life, social media gives you a platform to connect. It offers strategies for making genuine connections with like-minded people. Connecting with individuals who share the same interests will bring value and more satisfaction to your life both on and off line.
4. Social media gives you a voice.A team of researchers in the UK recently did a survey and found 53% of people said social media had changed their behavior. Suddenly, everything you may have wanted to say, you can now boldly say those things on social media. The platform has given a voice to the voiceless and those who were not comfortable speaking out on issues before are now able to raise their voices.
5. Social media makes you slow down. A study conducted by researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Milan found that spending time on social media helps people relax, decrease stress levels, and slow down their heart rate. Technology is something we can't get away from. We have to embrace it. As we take time to engage on our social media channels it allows us to be mellow, feel calm and take in things in that moment. This sort of intellectual stimulation generates positive energy, both practically and creatively.
6. Social media improves communication. The way we communicate has evolved with diverging technologies and improved web experience through social media. Social media brings our personal world before a wide audience. With a 24-hour stream of content readily available, it offers a great way for people to find their own truth, promote their own agenda and produce their own news.
7. Social media improves outlook. The web has become a central platform, and being on social media can be liberating, life changing, and a rich experience. Because it is so personalized to fit your individual taste, if used properly, social media becomes more effective, meaningful and pleasurable the more you use it.
German Kent thinks, writes, and speaks about the ethics of social media, branding on social media and the impact of cyberbullying on today's youth. She advocates to end cyberbullying, and promotes the use of manners and positivity in digital age communication. She uses her campaign "You Are What You Tweet" to educate, and evoke emotion in people about Internet etiquette. Kent has appeared across all mediums (TV, radio, print, online) and has been featured and interviewed as a national authority on social media throughout national media. For more information visit GermanyKent.com.