“People who feel isolated and lonely and excluded tend to have poor physical health. They don’t sleep well, their immune systems sputter, and they even tend to die sooner than people who are surrounded by others who care about them.”
This is something we all know deep down inside. Even when we are not with other people, we spend time thinking about what other people would think or say if they could see what we were doing.
This is where social media becomes very dangerous. It allows us to use everything we do as a tool to get more social acceptance.
Going on a relaxing vacation? Post it on Facebook. Spending quality time with the family? Post it on Instagram. Kid did something funny? On we go to Twitter.
You may wonder what the harm in this is, but I encourage you to check yourself. The next time you do something that is really enjoyable, how strong is your wish to post it on Facebook.
Why are you posting it to Facebook and what did you like about that moment in the first place?
There is extreme importance in learning to enjoy the moment, and social media has the ability to steal that moment using our ingrained instinct to get more social acceptance.
We get a dopamine rush from getting liked but our bodies confuse that with likes. Then, becasue likes are so easy to get, our motivational system hones in on them, abandoning the importance of the moment, even if it involves actual social acceptance.
This is the same situation as our minds trying to tell our bodies that a donuts are real food. Social media acceptance is a lie.
First, a like doesn’t actually mean anyone likes you. Second, pictures of what you do are not you. Third, you can have all the likes in the world and still be completely lonely, not to mention be absolutely no closer to sex or security.
Posting things to Facebook is no more wrong than a glass of wine. It is just important to realize what it is and what it is not.
If we are posting becasue we want to share our lives with our loved ones, great! If we are posting becasue of the desire to be liked, watch out!
Our bodies are finely tuned machines for getting what we want and dopamine is king. It is a motivational system with the ability to learn. If it finds something it really likes it will sacrifice almost anything to get it.
This system is what causes obese people to keep on eating, and you to sacrifice a once in a lifetime mountain top experience for a few lousy likes.
Take a look at this picture, where is your eye drawn?
If your eye is drawn to the 26, 3, 10, than you are like me. That brief burst of excitement you get when you see the red notification icons means your dopamine system has already started learning.
I suggest getting out and doing something totally amazing and leaving your camera behind. Teach your brain real value before it is too late.