For The People

Are We Performing for Social Media?

It is no secret that technology is making steady advancements on the globe. As the world becomes smaller, people from far lying geographical continents can now become digital neighbours. Purchasing goods from all over the world is now possible with a few clicks of a mouse and a healthy bank account. E- commerce is moving at a rapid pace and in many areas, the human aspect of human resources is slowly being faded out. Social media is a key aspect of the digital world, how it functions and who calls the shots. We often take the word “media” and the subliminal importance of the role of communicators for granted, failing to remember that if there were no communicators or media to get global messages across, many more parts of the world would still be living in the dark.

Social media has turned many peoples’ lives around. For the better and some for the worse, depending on what your definition of ‘worse’ is of course. We are generally taught about reputation, what it means and how it can affect our lives from a young age. Parents try to steer us in their idea of the right direction by trying their best to ensure things like good education, the right group of friends, that we make the correct career choices and that we turn out to be decent human beings. Whether they have they got it right is up for debate.

As much as parents are a great means of influence to young people, so it social media. Social media is where trends are set and very fervently followed. This is not a bad thing as change is necessary and comes with an evolving cycle of growth and development. Where things become questionable is when a performance is put on for social media that is in high contrast with ones’ reality.

Social media influencers have created a world that perpetuates lavish living, high end fashion and a permanent state of looking good as the norm. When this is what you have the means to execute on a daily basis without extra pressure / stressing about where your next content for your next Instagram post is going to come from, there should be no worry. When you are trying to keep up with what society’s expectations are of having “made it” is when you could potentially get yourself in trouble.

The social pressures that young people put themselves through is a leading cause in depression and anxiety amongst the youth today. Living up to an expectation that is not your reality causes you to lose a sense of who you really are and instead of embracing your reality and being thankful for waking up to live another day in the life that you have, you are engulfed in the pressures of ensuring that the digital audience you project yourself to is buying into the untrue image you are putting out. It’s pretty simple really; if you don’t have it, you don’t have it, and begin to understand that that is okay.

If achieving a lavish, wealthy life is one that you want but do not have at the moment, go about procuring the means to make that your reality. Work hard, fetch your money and live your life the way you know will make you happy.

One of the biggest differences in the lives of current teenagers and young adults, compared to earlier generations, is that they spend much less time connecting with their peers in person and more time connecting electronically, principally through social media. Physical interaction with peers is an important part of understanding social behaviour as well as your space in society. When majority or all communication happens digitally, it is easy for anyone to feel isolated.

A good combination of realistic social media representations with physical social interactions is most certainly a winning recipe.

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