Oh social media, what have you done?
Social Media Anxiety Disorder (SMAD) – guilty as charged!
After I turn off iPhone’s infamous Marimba alarm clock at 6AM I find myself on Instagram, Facebook, Linkedin, and… ah heck, I’m on the Internet for a good while before I get out of bed.
It’s gotten to that point – I’d rather check to see if my tortellini pasta dish from the night before got any more “likes” before brushing my teeth. This, my friends, is common in the digitally infused world we live in today.
This attachment that many of us have with social media is something that researchers have called Social Media Anxiety Disorder (SMAD) – I’m guilty as charged! They didn’t go so far as actually classifying this as a disorder, but it’s something to consider (L. Meredith, Mashable 2013). Here are the common problems they’ve shed light on so that we don’t go (S)MAD.
1. “If Only” Syndrome
America’s “Today” show surveyed 7,000 mothers and found that 42% worry they are not as crafty as the other women on Pinterest – with some staying up all night negatively comparing photos (Mashable 2013). I have a feeling we Canadians aren’t far off. There are times I see something online and wonder to myself: “How come I haven’t thought about that yet?” Meredith asks the perfect question: “are you one of the thousands suffering from Mason Jar Envy?” No comment =|
2. #Foodporn For Thought
Dr. Valerie Taylor, the mental health chairwoman for the Canadian Obesity Network, recently said: “you are more likely to suffer from an unhealthy food obsession if you’re someone who frequently posts food photos” (Mashable 2013). Hang on… my Instagram is loaded with food pics, so should I be concerned? I won’t buy into this and neither should any other food lovers out there!
3. Flop Fest
We all have that friend who makes us laugh with their witty Tweets. They do it so well within the 140-character count that it’s hard not to envy them. I especially feel this as a writer who sometimes struggles to hit the sweet spot in 10 words or less. Then come the replies, retweets, and favourites attached with a good tweet. We can’t deny it – it feels good when others are interested in what you have to say (or show).
Here's what I’m taking away from this:
I wasn’t the first to post a pic of a mason jar mojito, and I may question why no one favourited my latest tweet, but I (and everyone else who falls into this trap) can’t take it all so seriously. Social media is supposed to be fun, so let that inner ego subside and simply enjoy what tips and laughs you come across online!
ENDNOTE: This blog is in response to Mashable’s “What to Do When Social Media Drives You Crazy” post on 05/22/13