3 Ways to Use Social Media to Boost Health, Get Into College & Enhance Mental Health
There is a lot of social media news every single day—the high maintenance nature of social media is not lost on us!
Social scientists are also taking the time to analyze what social media is doing to us. In today’s news, we are seeing some trends which may sway people into ignoring the positives of what social media has to offer.
Here are some news highlights from the last week and how you can champion social media, using it to better your life.
Motivation and exercise
Paul Mayne from the University of West Ontario posted commentary today about social media and exercise, stating his studies showed:
The study's findings showed that providing supportive physical activity environments within Facebook may be a successful avenue to get students exercising. The study did, however, also identify a potential maladaptive side of Facebook resulting from social comparisons, bullying, and feeling left out.
Sports and Exercise Psychology as a study will no longer ignore the intense effect social media has on our lives—every single facet! Recognizing how we can manipulate social media into an advantage for our physical health is what writers like Mayne are attempting to accentuate, by finding a balance of mental reaction to social media with physical action from the motivation received from the community within it.
HOW TO FIX: Find upbeat communities online, through Pinterest, YouTube, Tumblr, or more niche areas of social media to find your tribe! Make sure they are motivational, positive, not-shaming, and instructional so that you always make strides toward your most confident self. Don’t allow yourself to be exposed to the negative side of bullying and comparisons. Choose positive influence!
Writing great college applications
There have been rumors and conspiracy theories circling around the internet for the last decade about how your social media accounts should also act as a business profile, a portfolio of sorts for your capability to be a proficient student or worker.
Jessica Hayes points out how 25% of college admissions officers admitted to looking at the social media accounts of their applicants to gauge some of their worth.
This particular statistic brings about a lot of questions about our connections with our social media. Many find Instagram and Twitter have better privacy protections and policies against others like Facebook. There are many people asking because of these types of studies “Should this even be allowed?” The dialogue will continue possible for decades to come.
HOW TO FIX: Take a long look at all of your social media profiles. Make sure they are a reflection of how you want to come across to the rest of the world! Take pride in your online image. If you don’t feel it represents you, start deleting and making changes until you’re comfortable. Social media profiles are a fantastic way to let the world know your best self. Make sure you use it to its advantage.
Awareness of causes of depression
Erica Evans from Deseret News has fascinating statistics to show us right now about how social media is more likely to cause depression in girls than other genders. This study came from The University of Essex and University College London.
The goal of this study was dictated as follows:
“[It] did not attempt to prove that social media causes depression, but showed there is a stronger association between social media and depression for female teens than for males.”
This is caused by several factors, such as a female’s likelihood to spend an overall increased time on social media compared to anyone else. The harassment from women is also a different flavor than any other, changing the social media game from those ingesting it.
HOW TO FIX: Social media is what you make of it. No matter how many hours a day you spend on your phone or computer, all that matters is you are making the most out of your time by exposing yourself to quality content. Analyze your usage and what you are looking at every day, and adjust what is on your feeds if necessary to something that brings you more happiness each time you log on. Social media should not cause depression for all of the wonder it gives the world; and the users can make sure of that!
Stay up to date on your social media news—not just algorithm changes, but how it is affecting the world as we know it!