The fault in our social media accounts
(The Philippine Star) - October 12, 2019 - 12:00am

In this day and age, a person’s worth or success is measured not by his/her capabilities, talents, skills, or the quality of his/her work, but by the number of “Likes,” “Comments,” “Shares,” “Views,”  “Retweets,” “Followers,” or “Subscribers” that his/her social media accounts such as Facebook (FB), Twitter, Instagram (IG), or YouTube have accumulated over a given period of time. 

While the social media serves as a bridge that connects us to the world, provides solutions to those who are in a long-distance relationship, promotes businesses, and offers tons of information – it is not without flaws. 

One major setback is this: it has become an avenue for netizens to bash celebrities, resulting in so much distress, pain, and anxiety. It is a place where politicians, actors and actresses incessantly receive criticisms or offensive remarks from ill-mannered individuals. The actions of prominent people are being scrutinized. Reputations are destroyed by trolls who hide behind fictitious names and fake profile pictures.

Not only that. Even ordinary citizens humiliate one another on social media because of envy. Social networking sites are so powerful that they can destroy friendships. 

How do we deal with those kinds of problems? Here are four simple ways:

First, by spending less time surfing the internet. Let us divert our attention to creating new hobbies that are good for the soul such as writing a journal, reading a novel, painting, or photography. Writing a journal helps us analyze our thoughts and emotions. Reading a novel makes us smarter. Painting expands our imagination. Photography helps us express our feelings.

Second, by practicing self-restraint with regard to uploading pictures, sharing the milestones in our lives, posting comments, etc. We have to be decent in our selfies, too. In every activity that we do on social media, it is crucial to always consider other people’s feelings and their probable reactions.

Third, by avoiding comparison. Comparing ourselves with our so-called friends on social media is unhealthy. Just because our friends seem to have attained the height of success doesn’t mean we’re a failure. What we see on the internet is not necessarily what we get in real life, so there’s no need to get jealous.

Fourth, by loving ourselves more. This may be done by counting our blessings every day. To be truly happy, we must not seek the approval, validation, or affirmation of our friends. The trick, therefore, is to appreciate who we are and be contented with what we already have.

Now, the next challenge is to use our social media accounts not only to gain more friends and popularity but also – most importantly – to rebuild strained relations. – LEONARD GELACIO, San Fermin, Cauayan City, Isabela

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