Healthy Living

Some people taking a break from social media for reality check

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Do you ever feel less than perfect when just a few minutes on Facebook ends up filling you with envy over your friend's great vacations and their seemingly mistake-proof kids? You're not alone. Recent research finds that people use Facebook to compensate for their own deficiencies.

"Facebook highlights the positive aspects and can cover up the negative parts in you," said Dr. Stefan Hofmann, a professor of psychology.

Psychology professors recently took a comprehensive look at 22 recent studies and found most people use social networks for two common reasons: a sense of belonging and presentation.

"It can be an opportunity to create a life that one wants to live rather than a life that the person actually lives," said Hofmann.

These days, it seems everyone is logged on and living "ideal" lives. Christie Crowder recently decided she needed a reality check and took a break from it all.

"I virtually unplugged from everything just to let my brain breathe," said Crowder.

She's not alone. A quick search shows others quitting social media, calling it "Fakebook." Crowder didn't feel that extreme, but she found a new attitude about it all.

"I realized that I don't have to fit in as much as I thought I did. I can just exist," said Crowder.

Some people said they're tired of the competitive parenting trend they see on social media. Psychologists note all those comparisons can make people feel insecure and inadequate.

The best tip may be to slowly wean yourself off from looking at what everyone else is posting and just do something for yourself. And realize that it's not the real world. Crowder said unplugging is all about perspective.

"It was an experience that I really needed and recommend for anyone that can stomach it," said Crowder.

(Copyright ©2014 KABC-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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facebook, technology, twitter, healthy living, denise dador
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