The new age of media and self worth

Brooke Howard, Features Editor

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In this relatively new age of Internet and social media, we tend to value ourselves by what persona we show online. Our self-worth is measured in likes and followers and we forget what is real.

Some real problems are coming out of this media age. Such as, a lack of social skills, lack of empathy for others self-esteem, and all around a bad self-image.

The other day a friend took a picture of herself that really excited her. She decided to post this picture on Facebook and add a cute girlish caption.

An hour later, my friend looked to see how many people liked her photo and a heartbroken look came across her face, she said, “It only got three likes, and that includes my mom.”

Now, that might sound funny and lighthearted to you, but to her, that was the biggest blow to her, already low, self-esteem.

See, she measured her self-worth in how many people took the time to like her photo on Facebook, and she completely forgot about how many people turned their heads to look and smile at her that day.

Both sexes are being constantly shown a stream of photos that contain self-proclaimed perfect bodies, perfect hair, and perfect lives. We start valuing ourselves against these brief posed and photo-shopped images and our happiness declines.

According to psychotherapist Sherrie Campbell, “When we look at social media, we end up comparing ourselves to what we see, which can lower our self-esteem. On social media, everyone’s life looks perfect but you’re only seeing a snapshot of reality. We can be whomever we want to be on social media and if we take what we see literally then it’s possible that we can feel we are falling short in life.”

This means social media is giving us a false sense of belonging and meaning to what is important in life.

We are making online connections rather than the real-life exchanges that make our lives truly important and exciting.

We have all heard, “Put down the phone and go outside.” So, I am not going to say that’s the answer.

The answer is to choose now what is going to define our generation. I chose to understand that I love sharing photos of myself and the activities I am doing on social media. I am also not going to post about my struggles or rant on Facebook (that’s what real-life friends are for). I also understand what other people post is something we should celebrate, but not compare ourselves and our accomplishments too.

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