Is Trivial Social Media Activism Crippling Your Mental Health?
Find something else to channel your energy
The world is in a fragile state
Everywhere emotions are running high, and it seems feelings are getting hurt even if someone breathes. There is a deluge of information and viewpoints bombarded on us every waking hour but too little time to think and reflect. It is easy to get carried away by narratives and take up a strong position on any subject as though you should and your opinion matters in everything. You feel the urge to respond to posts that you could otherwise sidestep. When there are many like you itching to respond, the posts get scathing and often ugly.
Our emotions, feelings, and sentiments have become worse than coleus plants that break at a tiny tug. Mental health was hitherto a rare occurrence in many societies, now it is all-pervasive.
False sense of the need to be an activist or opinionated is affecting our mental health. If anyone opposes your views or counters then your reaction is largely predictable.
- You shut your mind and fume in anger. How dare anyone question my knowledge?
- You punch through certain keywords to look for online references to substantiate your point and win the “argument”. And there begins an endless loop. Because the other person can do the same. Where does it end?
Long after the event, you keep tossing and turning the conversation in your head like a half-cooked pancake unable to accept how your infinite wisdom was challenged. As the other person might have moved on to pleasant things, you continue to stew.
Where AI is driving behavior
Social media feed is the main culprit. They are creating micro pseudo suggestions to provoke the gullible, playing with minds to be sensitive to every issue.
Your feed is spewing information by the dozen 24 X 7. And the more you click on a post; the more you are served similar ones with a multiplier effect.
Ask yourself — isn’t it making you restless? The need to keep up, being the know, seen as active and involved?
You are getting sucked into an “e-street fight” with unknown opponents
You want to grab onto a cause to look involved, to find acceptance among your tribe. Fighting for a cause, and standing up for a movement sounds romantic, and thrilling.
Do you truly understand the cause?
Are you passionate about it or do you want to look cool in your social media feeds?
Do you fume at counterattacks and have bouts of anxiety and depression?
Be honest with yourself. The real reason you get upset is your lack of knowledge to understand and counter with a structured argument.
The bane of the present world is the aversion to using our brain and cogitate, question, form hypotheses, research, gather data, analyze, draw inferences and identify the limitations. Our lack of focus to understand complex issues and sensibly argue with logic is the cause.
Wasting time and potential
If you are unable to reflect, you are closed off to alternate ideas.
It takes effort, commitment, and sincerity to engage. Instead of accepting an opposing view as an opportunity to learn, you consider it as an affront.
Here’s the thing. You are not making any significant tangible difference to the world by slugging it out on social media.
You are wasting your time.
It is simply increasing your anxiety and hurting your mental well-being. You are being driven away from your goals and life’s purpose. The hard truth is you are wasting your energy on things you don’t truly understand or care about. The information inundation will ceaselessly continue. You must keep your head above the flood waters, stay afloat and watch out for yourself.
“It is our choices Harry, that show what we truly are, far from our abilities.” ~ Albus Dumbledore from Harry Potter
Key Message: A reason you get affected by everything around you is a lack of intense focus on something worthwhile. It is time to rein in and rightfully channel our energy for our well-being and inner peace.