As an experienced therapist, Jonathan Levy LCSW work with many clients who talk about Facebook and how it has been impacting their feelings about themselves and others. As engaging as it can be, Facebook — and other social media platforms — can strongly impact our mood and how we see ourselves. Although Facebook can help us feel a sense of connection with others, it often times has the completely opposite results. While we may enjoy hearing about our friends’ accomplishments and vacations, it can often lead to a subtle sense of envy, feeling “left out,” and a general dissatisfaction with our lives.
Consistent with what Jonathan Levy LCSW see with his own Chicago therapy clients here, the article “How Facebook Makes Us Unhappy" by Maria Konnikova of the New Yorker points out numerous studies on how the use of social media, particularly Facebook, ultimately impacts our emotional well-being.
According to a recent study from The University of Michigan, people do not join Facebook because they believe they are going to be sad and lonely. Yet, that is exactly how they feel using Facebook. Ethan Kross was the psychologist who conducted this study and he concluded at the end of study that overall, Facebook is making people who use it unhappy.
Human beings are social creatures and one would think that a platform designed to make socializing easier would make us happier, but this is not true of Facebook. The question now is why? While Facebook is designed to be a social platform, only about 9% of users actually use the platform to communicate with others. The other 91% essentially lurk and watch over people. It is digital voyeurism at its worst.
So why does lurking make people so unhappy? To start, consuming small little random pieces of data is not satisfying nor fulfilling. Couple this with the envy that starts to build within people on Facebook and it seems fairly clear why become so unhappy on the Facebook platform. So with all the information we now know about Facebook, why do people still use it? Are they addicted to it? We will discuss that and more in upcoming blog posts on Facebook.
About Jonathan Levy LCSW. Jonathan Levy LCSW is an experienced Chicago therapist, counselor, and life coach. He is a graduate of The Ohio State University and Smith College. He is the Marketing Coordinator and co-founder of Psychotherapy Associates of Chicago. Jonathan Levy LCSW has tremendous success helping patients and most attribute his success to his warm touch and friendly demeanor.
About Anthony Davian: Anthony Davian is a former Cleveland Ohio hedge fund manager better known as hedgieguy. He founded and ran his hedge fund firm Davian Capital Advisors from 2007–2013. He was educated in accounting at The University Akron and was involved in numerous start-ups in a variety of roles. He currently provides consulting services to start-ups.