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The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

Social Media: How We Can Better Our Lives in 2023 as Teens and Young Adults

I encourage you to take these small steps, to take small parts of the day to enjoy the present, to appreciate yourself and the life youre living now. To focus on whats real and authentic in the world and to enjoy it.
MartaZ*
I encourage you to take these small steps, to take small parts of the day to enjoy the present, to appreciate yourself and the life you’re living now. To focus on what’s real and authentic in the world and to enjoy it.

Social media has become very prominent in the lives of teens and young adults all around America. Over the last two decades, social media has become the “norm”. The way we communicate, the way we express ourselves, and the way we shape our beliefs on the world around us.

Social media plays into mental health in the way it promotes certain trends and ideologies on topics revolving around mental health. These controversial and problematic topics and trends can be way too much for young impressionable minds to digest.

The use of social media is understandably popular to the extent of what it was intended to be, a social platform made to connect us with our community and even extend us to connect with others around the world. This sounds great and positive in theory. However, social media definitely has an underbelly that has a much more toxic and damaging impact than it may seem.

“Social media has some good intentions: connecting you with people all around the world, showing you content you are interested in, and providing endless entertainment. But there are also negative consequences to endless scrolling. Research has shown that young adults who use social media are three times as likely to suffer from depression, putting a large portion of the population at risk for suicidal thoughts and behaviors.”

Social media promotes a facade of life, giving a romanticized view of each other’s lives, only sharing the best pictures, the best angels, and the best version of ourselves. Giving the impression of “the perfect life”. This leads to a nasty habit of comparing ourselves to others and reminiscing on unrealistic standards. As a young individual, seeing influencers promote a specific body type, lifestyle, and way of thinking. Shaping young minds to have a perception of reality that is not realistic. Not taking the time to appreciate one’s own individuality and instead, seeking to be like somebody else.

It’s natural to aspire to grow into the best version of ourselves, to question things, and to compare ourselves to others, we all do it. However, it gets tricky to wish you looked a certain way that may be unrealistic or unhealthy just because someone else looks that way on social media. To see certain things on the media and wish you had them, and to virtually compare yourself and every aspect of your life to someone else, based on 15-second videos and edited Instagram posts online.

“59% of adults who use social media report that it has impacted their mental health. 41% of women on social media report feeling pressure to present themselves in a certain way. 63% of people on social media report being lonely.”

This would take a toll on ANYONE who is on social media investing time and energy pondering on unrealistic aspects of life, rather than taking the time to understand none of it is real.

Real is the world around us we can see and experience personally, real is the energy we invest in ourselves, and the way we treat each other. I implore you to take the time to reflect on the world around you, and the needs of others. We are all capable of growth.

Stepping out of the online world and learning to love and enjoy the present and the physical life right in front of us. I encourage you to remember high school is short, life is short, and taking the time to be present and aware of this life we all have is vitally important. This takes time and growth to step out of the “norm” and to step out of what’s comfortable, but I encourage you to take these small steps, to take small parts of the day to enjoy the present, to appreciate yourself and the life you’re living now. To focus on what’s real and authentic in the world and to enjoy it.

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About the Contributor
Leilani Dowding, Staff Writer
Leilani Dowding is a Senior at Santa Rosa Academy. Leilani often writes poetry and paints. She is a very creative individual. Leilani loves animals and nature and spends her free time traveling and exploring. Leilani has traveled all over the United States and plans to travel internationally after graduating high school. For a career, Leilani plans to be a CBT therapist (cognitive behavioral therapist) and is very passionate about helping others. 
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