“The worst loneliness is to not be comfortable with yourself.”
Mark Twain (Author; Adventures of Tom Sawyer)
Studies have shown that loneliness and depression are on the rise, despite technology allowing us to be connected better than ever before.
Weird, right? Right.
Many people today have hundreds-even thousands- of connections via online networks but not half as many real life friends. People seem to share experiences on social media just to feel ‘listened to’ or a part of something. I bet you can name at least one person from your news feeds who posts everyday, all the time about anything and everything… Maybe you’re that one person… Either way, each of us within our own sphere of influence should try strengthen our real life relationships. Why? Because as fantastic as social networks are, with loneliness and depression on the rise, as people substitute virtual connections for real life conversations, and it negatively takes a toll on the human psyche. If you don’t believe me take a look at many teenagers today. Many can’t hold eye contact, don’t know how to nurture a conversation that isn’t about World of Warcraft, and are afraid of talking to someone on the phone because they can’t control and edit the interaction like they can a text.
What’s a good solution? I think being present in the present, look people in the eyes when they are talking to us (rather than our phones) and just be better real life friends to those around us is a good start. After all, you never know when you may be wanting someone to reach out in person, versus a ‘like’ on Facebook. If you can think of anyone in your life who may need some real life conversation and support check out this 5 minute video, it really makes you think about how much Social Media affects your relationships…