For 2023, we all have our resolutions. Besides losing weight or wanting to do more with our lives, some look to social media as a resolution. Of course, some want to lose it less, but others want to use it more. To be a voice on social media, be it on TikTok, Instagram, or Twitter, or want to become a YouTuber. Perhaps it’s for financial reasons, or maybe it’s just for personal gratification. Whatever the reason, you must know the pros and cons of social media for youth. In this post, we’ll discuss all of them, and you can decide on the advantages and disadvantages of social media.
Pros and Cons of Social Media
Social media and health are connected. There are certain positive effects of social media on youth. Learn how social media in the workplace affects employee productivity.
The Pros of Social Media
Social media use, particularly in excess, has had a bad reputation, and we understand why, but there are a few advantages to it. Here are a few pros of social media for youth right now.
Perhaps the most significant advantage of social media is getting things off your chest. Be it an opinion you’ve wanted to tell everyone or to vent about something terrible that happened in your life, it’s good getting it out, and often, there’s someone who will agree with you or at least offer some sage advice. If you decide to become a more prominent personality and get a lot more of a following, this can help you express yourself even further.
Of course, if you have severe problems in life, you shouldn’t hesitate to seek professional help and find a therapist. However, while some people may be able to give you some good advice, the problem is that some people aren’t equipped to tackle specific mental health issues that you may have.
Another obvious benefit of being a social media personality is making friends. One of the original goals of social media was to make friends and connect with them. Many of us remember MySpace and its top friend list. The bigger your reach, the more friends you can make.
Of course, many of these friends may be long-distance, and you’ll probably not meet them in real life. We should also probably mention that social media friends aren’t as close as real friends. For some, they’re more like acquaintances. Even so, there is still an opportunity to socialize and reap the benefits.
One of the pros of social media is that it can help you to make connections in addition to friends. You may be able to make friends with someone who can hook you up with a job or another deal. You may find yourself making friends with someone from across the world, and then when you travel, they may give you a place to crash and help you save some money.
Then, there is the YouTuber side of things, where you can connect with other personalities and grow your audience. Networking is one way to succeed when growing your personality; you may make some friends along the way.
Stay in the Loop in Your Community
Another advantage is the local side of things. When we think of social media, we tend to imagine something broader, but learning what’s happening locally is also an advantage. It’s much easier to see what is happening regarding local events or news than if you don’t have a social media presence.
Relieve Depression and Anxiety
Social media is commonly associated with increased anxiety and depression, and we’ll discuss that further later on, but there are some benefits to your depression and anxiety when used correctly. For example, if you have a depressive episode, looking at funny memes or hearing words of encouragement from your followers may help you. Likewise, with anxiety, you may be able to watch some calming content or receive advice on tackling an anxiety attack.
Another benefit of being an internet personality is possibly making money off it. Some people make a side income, while others make it their living. If you become big, you can usually make money through various revenue streams, giving you more peace of mind.
In addition, you feel liberated from a 9-5 job. You don’t have to worry about having to wake up at a particular hour, no worrying about being fired because you’re late, and an opportunity to grow. This isn’t to say that being a YouTuber or making money off the internet isn’t easy or has its challenges, but for many, working from home feels liberating and a fun job.
The Cons of Social Media
Being a social media personality and a YouTuber is a double-edged sword with several health disadvantages. You can also read how social media affect teens. Here are just a few social media cons.
Not Enough Sleep
If you’re popular on social media, you will use it often, including before bed. Replying to comments, answering messages, and shooting content are examples. Unfortunately, it can disrupt your sleep pattern after a while. Too much social media use before bed may have a negative impact on your melatonin or keep you wound up. Those notifications and messages give you that dopamine rush. If you can’t sleep, you may use social media more, which can cause you to have more trouble falling asleep.
When being big on social media, it’s essential to give yourself a break an hour before bedtime and wind down with something that makes you tired. Not getting enough sleep can lead to other health problems, such as increased depression and anxiety.
A recent phenomenon we’ve seen in a few years is burnout, particularly from YouTubers and other content creators. Feeling exhausted and uninspired at your job can lead to this emotion, which is quite surprising.
You expect burnout from a menial factory job, not a career with endless possibilities. But think about it. When you have success on YouTube, it’s usually because of a particular niche or style, and if you break away from that style, your viewership and subscription base may drop because it’s not what people want.
However, for many, it’s a job, and they must provide more content without doing much to relieve that burnout.
Another mental health advantage of too much social media use is anger. Being angry about social media isn’t anything new. You may end up being trolled or see a post with an opinion that annoys you. However, with the political device ever-increasing, everyone’s anger seems to be at an all-time high. It’s hard to hold your tongue and lash out at someone, and letting those feelings go is difficult.
The solution is a bit hard to solve, too. You could curate your feed until it’s nothing but things that make you happy, but the problem is creating an echo chamber. And if you’re going to be a YouTuber, outrage sells, so there’s another can of worms.
Social media can be pretty addictive. To many, the likes, comments, and messages you receive incentivize you to refresh the page repeatedly. In the MySpace era, social media was a little less addictive, as once you were off your computer, you could not access it. Nowadays, we have phones, and it takes quite a bit of willpower and discipline to strike a balance between being off the grid and being an addict, particularly if you’re going to make a name for yourself.
Another emotion you may face on social media is FOMO, or the fear of missing out. You may always stay on social media for fear of missing an opportunity, such as a party. However, seeing a group of friends having fun without you makes that sensation a lot worse. FOMO is a phenomenon that has become even more intense thanks to social media, and with more people on it, it will only worsen.
Everything is Changing
Another disadvantage of living off social media is the anxiety and the fact that everything keeps changing regarding rules or what’s popular. For example, you may have to change the content you post to keep up with the algorithm or worry about an update to the terms of service retroactively taking down your previous content. Things move fast on the internet, and having to keep up may impact your anxiety and depression. As a result, you may take a social media detox.
Being big on social media has pros and cons, just like any other career or lifestyle choice. The solution is to be aware of the pros and cons of social media and try to harness the good and filter out the bad. As social media marches into the 2024s, we wonder about the health effects. No matter what, we shall keep you posted.