Social Media’s Impact On Society

Social Media’s Impact On Society

Stop staring at a screen all day!
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The growing popularity of social media networks and applications has had many positive and negative implications for society.

Social media has revolutionized the way we view ourselves, the way we see others and the way we interact with the world around us. While social media has many positive implications, including promoting awareness of specific causes, advertising businesses and helping foster friendships between individuals who may have never met without social networking, the over-usage of social media networks can also lead to negative implications.

While there are countless exciting improvements in technology and social media have greatly increased communication across cultures and positively brought attention to events around the world, it is imperative that we examine the negative implications that social media usage has had on the human experience.

The overuse of social media is a global problem impacting all generations, and research has shown that substantial internet usage can have a highly negative impact on our mental and emotional health.

As the popularity of social media sites continuously grows, networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram continue to evolve. Three positive implications of social media include advertising, networking, and self-expression.

From an advertising perspective, social media offers a great outlet for charities, businesses, and individuals to promote themselves. Social media can be used as an outlet for global organizations to bring awareness to the causes they support and spread positive news that traditional media often doesn't cover. In addition to making advertisements more accessible through social media, these networks have helped foster relationships and connect people around the world.

Social media also allows for self-expression and can serve as a creative outlet for individuals to express themselves, share their artwork and share their voice on specific topics. Being able to express yourself in a healthy way is a very important part of the human experience, and social media can be a great outlet for young adults.

An additional benefit to social media includes following inspirational social media accounts, such as fitness or health inspired Instagram accounts, which can be motivational to followers.

While social media has greatly benefited society, too much of a good thing can always lead to negative effects.

Heavy technology usage often leads to addiction, especially in teens and young adults. However, this addiction is not limited to the millennial generation, as more and more adults from older generations are starting to utilize social networks to stay connected with their friends and families. Spending countless hours on the social sites can distract the focus and attention from a particular chore or assignment.

Along with the struggle to remain attentive, many people who overuse social media or use social media networks as their main form of communication report feeling anxious and depressed after overuse of social media.

Symptoms of anxiety, depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder can be triggered by the overuse of social media, as individuals are constantly concerned about their posts and communicating with others.

Social media also causes many young adults to compare themselves to others and envy a life that may not be attainable since many brands and individuals only share a small percentage of their lives online. It is important to remember that an Instagram or Twitter may just be a reflection of the "best" parts of a person's life and isn't an accurate representation of them as a whole.

It is imperative that teens and young adults remember that social media does not always portray the whole story and that having genuine communication skills is more important than social media.

Allowing social media to prevent you from experiencing genuine human experiences, such as spending time with your family or spending time outdoors, can be very unhealthy.

In an article entitled "Tweets, Texts, Email and Posts," author Tony Dokoupil explores the story regarding a man named Jason Russell. Russell forwarded a link to an internet documentary called “Kony 2012," which shared his deeply personal web experiences regarding African Warlord Joseph Kony. The film received more than 70 million views in less than a week.

While the film brought awareness to the issues facing African children and child soldiers, the sudden fame had a significant impact on Russell. Russell began obsessing over the number of views received and eventually underwent what doctors now call a temporary psychotic break.

After posting a quote by Martin Luther King, "If you can't fly, then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk, then crawl, but whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward," Russell took off his clothes, went to the corner of a busy intersection and repeatedly slapped the concrete with both palms ranting about the devil.

This is just one example of how social media can have both positive and negative implications on an individual, as the fame has caused severe mental health implications for Russell, but also brought awareness to a growing epidemic of child soldiers.

While I personally have not experienced mental health implications over the number of likes I’ve gotten or have not gotten on a post, I do tend to “obsess” over it. If I don’t receive the desired amount of likes on a picture I have posted on Instagram, I’ll just delete it.

The more likes I get, the better I feel about myself.

This is something I have been trying to work on since the number of likes I get shouldn’t affect how I feel. Many young adults equate a part of their identity or self-worth with the number of likes they receive on a post and forget that a post does not define who you are as a person and should not change the way you view yourself.

My social media usage has decreased significantly, but I still worry about the number of likes I receive because I want to use social media as a way to express myself and share my ideas with others. Remembering the purpose behind what I am posting and trying to identify the purpose of what I share on social networks helps me identify if the number of likes matter.

Since I started college, I have extensively examined the effects that social media has on a person. Specifically, I have explored how social media usage affects my own generation. It may seem obvious, but I’ve noticed that I do best in classes when I am on my phone less.

Even though this may seem obvious to you, sometimes it’s the most simple thing that we overlook when it comes to social media usage. I have strongly considered joining the “unplugging” movement, but I can’t bring myself to do it. If that doesn’t say something about the effects that social networking sites have on a person, I’m not sure what will.

Unplugging is taking yourself off of social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Even though my social media usage has become less of a problem, I still struggle with remaining off my phone and being involved in the “real world."

Social media has impacted our society for better and for worse.

It is up to us to decide how we view social media and how we allow social networking to either benefit or harm our lives. It is imperative to remember that the genuine human experience of being able to communicate in person, network in person and form relationships with others outweighs social media. It is also important to remember that the number of likes or shares you receive does not define who you are or your self-worth.

The more educated I become and the less time I spend on social media, the more I realize that there is a lot more to life than sitting behind a screen all day long.

Cover Image Credit: LinkedIn

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44 Lyrics For When You Need An Instagram Caption

Your caption is just as important as the filter.
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Choosing the caption for your Instagram can be almost as challenging as deciding on a filter. So, if you’re ready to post that Insta, but don’t know what to say, here are 44 lyrics for when you need an Instagram caption.

1. “Be young, be dope, be proud.” - Lana Del Rey, "American"

2. “I can’t really see another squad tryna cross us.” - Drake, "No Tellin’"

3. “Darling I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream.” - Taylor Swift, "Blank Space"

4. “I’m throwin' shade like it’s sunny.” - Nicki Minaj, "Want Some More"

5. “I’m gonna live like tomorrow doesn't exist.” - Sia, "Chandelier"

6. “Find me where the wild things are.” - Alessia Cara, "Wild Things"

7. “If I was you, I'd wanna be me too.” - Meghan Trainor, "Me Too"

8. “Sweet like candy to my soul, sweet you rock and sweet you roll.” - Dave Matthews Band, "Crash Into Me"

9. “I swear this life is like the sweetest thing I’ve ever known.” - Drake, "Over"

10. “I hope you never lose your sense of wonder.” - Lee Ann Womack, "I Hope You Dance"

11. “But if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like nothing’s changed at all? - Bastille, "Pompeii"

12. “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.” - John Lennon, "Imagine"

13. “You can’t choose what stays and what fades away.” - Florence + The Machine, "No Light, No Light"

14. “She acts like summer and walks like rain.” - Train, "Drops of Jupiter

15. “She’s a good girl, loves her mama. Loves Jesus, and America too.” - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, "Free Fallin’"

16. “Lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones.” - Coldplay, "Fix You"

17. “Say you’ll remember me.” - Taylor Swift, "Wildest Dreams"

18. I’ve got thick skin and an elastic heart.” - Sia, "Elastic Heart"

19. “Give me the beat boys and free my soul.” - Uncle Kracker, "Drift Away"

20. “One of these days the clocks will stop, and time won’t mean a thing.” - Foo Fighters, "These Days"

21. “Sunshine mixed with a little hurricane.” - Brad Paisley, Perfect Storm

22. “You are the piece of me I wish I didn’t need.” Zedd feat. The Foxes, "Clarity"

23. “Her mind is Tiffany twisted, she’s got the Mercedes bends.” - The Eagles, "Hotel California"

24. “Life imitates art.” - Lana Del Rey, "Gods And Monsters"

25. “Nobody said it was easy, no one said it would be this hard.” - Coldplay, "The Scientist"

26. “You’re gonna keep my soul, it was yours to have long ago.” - State Radio, "Keepsake"

27. “Celebrate we will ‘cause life is short but sweet for certain.” - Dave Matthews Band, "Two Step"

28. “It’s always darkest before the dawn.” - Florence + The Machine, "Shake it Out"

29. “There are many things I’d like to say to you but I don’t know how.” - Oasis, "Wonderwall"

30. “You say you want a revolution, well you know we all wanna change the world.” - The Beatles, "Revolution"

31. “God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy.” Billy Currington, "People Are Crazy"

32. “Well my heart is gold, and my hands are cold.” - Halsey, "Gasoline"

33. “I don’t want to be heard, I want to be listened to.” - Twenty One Pilots, "Forest"

34. “Where you invest your love, you invest your life.” - Mumford and Sons, "Awake My Soul"

35. “I think I need a sunrise, I’m tired of the sunset.” - Augustana, "Boston"

36. “All of these lines across my face tell you the story of who I am.” - Brandi Carlile, "The Story"

37. ‘Ready or not, here I come. Where you at? The night is young.” - Bridgit Mendler, "Ready or Not"

38. “In the land of Gods and Monsters, I was an angel.” - Lana Del Rey, "Gods And Monsters"

39. “Turns out not where, but who you’re with that really matters.” - Dave Matthews Band, "Best Of What’s Around"

40. “Know yourself, know your worth.” - Drake, "0 to 100"

41. “I’m little but I’m coming for the crown.” - Lorde, "Still Sane"

42. “Didn’t they tell you I was a savage?” - Rihanna, "Needed Me"

43. “Hands in the air like we don’t care.” - Miley Cyrus, "We Can’t Stop"

44. “I’ma keep running because a winner don’t quit on themselves.” - Beyonce, "Freedom"

Cover Image Credit: https://pixabay.com

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If You've Worked In Retail, You Can And Will Relate To These Struggles

"Why are there so many people here?!"
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April 18th marked my last day of working at Wal-Mart as a cashier. Wal-Mart was my first job and I'm glad that I was given the opportunity to work there. Not only did I gain experience in the workforce, I was able to improve my social skills as well. Just saying "hello" to someone and asking about how their day went can go a long way.

It's safe to say that I've developed great relationships with some of my customers and co-workers as well. I will always be thankful towards Wal-Mart for taking a chance on me when no other job had the decency to call me back. However, as the months passed, I realized that it wasn't the job for me and that I wanted to seek opportunity elsewhere.

During my 7 month tenure I've had many experiences, both good and bad, as well as humorous and frustrating, that I would like to share:

1. Those People that Always Like to Stare At You

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It doesn't matter if I know them or not, I always feel awkward when people just stare at me for NO REASON at all. Especially when little kids stare at you and there's nothing you can do about it. Like honestly, what so interesting about my face. Like could I possibly have my face back? No? Well OK then.

2. When there Are Only Two Lines Open

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If you're the one shopping, it may seem like the worst thing ever to have to wait in a long line. Trust me, it's surely better than having to deal with an avalanche of customers, one after the other. It's almost like you can't ever catch a break. Actually experiencing this first hand has helped me become more patient. I feel like you can't really complain about a line taking too long unless you were the one ringing everyone up.

3. Those "I'D LIKE TO SPEAK TO YOUR MANAGER" Customers

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I think that anyone reading this can depict what this person would look like in their heads. These customers are the worst to deal with because they don't take other people into consideration. I've had to deal with quite a few of them so I feel sorry for anyone that has as well. People like this don't want to hear anything that the cashier has to say, and it's like they just pretend you don't exist until your supervisor comes.

4. Big Carts at Speedy Checkout

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It's so annoying when I'm on one of the "20 items or less" registers, and someone rolls up with a cart full of merchandise. It's like dude, seriously? I swear people know that they definitely have over 20 items, but they don't have a single care in the world.

5. When People Come In Your Line Even though Your Light is Off

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I just look at people then look up at my light just so they can get the message. Some people understand, and I'm grateful for that, but other people just continue to walk down the aisle like they haven't seen a thing. This happened to me one time when I was helping a customer. They had already been in my line before I cut my light off, but imagine my anger when five more carts pull up as well!

6. "Do you think that you could stay for a bit longer?"

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This question always cracked me up whenever one of my managers would ask it. I've been here long enough, what makes you think that I would want to stay any longer? I'm sorry that we're understaffed, but that's none of my business. I'M OUT!

There's a lot more for me to complain about, but those are for another time. Overall though, it was fun while it lasted, but I had to get out of there. I'm still going to shop there like nothing ever happened though!

Cover Image Credit: Clark Young

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