Mental Health & Social Media

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The horrendously sad news about the passing of Sophie Gradon and her partner Aaron Armstrong this month has really got me thinking. The saying ‘you never know what goes on behind closes doors’ really resonates with me surrounding this situation because behind her beautiful smile, despite appearances she suffered, suffering terribly from depression and anxiety.  We’ll never know for sure what was going through Sophie’s mind, or her partners but I can’t help but wonder. Mental Health feels like such a difficult subject, but why? It’s 2018? Why?

When you Google “What is Mental Health?”, the search result displays a meaning which explains it’s “a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being.” I then ask myself, how do we know if we have a good mental health or a bad mental health? I decided to delve further into mental health in the hope of understanding it further and then I thought, well this would make an interesting blog post, so here is it!

Personally, I feel and think my mental health is good. I can easily pick myself back up again when I’m feeling down, I make a conscious effort to look after myself and be positive. Mindset is huge for me and as long as I can eliminate negativity, I’m good. I appreciate not everyone can keep moving forward with themselves and have my mindset.

Everyone has ‘mental health’ and this can be thought of in terms of:

– How we feel about ourselves and the people around us
– Our ability to make and keep friends and relationships
– Our ability to learn from others and to develop psychologically and emotionally.

Being mentally healthy is also about having the strength to overcome the difficulties and challenges we can all face at times in our lives – to have confidence and self-esteem, to be able to take decisions and to believe in ourselves. I was so shocked to learn that around 1 in 10 of all young people may experience a mental health problem or disorder where they may need help from a mental health specialist. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices.

So what’s causing the staggering rise in mental health issues in 2018? I personally think social media plays a huge roll in it. Three billion people, which works out at around 40% of the world’s population, use online social media – and we’re spending an average of two hours every day sharing, liking, tweeting and updating on these platforms. There are not any official stats to be able to conclude that social media does affect our mental health but coming from a generation where social media has ruled my teenage years it’s easy for me to say.

As a teen growing up I was conscious of my looks, my weight, how big my boobs were and it was hard not to compare myself when I was bombarded the media’s perspective of beautiful so God knows what the pressures are like these days since the likes of Kylie Jenner are our teenager’s role models. If I could give my 16-year-old self-advice it would be to just do me, don’t ever compare because we’re all different.

I sometimes think that social media has a superficial aspect to it. We can have 1,000’s of friends on Facebook yet we can feel so lonely and so far away from human contact. I love being able to disconnect myself from my phone to just spend time with the people around me yet at one point when I was a teenager you’d never see me without my phone. Some people I know will beg to differ that now as I do have a close relationship with my phone but knowing I’d be able to take a break from it all when I need it, is satisfying.

I don’t know if we’ll ever get over mental health sigma in our society but I’ll continue to shout about it!

 

*This is a collaborative post.

 

 

 

20 Comments

  • Reply Maisie July 16, 2018 at 7:03 pm

    The statistics on mental health issues and suicide are so heartbreaking. Have you read Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig? It’s a harrowing but amazing read all about the authors personal battle with depression and anxiety. Well worth the read.
    As a person living with depression, I do find social media can go one of two ways, it can enhance my downward spiral or really help to lift me up. It’s definitely a bit of swings and roundabouts that’s for sure xx

    • Reply Alice July 18, 2018 at 9:51 am

      Oh no I’ll have to give it a read! xx

  • Reply Gemma Louise July 16, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    I find social media can be so draining when it comes to mental health, I need to start taking more time away from it and enjoying life. I spend way too much time scrolling through instagram!

    • Reply Alice July 18, 2018 at 9:52 am

      I totally agree!

  • Reply Sarah Chappellx July 16, 2018 at 10:29 pm

    I totally agree – it’s so sad about Sophie and Aaron and the mental health data is shocking and heartbreaking. I have some personal mental health issues and some are due to social media and how draining it can be.
    Sarah X

    • Reply Alice July 18, 2018 at 9:53 am

      I hope you can overcome this x

  • Reply Megan July 18, 2018 at 7:04 am

    I loved this post Alice! Mental health is such a big thing now and everyone seems to be talking about it. However, I HATE talking about how I feel, which is why I stopped going to counselling. It actually made me feel a whole lot worse in myself. I can only ever talk to my boyfriend about how I feel now x

    http://www.itsmeganelizabeth.blogspot.co.uk

    • Reply Alice July 18, 2018 at 9:54 am

      Thanks Megan, I’ so pleased you have your boyfriend to talk to x

  • Reply Prettiful Blog July 18, 2018 at 11:28 am

    Social Media can be such a trigger! It is so easy for people to sit behind an avatar and be mean, it gives people the courage that they wouldn’t have if they were face to face. Its a dangerous place.

    • Reply Alice July 19, 2018 at 8:29 am

      I totally agree!

  • Reply Mel July 18, 2018 at 9:06 pm

    Such a great post.
    I don’t feel that mental health gets talked about as it should do.
    It’s so sad people can’t find any other ways out.

    http://littlemissmelanie.com

    • Reply Alice July 19, 2018 at 8:31 am

      Thanks Mel, I totally agree!

  • Reply Katrina Frances July 19, 2018 at 6:36 am

    I feel like social media does affect my mental health personally, I begin to feel so down about myself when scrolling through instagram and twitter.
    I believe the stigma around talking about mental health won’t end either, the best thing we can do is talk about it!
    Thank you for writing this!

    • Reply Alice July 19, 2018 at 8:32 am

      Thanks Katrina!

  • Reply Kelly-Anne July 22, 2018 at 7:58 pm

    If I’m honest it’s been particularly hard for me at the moment which is why I’ve been taking a break. I think it’s alwaya good to have a break!

    • Reply Alice July 26, 2018 at 8:42 am

      I agree!

  • Reply Sarah July 24, 2018 at 8:00 am

    Social media can be such a life suck, there is a surprisingly amount of really mean people on social media who can drag a person down to their lowest of lows and not even care of the damages they have done. my mental health is never good, i deal with a lot of anxiety which can change my moods in a heartbeat. switching off twitter helps sometimes.,

    • Reply Alice July 26, 2018 at 8:43 am

      I totally agree! I always like to take a break.

  • Reply Sarah Adams August 2, 2018 at 10:26 am

    My heart broke when I heard of Sophie’s death, followed by Aaron’s. I think we all suffer with mental health problems at some point in our lives. I grew up in the no social media/no phone generation and I had the best childhood. There was no comparing yourself to people online, no make-up tutorials etc, however, now I find myself comparing to others all the time, which gets me down. I totally agree with you and think social media plays a huge part in it.

    • Reply Alice August 6, 2018 at 10:17 am

      It was so sad wasn’t it! I totally agree!

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