Social media: As bad as Crack…(Part 2)
by Holly Varni
September 5, 2013

Social media concept








Not addicted to Pinterest? Good for you. But can you say the same thing about Facebook?

Think about it.

Be honest.

Really honest. Come on.

How many times a day do you check Facebook for “new stories” posted?

Do you sneak breaks at work to check your page to see what others have posted? Is your lunchtime spent scrolling down the daily dish and gossip? Does your heart do a little skip in anticipation over what others will say about the photo you posted of yourself in that cute, sexy top?

You’re not alone in your addiction. There are 1.1 billion (yes, the big “B) users on Facebook. That averages to 1 out of every 6 human beings on Earth are “liking,” “sharing,” “commenting” and “posting” their life.

People don’t call others anymore to announce big news, they post it. Easy. Efficient. Fast. In one push of the button, you can notify nearly everyone you know or ever met that you’re getting married, pregnant, in love, going to college, passed your driver’s test, leaving for vacation, coming back from vacation, got a new dog and buried your old one.

Facebook is the modern day version of eaves dropping. The old saying, “people would rather peek in others windows, rather than their own,” rings true. It’s reality TV on our phone and computer, made personal.

We know these “friends,” they aren’t strangers. But thanks to Facebook, we learn more information and personal details about their lives. Every time you log on, a personal tour of a friend’s daily life, children, moods, interests, activities and opinions is displayed.

Want to know more about your nieces? Click on their Facebook page. You get a photo album of them posing in outfits as if they were on the runway, girlfriends hugging them and making faces, boyfriends you didn’t even know existed and more importantly, an intimate look into how they conduct themselves in the real world.

Have a friend that’s trying to lose weight and get in shape? You get the privilege of tagging along their fitness journey, receiving every inspiration quote, recipe and see the before and after pictures.

I was slow in understanding the dynamics in Facebook. It took me awhile to understand that you’re supposed to “Like” what people say or their picture. It’s silently communicating back to them, “I agree.” “I like that.” “Cute!” “Aw, I’m here for you.” “You go Girl!” “Thinking about you.” “You’re funny.” That tiny thumbs-up carries a lot of message and support.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against Facebook. On the contrary, it provides me information I wouldn’t have gotten otherwise. There are pictures of twin girls that I have been following since they were a few minutes old! I was able to see what they looked like along with the doctors, nurses and family as they entered the world. Now, as they reach milestones such as turning one month and then two, I get to see how they change. Facebook is a timesaver and lifesaver for their exhausted parents. There is no way they could send out updates and pictures to everyone interested.

If you’re an introvert, Facebook is a dream come true. You get to be a part of peoples lives without really being a part of people’s lives. If you’re an extrovert, Facebook is a dream come true. You get to be revealing and outgoing as you typically would.

Somehow that figure of 1 billion doesn’t seem so outrageous. Humans seek connection and community, and Facebook provides both.

I might not be as addicted to Facebook like I am to Pinterest, but I do enjoy the sneak peek into others lives. Baby pictures, smiling kids at sporting events, drawings my niece created, sunsets over a lake, inspirational quotes, pictures of a party last night, sarcastic cartoons….I would miss it all if I were not privy to these postings.

Let me reiterate by stating, I’m not addicted to checking the latest stories. I simply consider myself a very interested friend. 🙂