Just as you suspected, the more time you spend online, the worse it could be for you.
It’s so easy to spend time scrolling through a feed. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter- they all have something to offer, and often times a few minutes spent posting your thoughts, reading an article or sharing the latest political meme can offer a well deserved moment of relaxation.
But if you find yourself spending hours there, it might not be a good thing.
A study done at the University of Pennsylvania has found that the more time spent ‘socializing’ online, the more lonely and depressed people often feel.
“Here’s the bottom line,” said author and psychologist Melissa G. Hunt. “Using less social media than you normally would leads to significant decreases in both depression and loneliness. These effects are particularly pronounced for folks who were more depressed when they came into the study.”
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Researchers ran a simple study. They had participants complete a survey about their mood and well-being. Their social media use was analyzed and monitored. Participants were then placed into two groups: one that maintained their regular level of time on social media, and a second that limited the time to 10 minutes per platform, per day.
The results were striking. Spending less time on social media was found to offer fewer opportunities to compare ourselves to others, which is good Hunt says.
“When you’re not busy getting sucked into clickbait social media, you’re actually spending more time on things that are more likely to make you feel better about your life,” she says.
Her best tips? Put your phone down and be with the people that matter. Done.