Society

Study: 'Facebook Blues' A Real Phenomenon

| by Denise Recalde

Researchers are saying using too much Facebook during the holiday season -- when a user is likely to see too many "perfect" holiday photos and families -- is more likely to significantly dampen your mood than cheer you up.

A University of Copenhagen study concluded that an unbridled use of social media can deepen feelings of envy.

It especially warns against visiting and "lurking" on social media sites without engaging with anyone. The study recommends frequent breaks from browsing the sites, BBC reports. 

The researchers divided a group of more than 1,000 mostly female participants into two groups -- a group that continued using social media as usual, as the rest took a break from the networking sites, The Telegraph reports. 

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In their released findings, the study's authors found that "regular use of social networking such as Facebook can negatively affect your emotional well-being and satisfaction with life."    

The conductors of the study spoke of jealousy and a "deterioration of mood" from spending an inordinate amount of time finding out the social media angle of the lives of friends and acquaintances, stirred by "unrealistic social comparisons."

If this paints a picture of spending many long hours at the computer, depressing yourself over the snippets and posts of posters, the research recommends an alternate way of coping with the "Social Media Blues."

Actively connecting with fellow social media users and conversing with them leads to a happier experience of the medium, the Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking journal study recommends. 

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This offers a significantly more positive experience than passively spending too much time "lurking" on the social networking sites without engaging with people.

The study further recommended taking a break from social media altogether for a week as a long-term mood booster.

Sources: BBC, The Telegraph / Photo credit: Daniel Biskup via Business Insider

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