Social media can have a profound impact on us. Sometimes it can be a positive influence, but when it comes to how we view our bodies, social media can be very harmful. Here’s some great information from our Registered Social Worker Katarina Schmidt.
Body Image & Social Media
Social media is one of our main ways to connect to others and the world around us. However, have you ever noticed that you are comparing your body to others you see in social media posts?
Or, have you noticed you are feeling badly about how your body looks after scrolling through Instagram or other platforms? If so, you are not alone.
Upon reading a meta-analysis (research combining and analyzing all available research at the time) on the impacts social media use has on body image showed that there does seem to be a correlation between social media use and body image concerns (Saiphoo & Vahedi, 2017). This means consumers of social media can experience feeling unhappy with their body due to seeing picture-perfect, edited, unrealistic photos and videos of others on a regular basis.
If you are feeling this way, there is one simple thing you can try to mitigate this!
Try to follow a variety of people on your social media.
Follow people who exist in bodies different than yours, people from different cultures and backgrounds, people of different genders, and people with various disabilities.
Doing this can help you see a variety of diverse bodies and help to break away from seeing only one body type.
It can also help to remind you that your body is okay the way it is, and that a variety of bodies exist outside of the extremely polished bodies you may be used to seeing online.
Then, you can begin to unfollow the accounts that make you feel badly about yourself and enjoy the positive impacts of all these new accounts you follow.
- Katarina Schmidt, MSW, RSW
Resource: Saiphoo, A. N., & Vahedi, Z. (2019). A meta-analytic review of the relationship between social media use and body image disturbance. Computers in human behavior, 101, 259-275.
Thanks, Kat! Social media is a powerful force.
Kat has her Masters degree and is a Registered Social Worker. She specializes in the following areas:
– Panic Attacks
– Self Confidence
– Self Esteem
– Self Compassion
– Complex Trauma
– Bipolar Disorder
– ADHD (Attention-Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder)
– ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder)
– FASD (Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders)
– Mental Health Issues
– Communication Issues
– And More!
Kat offers Individual sessions for Adults.
Cheers to managing our social media so that it has a positive impact on us.