Social Media

How Wanting 'Likes' on Social Media Is Killing Our Capacity for Actual Joy (Infographic)

A new study has found that, for many, being “liked” on social media is more important than being liked in reality, which can lead to odd behavior and an inability to enjoy life in the moment.

The online survey of more than 1,600 participants concluded that we have become social media “trophy hunters” -- with 58 percent of respondents claiming that attempting to hone the perfect post has prevented them from enjoying life. The survey was conducted by behaviorists and best-selling authors Joseph Grenny and David Maxfield.

Perhaps worst of all is that 79 percent of respondents reported witnessing parents neglect events in the lives of their children in the name of a good share. One mother even described re-disciplining her 3-year-old son after he threw a tantrum in order to film it for Instagram.

Related: The Case Against Sharing Your Epic Vacation Photos on Social Media

As a result of social media, participants also admitted to neglecting their loved ones, driving recklessly, being humiliated while snapping selfies in public, and posting things that they would never otherwise say in real life.

“’Likes' are a low-effort way to produce a counterfeit feeling of social well-being that takes more effort to achieve in the real world,” Grenny concluded. “This study is a warning that we are beginning to value virtual pleasure hits more than authentic happiness."

However, the duo does have advice for those hoping to quell their compulsions. They advise occasionally disconnecting from devices altogether, for instance, as well as limiting overall post quantities. “If you post more than once a day,” they say, “you probably have a problem.”

Related: We Need to Stop Blaming Social Media For Stressing Us Out

Check out more stats and tips in the infographic below:

Click to Enlarge+

Society's New Addiction: Getting A

Related: iPhone Separation Anxiety Is an Actual Problem, Study Finds

Edition: December 2016

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