How many times have you scrolled through your newsfeed in the past few hours?
If you’re like most guys, then you’ve probably already checked your Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat multiple times today.
Social media has quickly become a central part of our lives. Without it, keeping in touch with friends and family members would be a lot more challenging.
Unfortunately for most of us, that’s not the only reason we use it…
In this article, you’ll learn 5 common ways that social media hurts your self-confidence, magnifies your insecurities, and increases your anxiety on a daily basis.
#1: Thirst for Validation
Imagine this: you open your phone and post a photo to Instagram.
Think about what happens next…
Do you continue your day as normal? Or do you sit around waiting to hear your phone vibrate with a new notification? Be honest with yourself.
The harsh truth is that most of us are just looking for validation. We just want a bunch of people to “like” our post. It makes us feel important. It makes us feel popular.
You love hearing that notification come in. You love getting other people’s attention. You love the feeling of approval that comes with each and every “like” your new post receives.
This is natural. It’s simple human nature. The problem is that social media allows you to “indulge” this instinct with incredible ease. And then you get addicted. You “need” to feel this validation every so often to feel good about yourself…
You begin to rely on “likes” in order to be confident.
#2: Pedestalization of Women
The same way that men use social media to get validation, women do too.
This means there are hordes of women out there who are always trying to post photos that will get them the most “likes” possible.
And let’s be honest here: there’s a lot of extremely attractive women engaging in this behavior. It’s easy to open up Instagram and waste an hour of your time staring at hot fitness chicks who turn you on.
After you browse through a certain amount of these images, something interesting happens: You begin to place attractive women on a “pedestal”.
It’s shockingly similar to the negative effects of porn addiction. They’re not naked – and they’re not having sex – but you’re still browsing through hundreds of carefully curated and meticulously edited photos.
Rather than seeing women as real humans to interact with, you begin to see them as pixels on a screen… for your viewing pleasure only… but never to actually talk to or date.
No, because you don’t feel “good enough” for them now.
#3: Pedestalization of Other Men
Do you follow your favorite athletes, movie stars, or entrepreneurs on social media?
Whether it’s Dan Blizerian playing poker with a bunch of naked chicks – or Tai Lopez talking about his new Lamborghini – these images can have a deep impact on your self-esteem.
When you see extremely successful men, you can’t help but compare yourself.
All the six-pack abs, bikini babes, and private jets can fuck with your head. They can make you feel like a complete and utter failure. And they can make you feel angry or jealous towards these men.
This can cripple your confidence faster than you realize.
You start to paint a picture in your head of what you “need” in order to be successful: If you don’t have a private jet… if you don’t have 3 smoking hot girls on each arm… if you don’t have a shredded body… then you aren’t “enough”.
This is all bullshit, of course. But social media can trick you into believing it.
*open phone*check Facebook*check Instagram*check Snapchat*close phone*
Does that sound familiar?
When you’re bored, or nervous, checking your phone gives you something to do.
But if you’re constantly browsing through photos, sending messages, or thinking about what to post next, you can never truly be engaged with what you’re doing.
Your mind will always be wandering. You’ll never be able to hang out with friends, watch a movie, or go on a date without stressing about checking your phone…
And this will prevent you from being a confident, grounded man.
Confidence comes with an absence of conscious thought. Confidence comes when you engage fully with what you’re doing and act without thinking or second-guessing yourself.
But, if you’re addicted to social media, then it will be nearly impossible to achieve a fully confident, present state of mind. You will always have that “urge” to see the latest updates.
Read More: How to Build Confidence Through Meditation
Answer me this: What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Be honest bro… do you open your phone and check Facebook? Or do you have a morning routine to keep yourself focused and motivated?
Most guys start on the wrong foot. Most guys get caught in the newsfeed scroll from the moment they open their eyes.
Your first few moments of the day dictate your energy levels and productivity for the rest of the day. If you start with a cold shower, some meditation, and reviewing your main tasks for the day, you’ll be well on your way to crushing it and taking massive action…
But if you start by spending 20 minutes in bed, staring at your phone? You’re already doomed. You’re going to feel exhausted just getting out of bed and walking to the bathroom.
Laziness breeds more laziness. And action breeds more action.
Getting in the habit of constantly checking your social media updates can only breed laziness. And this can only distract you from getting shit done and achieving your goals.
How to Take Back Your Self-Confidence
Look – I’m not telling you to delete your all your social media accounts…
As I said, they are a central part of our culture. And there are many benefits to using them to network with other people.
However, you must be aware of their potential downside. You must be aware of their ability to cripple your self-confidence. That’s why I wanted to conclude this article with some concrete steps you can take to overcome the negative side effects of social media:
- Try and catch yourself mindlessly scrolling through your newsfeed or browsing photos
- When you catch yourself, don’t beat yourself up, just move on and do something else
- Choose 2 specific times per day to log on and scroll through your newsfeed
- Don’t look at social media outside of these times
- Disable push notifications on your phone (this will help A LOT)
These steps will help prevent you from becoming addicted to validation, putting other people on a pedestal, and ruining your ability to stay focused and present.
This way, you can maintain your social media activity and enjoy the benefits, without sacrificing your self-esteem in the process.