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Facebook Makes You Sad

Apparently, the more time you spend on Facebook the unhappier you will be. According to this research,

Those who have used Facebook longer agreed more that others were happier, and agreed less that life is fair, and those spending more time on Facebook each week agreed more that others were happier and had better lives. Furthermore, those that included more people whom they did not personally know as their Facebook “friends” agreed more that others had better lives.”

And also,

An earlier study conducted last year by the American Academy of Pediatrics also found that children and teenagers can develop “Facebook Depression” when being overwhelmed with positive status updates and photos of happy friends.

It all seems to be down to the image we project on Facebook. We’re all shiny, happy people, apparently:

Why would this be? A few possibilities occur to me:

1. We like to play pretend, and portray a good image of ourselves.

2. Being honest is altogether too dangerous in some circles. “I’m fine.”

3. Despite all the trend towards openness encouraged on social networks (watch out if Facebook changes the privacy controls again), some of us are careful about posting negative things, even if we honestly believe or think them.

4. We’re prone to a ‘grass is always greener on the other side’ mentality, due to a lurking pre-existent sense of dissatisfaction with our lives.

Of course, none of this is true in the church …