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The Influence of Social Media on Self-Esteem

In today's digital age, social media has become an important part of our lives, transforming the way we communicate, share information, and connect with others. It has changed the way we interact with others and how we shape our relationships. As we dive into the world of social media we will be examining benefits and downsides, as well as its impact on individual well-being.


This Chart shows how teens are more affected by social media in their self esteem

In today's world, with the rise of social media, the impact of social comparison on self-esteem has become increasingly evident. As we scroll through our feeds, we are constantly exposed to carefully curated images of other people's lives, showcasing their achievements, travels, and seemingly perfect appearances. It's natural for us to compare ourselves to these idealized versions of others. When we see others achieving great things or looking flawless, it's easy to question our own worth and feel like we don't measure up. This constant exposure to comparison can have a detrimental effect on our self-esteem, as we unconsciously strive to meet those high standards set by others.

Social Comparison

Cognitive Processes

Social media can have a significant influence on self-esteem. Through social media, individuals can constantly compare themselves to others leading to low self-worth. The curated nature of social media can create unrealistic standards of beauty, success, and happiness, causing people to question their own lives and self-image. The constant need for likes, comments, and validation also contributes to a reliance on external validation for self-esteem, rather than focusing on self-acceptance and self-worth. Teens are more likely to experience negative effects on self-esteem from social media due to these several factors. Emotionally, social media can have both positive and negative effects. On one hand, it allows us to connect with others, share achievements, and receive support. This can enhance our sense of belonging and happiness. On the other hand, social media can also provoke feelings of jealousy and loneliness. The pressure to constantly present a "perfect" image can be emotionally draining and contribute to anxiety or depression. In terms of moral development, social media can expose us to diverse perspectives and important social issues. It can be a platform for activism and raising awareness and an example of this right now is sharing awareness of what is going on in Palestine. However, it also has its challenges. Some people hide behind anonymity and engage in cyberbullying or spreading harmful content.

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4. Focus on offline connections: Prioritize spending quality time with family, friends, and loved ones in real life. Engaging in meaningful face-to-face interactions can boost self-esteem and help create a balanced perspective.5. Engage in activities that build self-esteem: Pursue hobbies, exercise, engage in creative outlets, and set personal goals. Building a sense of accomplishment and confidence offline can help counteract any negative impact social media may have on your self-esteem.

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3. Practice self-compassion: Remind yourself that what you see on social media is often a highlight reel, not the full picture of someone's life. Treat yourself with kindness, understanding, and acceptance. Celebrate your own achievements and uniqueness.

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1. Limit your social media usage: Spending excessive time on social media can contribute to feelings of inadequacy and comparison. Set boundaries for yourself and allocate specific times to engage with social media, allowing yourself to focus on other activities that boost your self-esteem.2. Cultivate a positive and supportive social media environment: Surround yourself with accounts and people who promote positivity, self-love, and authenticity. Unfollow or mute accounts that make you feel bad about yourself and actively seek out uplifting content.

Mitigating Negative Effects

In today's digital age, social media holds significant power in shaping our self-perception, emotional well-being, and moral development. It has the potential to bring both positive and negative impacts into our lives. On one hand, social media offers a platform for self-expression, connection, and inspiration. It allows us to share our experiences, celebrate achievements, and create meaningful connections with others. We can use it to uplift and support one another, spreading positivity and kindness.


Laplante , S. (2023, August 23). How social media can crush your self-esteem. The Conversation. https://theconversation.com/how-social-media-can-crush-your-self-esteem-174009 Auld, S. (2023, September 25). Social media and low self-esteem. ACC Blog. https://www.acc.edu.au/blog/social-media-low-self-esteem/ Johnson, H. (2020, September 28). Social media and Self Esteem. Medium. https://medium.com/@haleyjohnson_41726/social-media-and-self-esteem-9a59a600c57d

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