Karen Saukas is a graduate from the University of Michigan with a
degree in Communication Studies and Psychology. She lives in Grand Rapids,
MI with her husband and beagle Brutus. In her spare time she loves to read,
travel, and spend time out on the water.
As our culture has advanced, technology has added convenience, but also stress as well. Are all your friends getting engaged or having kids and you are still living the single life? Social media can be useful to stay in touch with friends and family far away, but it can also become a negative tool that fuels comparison and low self-esteem.
Stress from comparing your body, habits, job, or family life adds up if you visit social media sites everyday like most young women do. This stress doesn’t only affect your mind, it shows up on your face and body as well. Worry isn’t flattering on anyone. If you constantly feel not good enough in one or multiple areas of your life this never ending stress puts your adrenal glands into overdrive. Adrenal glands are want give you the fight or flee reaction. If you are always fighting what you are, the glands eventually go kaput. This slows down your metabolism and causes your body even more stress since it is worn down. How many times have you rationalized eating a doughnut or pint of ice cream because you have had a hard day or are stressed about exams? Stress eating affects so many people and can cause you to put on the pounds. Not only can you gain weight, but you can get wrinkles as well. You may think you are too young to get signs of advanced aging, but the truth is wrinkles and crows feet are appearing on women younger than ever before.
Remember that stress comes from many factors in your life. School, work, relationships… and your online habits may be adding more stress than you think. Next time you log on try to stay aware of how these sites actually make you feel. If you start to feel jealous, annoyed, or disappointed in any way it may be time to shut down your screen. With everything you deal with on a daily basis you don’t need one more thing dragging you down. Remind yourself that everyone is positing their best selves online. No one posts pictures of how bloated they are after a huge meal or their face free of makeup. Live in reality, not online, and you may find that you stress less which causes a ripple of positivity in your life.