Social Media as Validation

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I was recently thinking about this fairly new phenomena of social media, and how it quite possibly feeds an inherent need for validation within us.

“Liked” posts, or added comments may lead to increased feelings of self-worth for the poster, while un-friending and unsubscribing can result in feelings of rejection.

From a psychological stand-point (my background, after all), it’s something  that didn’t exist — at least not to this level –15 years or so ago.  I didn’t have to coach clients who seemed to place their own value on a number of page visits or comment likes (real scenario, by the way).

I find it all very interesting, how easy it can be to tie an opinion of self to what essentially is a single click of a mouse, or seeming lack thereof.

We all want to be found valid.  We each want to feel heard and understood.  We want to matter.  It’s a common thread among people who express feelings of loneliness and isolation.  

I dunno.  I guess if I consider social media an opportunity to connect, and to support, like in “real” life, there’s an effort to be made to make sure my expressions and intentions are clear.

And also like real life, it’s best for me to remember that my own self-worth has absolutely nothing to do with anyone’s opinion of me.  It lies within my mere existence.  I am worthy, because I am.

I think I’ll try to be more intentional in all my communications, and perhaps a bit more explicit.  Beyond single-clicking and one word answers.

I want you to feel validated.  Because you matter.  We all do.

 

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