Feeling blue? Always angry that your friends are having a better time without you? Finding it difficult to concent…? A study by the Happiness Research Institute has found all of your issues can be solved if you switch off from social media.
The study of 1,095 Danish people divided into two groups – half of continued using Facebook while the other half stopped for one week. Facebook was chosen as the study field because it has most diverse age groups using the platform.
After a week, the Facebook-less people said they were more satisfied with their lives, with 88 per cent of them describing themselves as “happy” compared with 81 per cent from the Facebook-engaged group. The Facebook-less people felt they were more present in the moment (18 per cent).
Some 84 per cent said they appreciated their lives compared with 75 per cent in the other group, and only 12 per cent described themselves as dissatisfied, compared with 20 per cent among those who continued using Facebook.
Meik Wiking, CEO of Denmark-based Happiness Research Institute, told Denmark publication The Local:
“Facebook distorts our perception of reality and of what other people’s lives really look like. We take in to account how we’re doing in life through comparisons to everyone else, and since most people only post positive things on Facebook, that gives us a very biased perception of reality.
“If we are constantly exposed to great news, we risk evaluating our own lives as less good. There can also be positive benefits from Facebook and social media, but I think the real thing to always be aware of is the affect it has on our perception of reality.
“This constant flow of great news we see on Facebook only represents the top 10 per cent of things that happen to other people. It shouldn’t be used as the background for evaluating our own lives.”
B&T has reached out to Facebook for a comment on the study.