J introduced me to the Hidden Brain podcast last summer. Do you listen to it? It's always really interesting and deep and they're not afraid to ask big questions or tackle big topics. Last week they had an episode that was particularly engaging and really hit home for me. Its title: Schadenfacebook. As you might have guessed, it was all about the effects of Facebook and social media on our over all happiness and well-being.
The entire episode and all of the interviews were completely captivating and I found myself nodding along in agreement throughout. I promise I won't give anything away, but one segment toward the end completely crystallized this weird feeling I've had ever since we got back from Switzerland. While I was in Switzerland, I felt like I was missing out on so much here in the US. In fact, I felt that way so strongly that it actually diminished my ability to be present there. But then I got back to the US and realized that everything I thought I was missing out on here was actually just happening online anyway. I have been trying for months to formulate a post about this, but it's surprisingly hard to articulate. What I was seeing from Switzerland on Facebook and social media wasn't any different from what I'm seeing from here. In other words, none of these things I thought I could be a part of if I were here are actually real. Our lives have become based online to such a degree that we feel isolated in our real, non-digital lives. It's at once fascinating and horrendous, and no wonder that so many of us feel lonely and unhappy.
I have to say that I'm infinitely happier since I left Facebook last fall. I go on occasionally to post on my Swiss Lark page or check on a particular friend, but that's it. Sometimes I find it fun to scroll a bit and see what's going on with people I know. But usually, I find it all so overwhelming that I get off of there as quickly as possible. I'm so much more peaceful and content for it. Are you still on Facebook? To what degree? Definitely give Schadenfacebook (Ep. 68) a listen. I'm so curious to hear what you think. Do you agree with the guests and findings? Does it apply to your own life and levels of fulfillment and happiness? Hurry back and let me know. (Speaking of online engagement;)
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