Social networks provide us all with a “sense of belonging”. You know what I mean. You say something about a funny incident that happened to you and people in your network respond back with a “LOL” or with an anecdote of their own.
You talk about your bitchy boss and voila, everyone wants to share “bitchy or A****** boss” stories. The adage of “misery loves company” really applies well in social networks and it feels good doesn’t it when someone sympathizes to something that we are going through?
And that leads us to the question of popularity. Sooner or later, you are going to begin equating your “popularity” with the number of followers you have, the number of people who engage with you, the “followFriday” recommendations you get every Friday, the “total number of friends” on your FB page, etc. etc.
So to remain popular and to continue feeling “belonged”, guess what? You are going to begin spending more and more and more time on social networks.
You might ask if I’m speaking from personal experience. And I’d have to laugh and say “not at all” but most of you won’t believe me. But no matter!
My point is that “SNS” is bound to happen sooner or later. Because even if you are spending time with people who make you feel good through their positive encouragement and “go girl” (or go guy) backslaps, sooner or later you’re going to ask the following questions:
>> How many sites will I be able to visit today?
>> Damn, I forgot to visit FB today, what’d I miss?
>> Why hasn’t anyone said hello to me?
>> How come I only have 5 “FollowFriday” recommendations?
And then you’ll know you have SNS or Social Networking Stress!
[No, this is not a doom & gloom prediction but a little humorous tongue-in-cheek look at our obsession with social networks currently.]