Issues with Communication
Texting and social media are wonderful! They allow us to save time in communicating with each other, to maintain friendships and relationships that might have ended due to distance or other life changes, and to form new relationships with people we might not otherwise have met. But there are also challenges. We are more accustomed to texting and instant messaging than talking in person. Because texting and social media often rely on abbreviations and shortened wording, miscommunications and misinterpretations of tone are frequent. Without the use of emojis or other exclamations, anxieties and uncertainties can arise regarding the actual intentions of a person’s message. While young adults rely heavily on technology as a form of communication, it can be more challenging for them to enter the workplace where face-to-face communication is the norm.
Additionally, in a world where social media reigns and we receive constant, polished updates about those around us, expectations (e.g., standards of attractiveness and standards of accomplishment) have changed and become increasingly difficult to meet. We see what others are doing (in the pictures they choose to post), how they look (filters/photoshop), and how great their lives appear to be. While we might be happy for them, this can also cause us to reflect on our own lives and feel we are not measuring up. Self-esteem begins to suffer and anxiety and depression may increase. If a post fails to accrue a certain number of likes, we worry that something is wrong with us or that others are angry with us.
Issues with Coping
We are currently living in a society of instant gratification. We stream movies, television shows, and music and are able to enjoy them immediately. We buy products online and they are delivered in a day or two. Convenience is the name of the game, but does come at a cost. We have gotten so used to the ease of living this way, that when we are faced with a problem that cannot be solved with a simple Google-search, our levels of frustration may skyrocket at an unreasonable rate. Young adults are excellent at multi-tasking, but today’s emphasis on technology can make it difficult to slow down and be in the moment.