Is Social Media Destroying Our Happiness?

Even those who appear to have it all. We're all working towards the same goal - 'to be happy'.

With so much hype today around quick fixes for happiness, I much prefer the definition of happiness described by Drew Barrymore. She explains - "Happiness is not this yellow, blithe, floating thing. It’s something that takes a tremendous amount of work. There’s a warrior aspect to being happy. You’ve got to fight for it," she continued. "And only when you’ve got that kind of earned happiness is it really good."

Drew Barrymore
Drew Barrymore

Today, it's easy to falsely believe that everyone around us has it all together. That they're happy while you're battling to make sense of your life.

Social media has become our worst friend when it comes to this distortion. Scrolling through your newsfeed of the endless smiling faces, adventure-filled travels and beautiful meals that portray everyone, except you, as the happiest they could be. But is this the reality?

If you use social media, you'll know that these publicly shared life glimpses are in fact the result of an average of five plus pictures and some creative editing. So why do we strive to portray these perfect lives? Is this all part of our fight for happiness? The 'fake it until you make it' technique?

Sure, it can definitely be argued that the sharing of happiness increases our own. So long as the perception of others happiness is not to our detriment. The awareness that behind the obtainment of real happiness is in fact the fight for it.

As Barrymore explains "earned happiness" is the real stuff that we're wanting. There's no short cuts and there's definitely no exemption from going through the tough times. But it's the will to continue your own personal fight that will get you through. Like many others who study the pursuit of happiness, I also don't believe happiness is a destination, but there's no argument that the feeling of happiness is a great place to be.


So the million dollar question "how can we be happy?" We fight for it. We get to know ourselves, what we do and don't like, we apply this knowledge to make considered life decisions and we learn how to change the things we don't like and accept those we can't change. And, as we grow and continue to change, our environment also changes and we then must continue to evaluate our lives and these fundamental principles to pursue our "fight for happiness".

You can read the full article about Drew Barrymore and her fight for happiness here.

Written by Positive Psychology Author Amba Brown, author of Finding Your Path Books.

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