A study published earlier this year, on November 1st, by a team of researchers at the University of Copenhagen show that people who use Facebook intensively are more susceptible to depression and a wide range of other negative emotions. Even though most people already believed this, the scientists have now provided sufficient evidence that backs their claim.
Over the course of 2015, the researchers conducted the study on approximately 1,100 participants in Denmark. The subjects were divided into two groups. One consisted of users who would log on every day, while the other was completely cut off from the newsfeed for a whole week.
When the researchers analyzed data pulled from these groups, they concluded that taking a break from social media, especially Facebook, drastically improves the users’ satisfaction with themselves and brings with it an array of positive emotions. Especially for envious users who use the platform to spy on more successful peers. Apart from envious personalities, the study also focused on analyzing behavioral patterns of passive users, and Facebook-addicted individuals.
In order to determine which users are more prone to experience envy towards more successful individuals, the researchers put together a set of questions specifically designed to reveal how they react to their peers’ happiness. Furthermore, the researchers sorted passive users out by assessing how often they post photos, status updates, browse newsfeeds, visit friends’ profiles, and comment on posts.
One week later, when the results came in, the team of researchers was able to conclude that those who took time off from using Facebook experienced improved emotional health and turned out to be happier and more pleased with themselves, as opposed to the individuals who spent their time on the social media platform as usual.
As a result, the researchers say that one way to improve an individual’s emotional stability is to completely stop using Facebook. At the same time, the authors know well enough that such a drastic solution may not be appreciated by all. Instead, for users who experience envy towards more successful people, a good idea would be to stop browsing their profiles, say the researchers.
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