How do I assist college students keep related in the course of the pandemic?
Whereas teenagers typically spend an excessive amount of time on social media, expertise has additionally been a useful gizmo for staying in contact. Right here’s one thing I wrote lately in regards to the subject for Character Lab as a Tip of the Week:
Most individuals can be higher off quitting social media.
That’s what I believed. So 5 years in the past, for the sake of my very own happiness, I made a decision to get off social media for good. After a decade as a constant consumer, I mentioned goodbye to my Fb, Instagram, and Snapchat accounts.
Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Concurrently, my three finest associates and I needed to transfer. As soon as inseparable, we have been now scattered throughout the nation. I used to be dwelling in a brand new state, unable to satisfy individuals, and loneliness started sinking in.
That’s once I began texting and utilizing Zoom to speak to my finest associates day-after-day. At a time when it was exhausting to search out silver linings, I used to be so grateful for digital media, which helped all of us battle the isolation.
I’m not alone in counting on expertise as a lifeline. Many adolescents say they’re on social media nearly continually. This all-consuming use of social media is problematic, particularly when it encourages teenagers to fret in regards to the issues they lack.
However in the course of the pandemic, my colleagues and I realized in a examine of over 700 adolescents that social media helped some youngsters respect what they have. In our examine, we discovered that gratitude and counting on social media for significant conversations with associates went hand in hand. What gratitude didn’t predict was the overall time on social media.
In different phrases, the period of time spent on social media isn’t the one factor that issues. So does how youngsters use it.
Don’t assume teenagers’ use of social media is at all times unhealthy or superficial. Banning it totally cuts off a possible avenue for communication that the majority of their associates are utilizing, and adolescence is a time in life when connecting with friends is crucial.
Do encourage younger individuals to replicate on their very own values when deciding the way to use social media. Ask: “When does it draw out the most effective in you? How can it convey you nearer to your pals?” And discuss in regards to the significance of relationships—that are important to happiness at any age.