Online gaming is a really popular activity that can be a healthy and enjoyable pastime.
There are many benefits to online gaming. It can be a way of connecting with others, making friends online and reducing isolation.
Gaming can be fun and a good distraction from current negative news and social media reports. It doesn’t have to be competitive, with many games encouraging teamwork. It can help develop problem solving skills and give us a sense of achievement.
However, for a small number of us, gaming can have a negative impact on mental health if we are not paying attention to how it affects us.
I’ve been told I might be suffering from body dysmorphia and I can see the signs, but despite that I seem to be getting worse? It’s gone to the point where I tear up when I see a recent picture of myself..and I do want to start loving myself but it’s just really hard to. I’ve been thinking of making an appointment, but I’m really scared of face to face interaction. I’m scared of my anxiety since it’s really hard for me to talk to strangers especially when I have to bring up my concerns.. Any recommendations on what I should do?
Sounds like it’s been really tough for you recently, but you did the right thing to reach out! At different points throughout life, body image can become more, or less important. But there’s no doubt that being unhappy with your physical body can have a big impact on your mental health.
Time spent online and social media are commonly viewed as the root causes of any problem that young people face.
As the pandemic went on, we became more reliant on technology for a sense of connectedness. For the majority of us, work and education relied on a stable internet connection. Digital communication with friends, family, teachers, colleagues and classmates was never more important for us to have access to.
However, when we ask young people how long they spend online, they often refer to this amount as bad or negative. We’re all guilty of mindless scrolling at times, but does that make it bad?
We live in a competitive world, where comparison is everywhere. It’s often present in school or college, on the sports field or in relation to social status.
There can be a focus on ‘being the best’ when we are ranked and compared to those around us.
At school or in college there is often competition, with exams designed to assess our academic ability. Ratings can be compared to every other person our age in Ireland.
Sports can come with pressure and a focus on winning. Even in non-competitive activities, such as the gym, we are encouraged to try to get a ‘personal best’. We might focus on doing more weights or improving our time, in competition with ourselves to be our best.
Online and on social media, we can usually see how many followers/friends, likes, or comments another person receives. We often compare our social media stats to those of others. Looking at posts and wondering why some got more support than others can become a habit. What stories are we telling ourselves about success and failure?
Our Instagram feeds are filled with snaps of ‘happy couples’ and #relationshipgoals. There’s a mountain of advice on how not to be single. So, you’d be forgiven for thinking everyone in the world is in a relationship except you.
However, that’s not the case. According to the most recent Irish Census, 41% of people over 15 years-old are single. Yet still, we can feel the pressure to ‘couple up’ and this can be challenging.