When you scroll through your IG feed, do you ever think about how it might be affecting your friendships IRL? What we’re trying to say is, can your online friendships end up enhancing or creating new friendships in real life?
A lot of the time, it feels pretty mindless to scroll through Instagram – in a good way, of course. That dopamine hit can keep you going for a good while if you manage to avoid all the ads put in your way.
Interestingly, a study was done recently on the topic of Instagram friendships vs. real life and how each affected the other.
It indicated that those who were typically more reserved or shy experienced a more positive effect from having IG friendships, and this translated into real life.
The study showed that otherwise, shy people enjoyed using the app, and claimed that it increased their social confidence to interact more with other Instagram users.
It also spurred them on to form new friendships outside of the virtual world, too. As you can see, this study had a bigger impact on people who would typically consider themselves to be introverted.
They claimed that something like an Instagram post served as an excellent way to break the ice or build a bridge to friendship.
A medium like this naturally sparked conversation and commentary, which could also be the beginning of an offline friendship if things progressed well, too.
On the same side of the coin, it’s also important to acknowledge that social media has its downsides, too.
From addiction and misinformation to online bullying, and the ‘fear of missing out,’ there are a lot of things that can have a negative effect on social media users.
Instagram is an immensely popular social media website that has taken the internet by storm over the past decade.
As this study indicates, it appears that while there are some disadvantages to using Instagram, for introverts, at least, there are some social advantages that can affect their approach to real-life social situations, too.
If Instagram can offer this gateway to more social interactions in real life for people who are usually shy and reserved, then it may help to reduce the isolated landscape of social media and promote connectivity instead.