Exposing the Truth about Social Media
Social media exists to make money.
The main reason social media exists is to make money. We must keep that in mind. That’s why the companies created the platforms, and that’s why businesses + influencers post content. This isn’t necessarily a good or bad thing, it’s just the reality.
Just like every other business in the world, including RD. Businesses exist so the business owners can make money.
Social media however is unique, in that its design is to get as much attention as possible. With enough attention, money can achieved through advertising for the platforms, and through selling products / services for the content creators. A content creator can range from your favorite personal trainer posting workouts to Nike selling shoes.
However, social media platforms like Instagram and Tik Tok in particular are incredible at capturing the attention of consumers. In fact, we’ve never seen something as captivating, maybe with the exception of pornography.
Instagram, Tik Tok, and pornography all do one thing in common. They reward your brain with dopamine. Now, it’s not that these are the only things that activate your dopamine receptors. Eating a piece of chocolate, or getting some sun, or kissing your girlfriend, all do the same thing.
The difference is that with social media is the constant surge. Essentially it overloads your dopamine receptors, with a new piece of content, followed by another one, followed by another one.
If you had the discipline to look at 2 or 3 photos on Instagram, or watch 1 or 2 Tik Toks, or even just watch 1 porn video, you wouldn’t really suffer. The issue with social media that most people have is they continue to look for that dopamine hit. And the platforms throw new pieces of content at you so quickly, playing into the brains natural desire for the next hit.
In the natural world, getting a dopamine hit was a reward. You get a hit of dopamine from the feeling iof accomplishment after a successful hunt, sexual opportunity, or even a bit of sunlight.
Social media plays into this reward system. Except when you get a “reward” when you didn’t do anything, or you get too much of this at once, you feel drained. This is why hours on social media tends to result in a dependency and lack of energy.
The thing that gives you the hit of dopamine is also the thing that is draining you. Social media, for most people, creates a problem that it then seemingly fixes, only to get worse and worse. Just like a drug.
Producer vs Consumer Mindset
The problem with social media, is only really a problem for the consumers. If you’re a consistent consumer, as in you primarily use social media to consume, then you’re being used by it. You’re giving away your attention and / or money.
It’s fine to spend your attention and money on things that are worthwhile. After all, you’re going to spend your attention and money somewhere regardless.
The issue is that if you’re stuck on the screen all day, you’ll end up throwing away your attention for nothing. Just for tons of hits of dopamine over and over and over again.
This is the consumer mindset. Watch, scroll, laugh, watch, scroll, laugh, bored, watch, scroll, laugh, bored again. Until you realize you’ve wasted 2 hours of your day doing nothing.
The producer mindset is the opposite of this.
The producer mindset is one of creating. A producer who opens up a social media app is doing so to produce. If you’re a business owner, that means posting about your business, advertising, or engaging with your audience.
Even in a social aspect, you can either be a producer or a consumer. Most people just consume what their friends or celebrities are doing. A producer is going to open the app and then post whatever they’re doing in their life.
While many people are 100% a consumers, most follow the 80/20 rule, meaning they consume 80% of the time and produce 20% of the time.
Let’s switch this. Let’s produce 80% of the time, and consume 20%. That means you’re opening the app to post something, and then you might look at a picture / video or two. But that’s it, then you get off. That’s how to use social media properly.
Pimp or be pimped
Social media is clear example of the producer vs consumer mindset. Or simply put, pimp or be pimped. Are you using the platform? Or letting it use you?
Sure, if you’re posting content you might consume a bit as well. But there’s a massive difference between that and being a slave to the platform. Most people are slaves to social media, specifically Instagram and Tik Tok.
If you don’t plan on producing content, it’s best just to delete these all together. They’re designed to capture as much of your attention as possible. That’s how you get pimped.
You can decide to take back your power and pimp yourself (produce content), or just get off the apps and not play the game. Either is fine, just don’t be the one who gets pimped.
When it comes to social media, use it wisely or don’t use it at all.