Alvan's digital garden

Social Media VS Friendships and Jealousness

Hey, dear Reader!

Again, I’m gonna start by describing what I’m doing right now - it is 1:52AM and I’m at my uncle’s, writing this on my phone, using an app called Simple markdown (add link). It is not the best, but it was ~2mb at F-Droid and just works.

Okay, let’s start with my most recent thought.

If you’ve been following my blog recently, you prolly know I’ve deleted Instagram and Facebook almost for a month now, and I’m much happy this way. This post will be about the reasons.

Sorry for that guys. I fell asleep and now I’m continuing this at 5:15PM, on my PC.

First one is, you prolly guessed it, all the addictive side of this. Reels, stories, memes and other videos, couple of random people arguing on some topic, etc. These all are carefully engineered “entertainment” sources that gives you that dopamine drip, and gets you addicted to them. My friend, Misir got a nice paragraph about this in his post (2nd paragraph).

What we are seeking is rather feeling of accomplishment and a small does of dopamine when we start consuming. And those low effort contents does provide that with no issue, and in a sense they do explicitly exploit our such desires. Take a look at from the perspective of a vivid YouTube Shorts, TikTok or whatever platform you enjoy killing your time off consumer. You start watching a video, 10 to 15 seconds and it’s done, you’ll get small dose of accomplishment feeling / or dopamine as a reward for finishing off something - a short video that didn’t added that much to what you already had. The provided reward is not that much though, but that’s the great thing for those platforms, the reward you got is not big enough to make you satisfied to stop consuming them, but small enough to encourage you to get more. And voila, You just got hooked in a ridiculous circle!

Also, if you usually produce some content on these platforms, there is another source - the number of views/likes. Likes in particular, they used to indicate how many people, well, liked the photo/post, but nowadays they’ve became a way to control “The Algorithm”. I personally use them to tell “The Algo” that, “I would love to see more of this type of post, please give me more!”. You see, this is unhealthy, and certainly not sustainable at all! Nowadays likes on posts mean almost nothing but view count. The real people that really liked the post will comment on it. They’ll put some dark hearts or idk, any other genz emojis too. But wait, it gets worst. After discovering personal blogs and communities, I’m feeling like comments in social media platforms are loosing their meanings too.

“Well, we all knew this!” - you can tell. “It is just a source of entertainment. No one should be expected to be productive all day!”. I know. All I’m telling is, there is much better sources for entertainment and wasting time.

Anyways, enough about first reason.

Second and more difficult part to overcome is being jealous. Maybe “jealous” is not the right word for this feeling. I’ll explain in a bit and please let me know if you know nice term for this. I’ll also use this post to dump my thoughts and maybe make my mind a bit structured, so, I might find a solution for this later. Also, I think I’ve written on this topic in one of my older status updates, it will be fun to visit that and compare how my thoughts have evolved :D.

This is the real part, huh. I’m trying to make my mind clear and choose right words to write, but I’m having a bit of hard time!

So, the thing is, very deep down in me, there is this jealous and controlling man. Very few people know this and some of them discovered this themselves. Maybe not, lol. Maybe I’m just assuming they know, but they probably do. Whatever. I’ll now put example cases for all of these, and we’ll see how it goes.

First, the jealousness. I’ve discovered this part of me at first semester of university. We got very close with a friend and for the first time, my friend had non-mutual friends/close relatives. This was unusual for me, as up until that time, it was just classmate friendships, and there was no such “problem”. And ofc, I was following him on Instagram, and seeing his stories, hanging out with those guys, was making me uncomfortable. I was wondering why he hasn’t told me he is with those guys and maybe I’m not as “important”? Or, sometimes there were some meetups, that I wasn’t invited/involved. Those and several other occasions were making me uncomfortable too.

These all were very much weird and hard for me to handle. Also, wanted to note that, on all of these occasions, I was trying to keep my jealousness to myself only, but it probably leaked sometimes. This whole situation now seems ridiculous to me. Anyways, later I understood this is not the way to think and everyone is an individual, we all got/need personal spaces and idk, what should a free man have? We all deserve those. So I started working on this issue, and now I can tell I’ve come a loong way. Now I’m more sane 😃.

One might ask “What does all this have to do with Instagram usage?”. The answer is, deleting Instagram helped me to overcome these feelings. Now I didn’t know what anyone is up to, and this helped me while I was training myself on “state of being not aware”. But I was still asking direct questions to learn. For this, I just decided to - simply - not ask, lol. Apparently you can just not do the thing.

Trying to not ask helped a lot on this issue and I can finally tell that I’m relatively good at controlling my feelings. This sounds all good, but now another issue raises. As I’m attentive of my (hopefully) past behavior and know that I got a problem on this matter, I become unsure about where is the line and question my behavior always. I mean, what amount of being interested is okay? For example, let’s say one friend is taking long to respond, or just doesn’t answer for an evening. Is it okay to ask where’ve you been?

As I told, I’ve been training myself to control my feelings, and it might get out of control. Now I’m worried if my friendships are getting colder! They probably don’t, but anyways, I ask this question too, to myself.

This is where I need you, dear reader (+me in future)! If you know answers, or have a take on this topic, please share your thoughts, I’d much appreciate these, and thanks in advance! 👍

Now I’m writing all these, I’m facing myself in my most honest form, I feel like this should happen naturally. If you are curious, just ask. If they decide to talk about something to you, they’ll talk. Maybe we shouldn’t be curious altogether? But note that, this happens only when I’m using Instagram! (I mean previously it was my ordinary state, but after I worked on myself, it comes back when I use Instagram). I don’t know, when I see frames from friends’ activity, my subconscious reaction is: feeling kind of jealous. Man, I hate this! Just yesterday I had this feeling again and it reminded me of my past days and feelings, and it was horrible! So, fuck Instagram, I guess? It has weird effect on me.

Ah, just remembered another case! There is a girl that we are good friends with, and I love talking to her. Again, I struggle on deciding the placement of line. I don’t want to seem creepy, but probably degrees of friendship varies between sides, so the line placement should be relatively conservative here. Anyways, it is the same issue. I want to seem/behave friendly and close, but sometimes mistakenly invade private spaces. That is all.

Yess! This feels nice. I’ve wanted to write on this topic for a long time! Now it is all out there and public, I’m no longer ashamed of my feelings, instead, being transparent and aware of my problem, is, in itself, nice step towards nice feelings!

This is also exact reason of me not setting up analytics for this blog, and disabling “read receipts” on WhatsApp. Having less things to worry about / be aware of is nice feeling!

Haha! People I’ve been talking about in this post will probably read this and I hope this won’t make things weird!

So! This is all I wanted to talk today. The purpose of this post is being milestone. I want to come back on this after couple of years and see how I’ve changed, hopefully, towards better.

Thanks a lot for reading up until here, I appreciate it a lot! If you want to further discuss, you can easily contact me.

Now, as always, I’ll put some music recommendations that I’ve been listening these days :^)

Bye! 👋