Social media has garnered a lot of flak for getting in the way of organic, human relationships in recent years.
Because people were so attached to their gadgets, connecting outside the screen became less of a priority. In fact, a study on Thrive Global reveals that more than 50% of people reported social media as having a negative impact on their relationships. It’s easy to say that we should all just ditch Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter altogether. But with the ongoing health crisis keeping everyone at home, social media is back in the spotlight — only this time, as a force for good.
These are some trying times that we live in right now, as we’re all forced to adapt and connect with our loved ones in new ways — from family dinners over Zoom, to dates on FaceTime. In this regard, social media has provided a lifeline for everyone in self-isolation. Moreover, our “new normal” has caused many of us to reconsider what really matters to us, which is another reason we’re all longing to strengthen our ties more than ever.
So how exactly is the global health crisis making social media more “social”?
The benefits of exercise go beyond improving strength and physique. According to doctor Katharina Star, group workouts, in particular, can provide great support and motivation. With gyms closing their doors temporarily, people are taking their workouts to social media. On Instagram Live, Olympian Shawn Johnson, model Olivia Culpo, and countless other fitness influencers are sharing their workouts and encouraging their followers to get active. Apart from being free to participate in, following a live workout routine can make users feel like they’re back in the gym with friends. If you’re a health or fitness business owner, you should consider conducting your own live workouts as a way of increasing your social media presence, too.
Virtual Hangouts Via Video Games
Video games are proving to be one of the most social (and fun) digital activities people are doing during self-isolation. After all, it’s a great way to spend time with friends and do activities online. It’s no surprise that newly launched games like Call of Duty: Warzone reached 15 million players in just four days following its release. Apart from this hit title, the gaming world still has much more to offer in helping people stay connected. In fact, even friendship-themed games are on the rise. The Best Friend Formula by Gala Bingo is a simple but interactive game that explores “the science of best friends.” Plus, it reminds players that sometimes all you need in life is a few close friends. Indeed, these games provide the comfort that our friends are just a click away—even if it means hanging out on a Minecraft or Animal Crossing server.
Social media has always been a platform for artists to share their work. But with a lot more free time at home, many creatives are making the most out of their indoor-living situations. For instance, TIME Magazine shared how some photographers have started sharing their recreations of classic paintings — be it Grant Wood’s “American Gothic” or works by Edward Hopper. Meanwhile, on the more performance end of things, Gen Z social media users have been devoting their time to practicing new TikTok dances with their friends. And on another note, people have also been sharing their baking creations online — comparing sourdough bread and exchanging recipes with each other. All in all, the health crisis has pushed people to look for new skills to learn and share with their social media followers.