Study accuses Facebook & co: ”Millennials are victims of social perfectionism”

Millennials, those born more or less from the beginning of the Eighties to the end of the Nineties, have fully experienced the IT revolution, especially the web, and according to a survey published in the “Psychologycal Bullettinsare” they are more likely than other generations to focus on perfectionism. Often at the price of mental health.

The survey examined data from over 40,000 US, Canadian and British college students from the late 1980s to last year. Each of them has compiled a scale of multidimensional perfectionism, a test capable of identifying precisely this type of attitudes.
Three were the types of profiles put in the viewfinder: self-directed perfectionism, an irrational desire to reach the highest possible condition; oriented towards others; victim of excessive expectations from society, or from those around us.


The results explain that the most recent generations of students have scored higher results from each form of perfectionism than any other generation before them.
Between 1989 and 2016 the first profile increased by 10%, the second by 16% and the last one, which interprets the momentum to perfectionism as an expectation of others, by 33%.
All this is not without a price: according to the authors of the survey, these tendencies bring with them links to psychological problems such as depression, anxiety and suicidal instincts.

The reasons are many, one of them is to be seen in social networks like Facebook and Instagram. These platforms have made it very easy to deal with other people and above all, triggered a kind of unbalanced and reciprocal competition, based on what we see as we know does not always exactly reflect real life. Rather the image that “friends” intend to give of themselves.
The tendency to competition is certainly not the prerogative of the platform, but is innate to the human being already in preschool age.

Millennials therefore have a huge amount of “metrics” available to judge their existence, certainly more than their parents. “Like”, “follower” and “friends” are some of them.
It is difficult to understand how we can get out of it, or at least try to take a step back from this vicious circle.
The first step is to focus on other qualities of one’s personality (diligence, flexibility, perseverance), rather than looking at perfection as a one-dimensional dimension.
In general, it would be necessary to shift attention to our one goals and to our own desires, not to set them or establish them according to those of other people.


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