Is The Internet Making Us (Me) Paranoid? | Life Love and Hiccups: Is The Internet Making Us (Me) Paranoid?

Monday, 17 July 2017

Is The Internet Making Us (Me) Paranoid?

Pin It

Social Media and the Internet has A LOT to answer for.

Aside from all the insecurities that are born from comparing our bodies, homes, families and lives to those of all the others that we see on our phones and computer screens, there is also the added bonus of paranoia to contend with too.

Social media and blogging unleashes ALL kinds of uninvited ring-ins into my already overcrowded paranoid mind and I have to admit I am more than a little curious to know if you ever feel this way too?

Apparently, this overwhelm and paranoia we feel are both perfectly justifiable signs of the times that we live given that we spend so much time talking to each other online rather than in person.

Once upon a time, back in the olden days (kill me now cause I said it again), it was very black and white when it came to deciding if your paranoia was justified or not.

Case in point;

You approach a group of friends who are huddled up close with heads together, clearly discussing something or someone.

One of two things would typically happen....

1. They will pause for a moment whilst you join them, briefly give you the background and then dive back into the discussion.

Or...

2. They notice you approaching and immediately stop speaking and so you then oblige them with a response that includes an awkward laugh and an even more awkward comment along the lines of "ok girls, you can stop talking about me now". They in turn respond with something along the lines of an intense interest in the current state of their cuticles or they simply stare up at the sky and ponder the possibility of snow falling in Summer in your beachside suburb..

Case solved.

They were talking about me.

These days, things are much harder to figure out thanks to the subtle passive aggressiveness and vacant jibing that the internet enables.

In fact the internet is a breeding ground for judgement and paranoia, and there is no place more virile than Facebook and The Blogosphere.

So what the hell am I vagueing on about right now?

Hmmm, it kind of goes like this...

You read a cryptic status update that a friend writes on Facebook about how someone has pissed her off and you respond with an appropriate dose of empathy in the form of a comment on that post... but then your comment is met with silence.

Not a single word in response, not even a like to acknowledge your comment.

Nothing.

Nada..

And so (if you are me), you commence hyperventilating as you mentally recount your last ten conversations and interactions with this person to pinpoint exactly what it was that you did that caused her to be so mad at you.

Now don't expect reason to help you out here.

Nope, Reason doesn't even think of coming to the party and pointing out the fact she could be talking about any of the 1852 people she has engaged with in the past month.

Nah ah, there is no room for reason at this party because Paranoia has arrived people and Paranoia has started a big old paranoia orgy in your head and consequently you have already donned your own shackles and you are now far too busy writing your 98 page apology letter... for something you don't know even know what or if you have or haven't done.

But....Paranoia says you did so you must have right?

Gah!!!

Then there's that blog post a fellow blogger writes about blah blah and how she really dislikes it when people yaya yada, or how she thinks that people who yada yada make her feel blah blah...

You get the gist right?

Of course you do, because that post was written about you right?!

Oh wait, oh sweets... you mean you didn't know she was talking about you?

Bless, you mean you actually thought it could have been about any of the other eleventy billion faceless people she could have been referring too?

THAT my dear friend is the point that reason leaves the building and insecurity and paranoia claim squatters rights.

Now short of leaving a comment on that Cryptic Facebook status or opinion post asking the author if it is indeed you she was talking about and in the process of doing so risk making yourself look like a utter narcissistic looney... there is not much else you can do about it.

I guess you could spend the next few days in self imposed exile doing some deep and meaningful soul searching as you question the probability of it being you or not and whether you can you live with yourself it were indeed you she was talking about.

Or... you could attempt a modern day passive aggressive poke in the shoulder by writing your own cryptic Facebook / Twitter / Instagram update / blog post and leave everyone else wondering who you are really talking about too before you realise that you have now completely lost the plot and surrender yourself and your wounded ego to your local Social Media rapid detox and rehabilitation facility.

Then again, you could just get over yourself, turn off the computer for a while and go and get a life.

Who am I to judge?

Whatever works for you I say.

Do you ever overthink what you read online?
Ever felt like the internet and social media is making you slightly paranoid?