Likes' less likely to affect the self-esteem of people with purpose
on 23 September 2020
Synaptic transmission

Do you use or need Facebook or other social media platforms to give you an emotional boost and keep the lid on your emotions? If you do, this could be worth a read because you may well be on the wrong pathway to emotional stability .  .  .

The more you like yourself, the less FB likes matter!

This research delved into the world of social media likes. If you've been a FB member for any length of time, you'll likely be aware of the many ways people seek the fb like to validate themselves. Of course, this does not apply to all users. But to find out if it affects you, pause and take note of your emotions (bodily feelings/sensations) and thoughts; do you feel an adrenaline rush? It is not uncommon for many people who seek therapy, to not like themselves, for some it even amounts to feelings of hatred towards themselves. According to this research, this could indicate that your life lacks purpose, meaning and/or direction. You might even ask where your life is taking you? Hypnotherapy, apart from dealing with any issue you are facing, e.g. depression, anxiety, insomnia or just a bad habit, its ultimate aim, is to give your life some sense of purpose and meaning! Directions are often a collateral effect of those two components.

This doesn't mean you have to give up on social media, it just means you are no longer reliant on it to give your that 'life's fun' boost. When you truly like yourself, warts n all, you no longer pay attention to what others think of you. Mostly you don't even know what they think anyway! You are very often happy to help others and just as happy not to. Basically, that means that your happiness is not contingent on the acceptance, approval and validation of others. For sure, if you get it, it's nice; it's just no longer a necessity for self-validation! This is what is often referred to as a higher level of self-esteem, as opposed to a lower level. Many people have low-level self-esteem (this is different from low or no self-esteem). People in this low-level self-esteem band do well as long as they get social acceptance, approval, acknowledgement. But without it, they begin to flag, have self-doubts, second guess others intentions. In short, to keep it all together they need this social acceptance, together with their long time ally - EGO - to make life work. People with higher levels of self-esteem (nestled just below self-actualisation), just don't need social acceptance to feel good about themselves. For sure, if someone pays you a compliment or sings your praises, it's nice; it's just no longer necessary to have a fulfilling life of purpose!

Relating this to hypnosis _therapy is simple. Hypnosis allows you to discover the areas of your brain, and what we term mind, and develop them towards having a greater awareness of life. Essentially it makes you more emotionally and cognitively functional. Oh, and by the way, life gets to feel a whole lot better too!

Hypnotherapy stands out as one of the most effective strategic life management methods there is, especially in its ability to promote clear thinking and good states of mental wellness. The behaviours that make life challenging are often a result of too much stress, too little or poor quality sleep and too little by way of mental and emotional clarity! So, to get or take back control of your mind and your life, it makes perfect sense to use a methodology that addresses the subconscious brain's role in perpetuating negative, vague and ambiguous states of mind. Hypnosis helps us to create calm relaxing states of mind that make life work better! If you would like to address any concerns you have in this direction, or, if you just want the ability to make your life feel better, then why not make an appointment for a Free Consultation? Hypnosis gives you the ability to have a good life! 

My objective is to help people understand how and why we become illogically trapped into emotional experiences that may actually be happening but for reasons, we may never have imagined! If you want to know more about Hypnotherapy, why not make an appointment for a Free Consultation? 

For more information on the Free Consultation - Go Here Or, to book your Free Consultation today, you can do so here

The Research:

How many likes did I get? The rush of self-esteem that comes with the ubiquitous thumbs-up has more people asking that question, as Facebook and other social media sites offer more ways for friends to endorse photos and posts.

But one group seems immune to that rush: people with a sense of purpose.

In the first study on the effects of purpose in the online world, Cornell researchers have found that having a sense of purpose limits how reactive people are to positive feedback on social media.

"We found that having a sense of purpose allowed people to navigate virtual feedback with more rigidity and persistence. With a sense of purpose, they're not so malleable to the number of likes they receive," said Anthony Burrow, co-author of the study and assistant professor of human development. "Purposeful people noticed the positive feedback, but did not rely on it to feel good about themselves."

Burrow and other researchers define a sense of purpose as ongoing motivation that is self-directed, oriented toward the future and beneficial to others. People with a strong sense of purpose tend to agree with such statements as "To me, all the things I do are worthwhile" and "I have lots of reasons for living."

While it is nice to receive compliments, online or otherwise, it may not be a good thing to base one's self-esteem on them, Burrow said.

"Otherwise, on days when you receive only a few likes, you'll feel worse. Your self-esteem would be contingent on what other people say and think," he said. "Over time that's not healthy, that's not adaptive. You want to show up with rigidity: 'I know who I am and I feel good about that.'"

The study, "How many likes did I get?: Purpose moderates links between positive social media feedback and self-esteem," appeared Sept. 14 in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

The researchers hypothesize that because purposeful people have the ability to see themselves in the future and act in ways that help them achieve their goals, they are able to inhibit impulsive responses to perceived rewards, such that they prefer larger downstream incentives to smaller immediate ones, said co-author Nicolette Rainone '16.

The researchers conducted two experiments to get these results.

In the first, they recruited nearly 250 active Facebook users from around the country. They measured the participants' self-esteem and sense of purpose and asked how many likes they typically got on photos they posted.

Facebook users who reported getting more likes on average also reported greater self-esteem. But those with a high level of purpose showed no change in self-esteem, no matter how many likes they got. "That is, receiving more likes only corresponded with greater self-esteem for those who had lower levels of purpose," Burrow said.

In the second study, the researchers asked about 100 Cornell students to take a selfie and post it to a mock social media site, "Faces of the Ivies." The students were told that their photo had received a high, low or average number of likes.

Getting a high number of likes boosted self-esteem -- but, again, only for students who had less purpose. "In fact, those higher in purpose showed no elevation in self-esteem, even when they were told they received a high number of likes," Burrow said.

This is the first study to show purpose lowers reactivity to positive events. Most research to date on purpose has looked at it as a buffer against negative events such as stress.

Without a sense of purpose, one can act against one's own interests even when something positive happens, said Rainone, who is a program assistant for the Program for Research on Youth Development and Engagement at Cornell's Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research. "For example, if I'm studying for a big exam and get a good score on a practice test, that can make me think, 'Oh, I really don't need to study.' And that may ultimately decrease my final score because I stopped persisting," she said. "Having a purpose keeps you emotionally steady which is essential for successful academic and work performance." 

Story Source:

Materials provided by Cornell University. Originally written by Susan Kelley. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Journal Reference:

  1. Anthony L. Burrow, Nicolette Rainone. How many likes did I get?: Purpose moderates links between positive social media feedback and self-esteem. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 2016; DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2016.09.005

Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "'Likes' less likely to affect the self-esteem of people with a purpose." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 September 2016. <>.