Are you jealous of everyone you know? If so, it might be time to take a break from Facebook.
Scrolling through photos of other people’s vacations, joyful family moments and awesome nights out may be a threat to your sense of personal happiness, say a team of German researchers in a new study titled “Envy on Facebook: A hidden threat to users’ life satisfaction?"
And if you are the type of person who lurks on Facebook without contributing much yourself, chances are your sense of life satisfaction is even lower, the researchers found.
The study was conducted by social scientists at Humboldt University in Berlin and Darmstadt’s Technical University.
In a survey of 357 people — mostly German university students — respondents were initially hesitant to admit to feeling jealous while looking at Facebook. But when asked what makes “other people” feel bad about looking at Facebook, nearly 1 in 3 respondents cited jealousy.
Additionally, 1 in 5 respondents said their last jealous feeling occurred while looking at the social networking site.
Those surveyed said they are most likely to be jealous of other people’s travel and leisure time (think vacation photos), social interactions (how many “likes” a friend’s picture gets, or how many birthday wishes she receives), and simply the sense that other people are just generally happier in their lives.