I think we can all agree: Since Snapchat added emoji to its handy application, the world has basically blown up.
First, it removed the “best friends” list, and everyone breathed a huge sigh of relief. Even though you couldn’t stalk who your significant other or crush was sending photos to, you felt okay with the peace of mind.
You moved on with your happy Snapchat life.
Then, suddenly, emoji appeared next to the names of those on your contact list, sending everyone into a confused state of being. What are these things doing here? What do they mean, and more importantly, are they necessary?
Questions were flying around, and no one really knew the answers until Snapchat posted a useful guide to what each emoji meant. The yellow heart became coveted and the smirking face became a confidence booster. Confusion cleared, but anxiety levels soared.
Teen girls everywhere immediately drove to their loved one’s house to curse them out about the cost of cheating. Best friends broke their heart-shaped necklaces. Chaos erupted, and things caught on fire.
I mean, so I assume.
For the record, let me state I'm a Snapchat user. Why?
Well, I’m still unsure because I do believe it can produce more anxiety than happiness. However, I use my account from time to time, sending funny snaps to friends, or maybe even being bold and sending one to the guy I’m currently chatting up.
I’m a Generation-Y child, and I love social media.
I’ve gotten sucked into the current, but I’ve come up with some solutions to help you (and myself) survive the Snapchat madness.
1. Use Snapchat lightly.
Use it sporadically. Don’t make your social media life all about Snapchat. Spread the love to other applications, like Instagram or Twitter.
It shouldn’t be about the quantity of snaps you get or send in a day; it should be about the quality. Sending a million to that cute guy won't make him answer you any faster. Sit back and relax.
Secondly, make your snaps light-hearted. There is no reason or need to get into an argument over a social media application.
Also, there is not much sense in having a full-out conversation through pictures. Texting is designed for quick conversing.
It may seem very 20th century, but try making a phone call to speak to someone, especially if the conversation is important. Use Snapchat for the funny moments, like to draw a funny picture or capture your dog doing a handstand.
Avoid the stress by making the application optional and playful.
2. Avoid having a Snapchat relationship.
You love getting snaps from your cute boyfriend or girlfriend (and that makes sense). But don’t rely on it as your number one form of communication.
The minute you or your significant other snaps someone else and the order of best friends changes, you feel anxious. It’s normal, but completely unnecessary.
Trust your loved one isn’t doing anything shady. But if you have serious concerns, have that conversation face-to-face. You owe it to yourself to not rely so heavily on a phone application.
3. Ignore the emoji.
For a little while, I was so focused on which emoji was next to which contact’s name. I became focused on remaining on certain people’s best friends list.
I waited to see the warm smiley face pop up, and was ecstatic when the guy I was hooking up with had the yellow heart. But then, I realized all of it meant nothing.
Social media isn’t everything, and the application changes emoji so frequently, it’s hard to even keep track.
Your relationships should not be dictated by social media. You deserve better.
4. Keep the peace.
Long story short, live life without emoji. You know who your closest friends are, and you know your friendship is more meaningful than any emoji could ever represent. You know your relationship with your loved one is more complex than any basic heart.
Ignore them, and close the app. If you find that hard to do, simply log out.
No one will blame you for pressing pause on the social media button. In fact, it’s something we all need to do.
Staying connected 24/7 keeps you on high alert, increasing your stress levels and desire to stay up-to-date with every piece of breaking information.
Take a step back. Snaps only last 10 seconds, anyway.