Mental Illness

Is being popular bad for your mental health?

The answer appears to be ‘yes’ according to a study by Narr et al. (2017).  They find that:

Close friendship strength in midadolescence predicted relative increases in self-worth and decreases in anxiety and depressive symptoms by early adulthood. Affiliation preference by the broader peer group, in contrast, predicted higher social anxiety by early adulthood. Results are interpreted as suggesting that adolescents who prioritize forming close friendships are better situated to manage key social developmental tasks going forward than adolescents who prioritize attaining preference with many others in their peer milieu.

In short, cultivating close friendships are a way towards less anxiety and more social support.  Attempts to be ‘popular’ by increasing the likelihood of more but weaker friendship and pursing friendships for the sake of social status is bad for mental health as the quest for social status is likely to produce anxiety.  A press release for the article can be found here.




1 Comment

  1. In my opinion, being way too popular eats up the Privacy of a Person. Apart from that, it can cause the person to feel way more anxious than ever before.
    Popularity has it’s own, Pros and Cons and that is the reason why we should try to keep Anxiety under control. I have written an article about that. You can find it on my blog.

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