Apart from rigorous revision sessions, the timetable for my last semester of university was packed with career talks, CV writing skills and industry networking seminars. I had attended most of them because I knew the transition from student to working adult would not be a simple one. Surprisingly one of the biggest takeaways I had from these sessions was the importance of LinkedIn.
“LinkedIn is a great way to stay connected with your peers even after graduation. It is also important to see what others are doing and take reference and lessons from their career path!”
“I got my first internship through LinkedIn in the second year of university and have been working with them every summer break. A couple of months before my final exams, I was offered a full-time role as long as I secured a second-upper and it took a huge weight off my shoulders for my finals.”
These were just some of the raving reviews I got on the social media platform.
After these sessions, it did not take much more convincing for me to finally create my LinkedIn profile. As soon as I added my university and prior job experiences, I was bombarded with all the professional profiles of friends and acquaintances from work and university. They say “curiosity kills the cat” but in this case, after trudging and scrolling through the suggest profiles and their seemingly endless list of fancy internships and certifications, curiosity instead turned into insecurity and envy.
Like Instagram and Facebook, LinkedIn is increasingly becoming yet another social media platform that highlights only the accomplishments of our lives. In today’s hustle culture, the only way to measure success seems to be based on how busy a person is – making self-worth seem quantifiable. Combining this prevalence of hustle culture and the premium of career success, young working professionals may find LinkedIn even more anxiety-inducing than other social media platforms.
In this article, we would like to share some tips on managing insecurities and anxieties derived from LinkedIn.
Tip 1: Reduce LinkedIn Usage
Just like any other toxicity in your life, the ultimate goal is to get rid of it. The same concept can be applied to LinkedIn. Ultimately, LinkedIn is another social media platform and no doubt it can be extremely useful when job hunting or even staying up to date with industry news, there are actually alternatives to satisfying those purposes.
Instead of going cold turkey, limit your access to the platform. Perhaps deleting the app on your phone and only viewing LinkedIn on your computer to avoid idle surfing. You may also choose to turn off all notifications from the platform (emails and app notifications) to prevent yourself from curiously entering the platform.
Tip 2: Understand Your Purpose & Tailor Your Feed
There are multiple reasons why people use LinkedIn: connect with like-minded individuals, job hunt, connect with old friends or even for recruitment purposes. We have to understand what purpose does LinkedIn serve in our lives and does its characteristics of a social media platform skew our original motives? Curate your feed with content meant for your original purpose to be on LinkedIn. Alternatively, follow inspiring industry leaders, news outlets (e.g. Harvard Business Review) and thought leaders (Simon Sinek, Nassim Nicholas Taleb) while unfollowing posts or people that tempt self-comparison.
Tip 3: Understanding That LinkedIn is Meant for “Flexing”
The nature of LinkedIn is that you are meant to show all your accomplishments and primarily share only the good events that has happened in your life. In other words, just like most other social media platforms, posts are curated to show the glamourous side of their lives. Hence, it is important that with every post you see on LinkedIn, to take it with a pinch of salt. Moreover, whatever that is happening in other people’s lives is out of your control and perhaps it is more important to internalize and understand your feelings of insecurity to find the root cause. Only then will you be able to gradually work towards a better you.
Ultimately, LinkedIn in a great place for you to improve yourself, learn from others and keep up to date with what your peers are up to. It should be regarded as a tool for ease and the betterment of you and not become a platform you are a servant to. Always remember to take care of yourself and be mindful of how you are feeling. If need be, nip the problem in the bud.