My holiday is coming to an end and I’ve been ruminating on the social media detox I did a few months back and why I didn’t land up publishing all of the notes I wrote a long the way. I guess some of the journals were too personal to publish.
But while we’re on the subject of what might be too personal to publish, I’ll tell you a secret…
I haven’t always liked myself. In photos. In life. I rank people and I rank myself. I’m aspiring to be the amalgamation of a variety of people I admire and in the process I’m sitting at the alter of my perfect ideal and punishing myself for being, well, me.
Thanks Facebook and Instagram for allowing people to make a collage of the best moments of their lives- the ugliness is swept under the rug of appropriateness (it’s too real for digital consumption). That’s what the news is for right! So on the one extreme, we’re consuming apocalyptic news stories and then, on the other, photos of our friends and influencers globe trotting, fine dining, insert more extraordinary activities on social media.
I’m so used to consuming polar opposites that it makes my somewhat ordinary day-to-day routines and life seem completely unacceptable. There’s that little voice telling me that the girl on Instagram doing yoga poses on mountain ledges is a more evolved version of humanity than I am. She’s out in nature, being hot and flexible- every photo tagged with an inspirational quote to the applause of a thousand+ hearts. And that’s just a stranger… my friends do social media well too. I can’t remember the last time I travelled, but some of my friends seem to have had five overseas trips in-between. Comparison right? Stop? But social media makes it so easy to compare.
I work with a colleague who doesn’t have any social media profiles besides LinkedIn, which is a requirement of his job. When he said it, we all stared at him… “I don’t want to see all the photos and relate to my friends via social media” he said. And I couldn’t help but wonder what it must feel like. None of the social clutter, daily disruption.
The conclusion I’ve come to is that as someone who has a few anxieties and insecurities that I need to work on – limiting my social media use and disconnecting from it entirely at points is a healthy means to an end.