The other day I came across a video about the powers of adobe Photoshop. I have always known that Photoshop is powerful, however this video really puts in perspective how edited and altered media can potentially be nowadays. Click here to watch the video.
If you think about it – it’s pretty scary how much social media and technology have grown and impacted the way we think, live and behave. Twenty years ago, would you take a picture as a keepsake or a picture to instagram and tweet to the world? Twenty years ago would you be comparing yourself to an unattainable, photo shopped image or a unedited model? Twenty years ago would you be finding your directions from a paper map or just plugging your destination into your iPhone and letting it direct you? The number of times I have heard my mom say “if only iPads were around when you were younger you would of been constantly entertained”. That is definitely true. I know that if I was able to play games or watch cartoons on the plane when I was younger I would of definitely done so, instead of asking my parents how much longer we had left, every.. five.. minutes. So yes – there are many pro’s of social media and technology, but as always, there are also some cons.
I personally love Facebook. It allows me to stay and feel connected with my family and friends who are far away. Social media allows us to connect. Connections with others is an important feeling that everyone needs and desires. But then again, I feel like it is so easy to compare your life to other’s based on what people choose to share on social media. It is also easy to forget that someone’s social media presence can be totally different to their actual reality. I think the line between sharing something and showing off is starting to blur. Think about it – how often do you post something with the intention to share or the intention to, in a sense, show off? Lately I have been making a conscious effort to share stuff on social media for the right reasons, in order to make sure I am not subconsciously looking for some instant validation. Seeking validation is the wrong way to use social media. So you post a new photo, and no one “likes” it.. don’t let yourself make crazy assumptions based on that fact. It is so incredibly easy to do this, but I think checking in on yourself and making sure you are sharing something for the right reasons definitely helps.
Facebook is basically an adobe-photo-shopped version of people’s lives. You can “crop out” that day you spent crying over a breakup, or the day you literally spent eating your feelings. We always have the option to share photos and statuses. And more often than not, the things we choose to share are the more positive, happiest aspects of our life. We post photos of us at concerts, parties, weddings, birthdays, etc.. not at the moments where we are struggling or upset. If someone takes a photo, you smile. It doesn’t necessarily mean you feel happy – it could be easily be a forced smile. Photos can lie. Even just looking through my own facebook photos I remember certain things. Such as my junior prom. To others I am sure I look very happy and in love with my then-boyfriend, but I remember feeling self conscious and upset because we had a stupid little fight hours before the photos were taken. So try not to assume you know the real story behind every photo and status. This can even be related to celebrities. Just because we read about what they are up to on social media and gossip sites, doesn’t mean we are seeing the full picture. It’s easy to feel like you know a celebrity simply because you follow their twitter, instagram, youtube, facebook, you name it! But in reality – you don’t know them on a real level, at all.
Like I said at the beginning of this post, I think social media is great. Just as long as you don’t use it to self validate or make comparisons. Think about your life in the bigger picture. You don’t need anyone’s approval or validation to appreciate all the great things you have going for you, remember that!