Connect Not Compare | Bringing The "Social" Back To Social Media
Allow me to set an all-too-common scene for you.
I’m sitting on my couch doing my nightly scroll through my phone. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter - the works. Things are good. I’m loving all of the inspiring quotes, having a good laugh, sharing memes with my bestie, and the next thing I know I see it.
It’s a post of a girl I graduated high school with buying a beautiful first home with her husband. It’s a before-and-after of a remarkable weight loss journey. It’s my neighbor posting about all of the success and friendship she’s found in her MLM. It’s an outfit I just know would never work on my body.
And suddenly my nightly scroll isn’t just about quotes and memes, it has turned into a gross trap of negative feelings and comparison. In a matter of seconds, my involvement in social media has become about how I am NOT enough and every single Kristen/Becca/Heather/MaryBeth on the planet is “better than me”
And you bet your bottom dollar this pattern is repeated again and again over the course of seconds that add up to literal hours in my day! It’s a pattern that persists in my life and in the life of so many of the women I love and admire. And it’s a pattern I’m so tired of simply because my goal in real life has never once been to spend time comparing myself to others, but rather to connect with them.
So why is it that when we’re behind a screen we so quickly lose all logic?!
We see one square photo and immediately assume that we are irreparable disasters who have never done a single good thing - oh, and while we’re on this self-deprecating spree don’t forget that we all better lose that extra 10lb n o w, immediately, and preferably with enough before and afters for a few hundred likes.
Well, I think it’s because we no longer allow any true form of socialization to be a part of how we utilize social media. Sure, we scroll and we offer a polite heart or thumbs up as we keep our thumbs moving, but how many of us comment with genuine congratulations? How many of us send a DM of support, encouragement, or to simply ask to grab a cup of coffee out in the actual world?
I’m raising my hand right now and admitting it’s something I rarely ever do, but I know I could benefit from.
So tonight as you scroll through your favorite platform and you find those gross feelings slowly creeping their way up, I want to challenge you to actually implement social practices to rid yourself of those feelings.
Send a DM to someone you admire - actually tell them that you admire them and why
Leave a comment! Jealousy is squashed when we cheer each other on. Offer up a genuine congratulations or word of encouragement
Invite someone out - or better yet invite them over. I firmly believe that some of my best friendships have been built over mediocre coffee at my very own dining room table
Edit your feed and unfollow people you constantly find yourself comparing yourself to. It’s important to monitor where your energy is being spent and sometimes we have to hit unfollow to protect our own energy. This is especially true when it comes to following strangers!