Giving You The Best Version Of Me: Social Media In 2017

Giving You The Best Version Of Me: Social Media In 2017

Our social media accounts show that we sketch the life we want to live.
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Social media, the thing we eat, breathe and sleep. Around for years now, it's slowly seeping into the lives of everyone around us, including us as a whole, and digging in deep to facade the lives we actually live. Whether you used MySpace back in the day or are now up to date with the endless platforms of this day in age--Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, etc.--social media really cuts you to the core.

I don't think I've ever gone a day without checking at least one of them, which is the sad, harsh truth. We're in the year of 2017, brand spanking new, fresh off the cutting board, ready to face what this year has to come. We're off posting pictures on Instagram, tweeting the ever infamous "new year, new me" tweets, and checking our Facebook feeds as if it's our last thing to do on Earth. The effect social media has is tremendous in the year of 2017, and it's only going to become more influential in years to come.

The various platforms give us insight into one's life or, at least, the parts they show us. Who they are, what they're like, how they carry themselves, who they want to become. People strive for it. They live for that day by day post from one of their friends, their crush, a family member, or even themselves.

We live in a world where something funny or amazing or cruel will happen, and someone goes "Oh my gosh, I have to tweet that." What happened to the phone calls instead of texts? Or the emails instead of DMs, or the letters instead of defining everything through the millions of wireless transmissions buzzing through the air from one iPhone to another?

I never really grew up in a time where there weren't social media and there weren't cell phones and you actually had to pick up the phone, call your friend, and ask them to come over. I never grew up in the vast world of love letters or letters to loved ones far away. I never got to experience a life without the itch at my skin to check social media.

There is such a vast effect that social media has held over millennials over the years, and it's only going to continue to grow. Sure, one can say it advances your relationship with another, constantly having them there, constantly checking in on each other's lives. But what happens when you face the real world and they're not the person they claim to be in their hundreds of Instagram pictures and thousands of tweets?

Our social media accounts show that we sketch the life we want to live.

We only ever give the good stuff. People only ever see the posts you give them. So, is that really us? Or do we hide behind the hundreds of pictures and thousands of tweets?

Everyone is always so strung up on the number of likes they get, or the number of favorites their post will get, or the "Is that post was really good enough or should I delete it?"

According to NPR, UCLA conducted an observational research project in 2016 where they observed 32 teen's brains while scrolling through an Instagram feed. Vedantam states: "We found that when a photo had more likes, it generated greater activation in the reward centers of the brain. This was true of all photos, including photos the kids had taken themselves." So, if that's the case, how do we fix it?

The fact of the matter is, really, that we don't. There's no plausible way to fix something that makes you feel good, something that feels rewarding. Social media has such a dig in one's life that it's hard to just take a step back and say, hey, maybe my run is done here, the show is over.

So we keep the tape rolling, lengthening out the credits longer than what they need to be. It's a never ending cycle, a never ending movie. People are so strung up on it, so indulged. People dig into social media like a chocolate molten lava cake from the fancy restaurant they could be dining at, had they taken a break from the world of other people for just a minute.

So we live our lives vicariously screen to screen when 30 years ago, people lived their lives face-to-face. The effect of social media soars through the world, one device to another. We can't stop it from growing, and we definitely can't stop it from changing. The world we live in is so prone on that next post you're about to give, or that next picture you're about to Instagram. We wait for someone to post a Snapchat story, or wait for someone to tweet something. We get our hopes up, only to be let down, and sometimes it really hurts.

Social media has its good to it, and it has its bad. Sometimes we see things we don't want to see, and we know well more than we should or care to. Coming from me, a teenage girl with friends in college hundreds of miles away, social media is a bliss. It truly is a great way to keep up on the latest dig, keep in touch with friends and family, and just to check in. But sometimes, just sometimes, it almost feels suffocating in a way. You can never really catch a break. It's always there, constantly asking for your attention, needing you to spark the energy with the tap of your finger to make it come alive.

Maybe sometimes it's better to take a step back. Maybe sometimes the show really is over, but we just try to keep on living it.

Cover Image Credit: Uproar

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20 Fun Facts To Use When Introducing Yourself

As we embark on the semester, we are put on the spot in order to share interesting details about ourselves. This article discloses possible fun facts to tell others!
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After experiencing my first week of classes, I have learned that every student needs a handy-dandy list of fun facts about themselves to tell other people. Many professors use the first couple of classes to learn about their students, so you may need to think about who you are and how you want to introduce yourself to your professor and classmates. We all have that one go-to interesting fact about ourselves, but sometimes you just have to mix it up!

1. My favorite hobby is...

What do you do in your free time? Personally, I love to stay active! I am a competitive Latin dancer and enjoy teaching and taking Zumba classes, going to the gym, and hiking.

2. I love...

Is there something, someone, or somewhere that you love? What makes your heart ache? What do you miss when it's gone? I can say that I love my friends because I feel my most confident when I'm surrounded by those who love and support me.

3. I look up to...

Is there someone you adore? Who mesmerizes you? Who do you wish to learn from? After watching "A Ballerina's Tale," I discovered Misty Copeland. In 2015 she became the first African American ballet dancer to become the Female Principal Dancer at American Ballet Theatre. Her passion, grace, and strength continuously motivate me to better myself as an athlete and an individual.

4. This art speaks to me because...

Coco Chanel said, "In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different." This encourages me to always follow my heart no matter what. I will never follow society's standards and norms because they do not define me. Chanel's saying definitely influences my character and lifestyle.

5. A funny and/or embarrassing memory of me is...

When you make others laugh they want to spend time and make memories with you! Don't be afraid to embarrass yourself. You will come off as down to earth, easy-going, and loyal.

6. My siblings or lack thereof influenced me by...

I can go on and on about my brother, who is 10 years older than I. We have opposite personalities and despite the age gap, we're quite close.

7. My pet(s) are my life because...

Only sad people don't like hearing about furry creatures, even if your pets are slimy and slithering creatures all human beings enjoy hearing pet tales!

8. I'm afraid of...

Your personality can be revealed by your likes and dislikes, including the things that you fear. I am terrified of change and the unknown, hence, the future is an anxiety-inducing topic to discuss for me.

9. I am the way I am because...

What have you gone through in life that has shaped you into who you are today? Remember to be open minded and allow yourself to open up to your peers. You may be surprised by how others respond and/or what others have endured as well.

10. The most unusual item that can be found in your dorm...

This is a fun fact about yourself that can easily liven up an awkward conversation. Think about your quirks and differences! One item I have in my dorm is my teddy bear, Peter, whom I like to joke is my boyfriend.

11. My dream job is...

In college, "What's your major?" is a widespread question. Nonetheless, skip the boring statement of "I'm majoring in..." and go in depth on what your dream job is (hopefully your major factors in to this dream of yours).

12. My hidden talents are...

Angelina Jolie is a knife thrower. Kendall Jenner can produce bird noises. Amanda Seyfried can crochet and knit. Is there anything special you can do? Some people have rare and unique talents, maybe you can think of some hidden talents of your own!

13. My guilty pleasure is...

I will say it a million times: don't be shy when introducing yourself to new people! I'll start by divulging my guilty pleasure: Youtube's family vlogging channel, "OKBaby"!

Check them out: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvUCbnwzySKgbKiB_...



14. Some activities on my bucket list are...


This is an easy way to grab people's attention and find others with similar desires as you. Be an adventurer! Go out of your comfort zone!

15. Talk about your best friend...

How would your best friend describe you? What do you love to do with your best friend?

16. Talk about an accomplishment of yours...

You are incredible and have achieved so much! Reveal something that you are proud of — show off a little!

17. This one time at my job...

Bosses breathing down your neck. Curious coworkers asking personal questions. Cursing customers who never leave you alone. Your job can be filled with tons of hilarious situations that can easily entertain a crowd.

18. During the summer...

Any scars with stories? Any summer flings? Any lessons learned from the tanning too long? Now that summer is over, disclose memories that can leave positive impressions on others.

19. I volunteer at...

Do you do any community service? Share a funny moment while you were volunteering. What did you learn while there? Would you continue?

20. [blank] is meaningful to me because...



What do you appreciate in life? What brightens your day? What makes you fall in love? What does someone have to do to make you smile?

Finally, remember to be outgoing! Reveal that three-mile smile and open your arms to learning about others. Spread smiles, love, and happiness.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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6 Tips On How To Deal With Difficult People

Not everyone is going to like you. That's life. It's important to know how to handle people that are just downright unpleasant

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To go through life expecting that everyone you meet is automatically going to adore you and be your friend is futile. It is impossible to jive with everyone. Every person has their own energy and own views on people. It is a blow to the confidence to realize certain people, no matter how nice you are, just plain don't like you.

But you know what? Those people don't matter and have no right to invade your self-esteem or personal outlook on life.

Throughout much of my young adult years, I have had to deal with people who have been nasty, unfair, judgmental, and who just downright dislike me for seemingly no reason. I used to drag myself through the mud over it, but now, I've realized that there are always going to be naysayers, there are always going to be those tough people you just can't crack.

It has NOTHING to do with you!

Here are 6 tips that I have personally found useful when dealing with crappy, difficult people who just seem to want to single out others and bring them down.

Don't Give People The Reaction They Want

People who don't like you want you to know it, and they want you to react. They are like schoolyard bullies who feed off of their victims' misery. If they try to provoke you or irk you, just respond with a smile and a simple "how are you?" Don't let them believe that they are getting to you, because that's what they want. Want to piss them off? Just be nice and appear unbothered. When they know they are failing at raining on your parade, their storm will slowly lose power.

Talk to someone

Some people feel overwhelmed with emotion when they have to deal with a difficult person. Sometimes it can trigger mental pain and anxiety. They will start to question if they deserve to be treated so poorly by said-person, and slowly lose their self-esteem. If this is happening to you and/or someone is making you feel worthless, don't hesitate to confide about the situation to people close to you. It helps to hear their advice and you can find comfort letting out about what's been going on to those you trust. It's better to talk about this issue that's bothering you than to let it eat away at you.

Ask a mutual acquaintance if they suspect this person is being unfair to you

This is a little different than confiding in someone as I mentioned above. In this case, you would be asking someone who knows the two of you well enough to have a good idea if whether or not this person is actually being unnecessarily cruel to you or if you're just overthinking. Sometimes we can assume that someone doesn't like us and we can be completely wrong. We as humans instinctively want to be liked and accepted, so we are always on alert for those who seem cold to us. Do you feel that maybe you're overthinking the whole situation? Do you think maybe you are overreacting to things they're doing around you that are actually unintentional? Or is it actually true and you are being singled out? If you know someone who can confirm if you're right or wrong, ask them if they agree if that said-person seems particularly against you. However, if this person you want to ask seems at all untrustworthy or is friends with the other person, maybe talk to someone else about it instead.

Confront Them

If this person doesn't seem threatening, I definitely recommend simply confronting them about how you feel. Instead of letting it drag out and weigh on your mind, instead just ask the person if you could speak with them privately, and then calmly ask what's been going on. For instance, say "so I feel there may be some bad blood between us, and I just wanted to clear the air with you about what possibly is going on." Or something along the lines of that. Is it hard? Yes. Is it scary? Yes. Is it worth it? Definitely.

Attempt to Empathize with Them

It's natural to feel hate and anger towards a person who clearly does not like you. However, hating them or feeling waves of anger and anxiety over it does nothing but harm to you. Your anger towards this person won't affect them in any way, and the only person it hurts is you. Rather, think about what possibly is going on in their lives that may be making them particularly unpleasant. Is their parent sick? Were they just dumped? Did they not get the job they wanted? Think about what possibly is going on in their life that you may not be aware of. It'll definitely help put things in perspective, and help you to figure out if it's a personal issue they have against you or if they're just upset for a different reason and happen to be taking it out on you

Let it go

At the end of the day, you have to realize that not everyone's opinion of you matters, and accept that you're not always going to win everyone over, no matter how nice you are. It's better to stay true to yourself than to fake it to make people like you who wouldn't like you otherwise. Doesn't seem worth it to me. Those who really care will accept you as you are and make an effort to be nice to you. I have learned that myself over the years. It's not worth it to feel angry or sad or excluded all because of what a few insignificant, immature people think about you. The only way someone will hurt you is if you let them. Period. Don't give them the power to bring you down in any way. It's like the saying goes:

Those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.

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