Social media is one of the most important things in today's world. It serves as both a source of entertainment and news; two things everyone is after in the still lingering post-election madness. Whether your poison is Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or a combination of all of these, chances are you can be glued to it at times. We've all been guilty of scrolling through our newsfeeds instead of paying attention in class or focusing on homework. Can we be blamed, though? With hilarious memes, I'm talking about you cheering Merryl and the Oh No Baby guy, and inspiring videos, both the food ones and the ones about dogs, social media gives us unlimited access to the entertainment we seek the most. However, it has its downfalls.
Social media creates all sorts of pressure to look as hot as Alexis Ren and have the same relationship her and Jay Alverez shared. You probably have all seen those tweets of a random couple who are being praised for their creative prom-posal or their cute texts about how much they love each other. This idea of looking to social media and striving to meet the expectations others have set can ruin relationships. That is something I explored in another article a while back so I won't touch on it too much this time. That article can be found here if you are interested. However, that idea is related to what I'm talking about today.
Something I've noticed that is occurring more and more frequently is this need that other have to be the first to post something. What I mean is that there seems to be this obsession with being the first person to do something normal, like going to a drive-in movie, and tweeting about it so you get likes and retweets. People are trying way too hard to stand out by doing what everyone else is doing and posting about it. Many of the things you find on your newsfeeds are just reposts of another person's post of a gift they received or a trip they took with the caption "I want this." These days, it feels like people post things to boast about their lives or to try to set a trend. Everyone seems so concerned with being the first person on their newsfeed to do something instead of actually doing that thing for the sake of enjoying it. And it's not necessarily a bad thing; these displays of affection and video montages of trips are cute and interesting. However, after I see them, I always find myself asking if that was done or posted because they want others to be jealous and follow suit, or are they actually enjoying themselves?
I guess what I am trying to say in this long-winded, glorified rant is that it seems like lately everyone is doing things and sharing them to get the approval of others on social media. "Being themselves" is coming across as an attempt to get praise and retweets and likes. I'm also guilty of this, I'll admit it. And maybe I'm wrong and reading way to much into things. Or maybe our identities are so wrapped up in social media and the rush we get from seeing our like count climb that we don't even realize it. Social media can bring us amazing stories and memes, but it can also negatively affect our relationships and even the ways we view ourselves.