Social media is what defines and shapes our generation. From the outside, it's wonderful! You can share pictures instantly, express your current emotions, and design your profiles to what suits you best. But it also comes with a lot of downsides, and those downsides are often very ugly…
People usually don't put their worst selves out there—and especially not on their public pages. Why would they? Social media is like making a good first impression. No one wants to be defined by their mistakes and flaws, so it would make no sense to highlight those things online where they'll be preserved forever.
Here is where the problem lies: people only share their best experiences online.
That doesn't sound so bad, but when you think about it further, it means that social media turns into a competition of sorts. We compete with one another—whether we are aware of it or not—to showcase our best outings and promote the idea that we are living a great life.
Not only is this unrealistic, but it forces terrible, crumbling expectations on everyone else.
If your social media feed is flooded with pictures of people having a good time and you're not, it makes you feel like you're doing something wrong. If you're having a bad day, but you are unable to vent because everyone else seems so happy, that bad energy gets pent up until it festers.
If we focus too much on what others are posting on social media, it builds into the idea that there is only one right way to live your life. It enforces the wrong statement that your experiences have to align with everyone else's.
The truth is that your life doesn't have to match with everyone else's, and that's okay. Everyone is their own individual person, so why should we need to do the same things or move at the same pace?
Social media has instilled this mindset among this current generation that if we're outsiders online, we should be disappointed about it. This couldn't be more wrong.
If there is one thing you should take away from this, it's that you shouldn't worry or focus on what others are doing with their lives. Stop telling yourself that you need to do more or project yourself further for validation online. You're your own person, and social media is just the outer layer of the individual. We shouldn't take it at face value.
Stop obsessing over the lives of others, and go out and live your own. Delete your social media apps if you have to. Living in the moment can be fairly liberating, you know.