It’s Not Social Media, It’s You

You know what I’m sick of? People complaining that social media is ruining everything. “People never talk to each other any more and just stare at their phones instead”. “Everything on social media is filtered and fake”. “Everyone is unrealistically happy and perfect online”. Well, I’ve got news for you: it’s not social media that’s the problem, it’s you.

Yes, it’s true that we all tend to present a slightly idealistic view of ourselves on our social media, but just because we pick the best selfie out of a bunch of 10 or 20 different angles doesn’t mean it’s not real life. Just because we want to share nice photos of sunsets and cakes and lipsticks doesn’t mean we don’t get ill or have bad days or go through hardships. Sometimes, if life is feeling a bit rubbish, it’s rather lovely to have a scroll through your own Instagram page and remind yourself of lots of happy things. I want to be able to remember that meal with my best friends or that afternoon in the park with my boyfriend or that weekend on holiday with my family – and if that means I whip out my phone and take a couple of minutes to rearrange the plates and the cutlery on the table for a pretty aerial shot, then so be it.

 

You must be pretty naive if you think someone’s Twitter profile or Facebook page is a full and accurate representation of that person’s life. Complaining that “real people” can’t live up to these perfectly filtered high standards is a ridiculous notion because we all know that these accounts are like a highlights reel rather than a 24/7 running commentary. Surely you’re guilty of it yourself, no? Detagging a Facebook photo because your face looks a bit weird, or uploading an Instagram photo of your bedroom only after you’ve picked all your dirty washing up off the floor? And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Just because you select which photos to use doesn’t make them any less real; they all still happened and they all still hold memories which otherwise might be lost and forgotten.

Social media accounts are personal (even ones which feature adverts or paid content) and so you can share exactly what you want to; nobody expects you to share every single thing in order for you to be “authentic”. On the other hand, if you do want to share the not-so-perfect things then just do it, you go Glen Coco. The same rules apply for social media as for general life: don’t be a dick, don’t lie, be yourself and do what makes you happy. So, really, if you think social media is the problem then you just need to get a grip, lighten up and maybe switch off your notifications for an hour or two.

 

Gillian x

Gillian

Freelance social media and digital marketing consultant with a penchant for writing blog posts, drinking sickly sweet cocktails and exploring the cobbled streets of Edinburgh.

7 Comments

  • Ashleigh Roy says:

    Couldn't agree more with this post. Its entirely up to the account holder what they want to share. Sometimes I feel guilty for uploading a selfie on my instagram incase people think 'she loves herself' or 'shes bragging' etc. I shouldn't feel like that because at the end of the day I can post whatever I want to post and because I post a selfie does NOT been I love myself or anything. The assumptions that are made because of social media is ridiculous xx

  • I fricking love this! I'm so sick of people blaming social media for problems that it hasn't caused. Thank you for writing this, honestly and truly—it's made my day x x x

    kassiella.blogspot.co.uk

  • Dawn Young says:

    Yes.

  • joyce goes says:

    I agree- after watching Essena O'Neills video I thought that it was really brave of her quitting it if it makes her unhappy- but at the same time, this is not social media thats doing it to her…

    so yeah, !!!!!

  • Ayden Millar says:

    Hit the nail on the head Gillian! I touched on this in one of my last posts too. Loved reading this, was nodding all the way through xx

  • JXL says:

    LOVE this post – you've got a really good head on your shoulders. IMHO, I feel like you can't win on social media: you post a lot of highlights and you get accused of humble bragging, but if you post lowlights, then you're that "girl who's always moaning". I also think that blaming everything on social media is another way of skirting personal responsibility. It's much easier to make Twitter/Facebook/Instagram the scapegoat on feelings rather than doing the self-reflecting work to figure out why something makes a person respond a certain way. Anyways, this was a really thought provoking post. Hope you do another one like it!

  • Ria says:

    *jumps up and down* I love everything in this post. I adore the idea of the things we post on social media serving as a reminder of the good things in life! Xx

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