How real are we on social media?

I thought I would write about something a little lighter, about something I have been observing for quite some time – even though I know it’s not a new topic.

IMG_0228I don’t read any glossy magazines as they bore me and the advertizements on every other page simply annoy me. But I know that these magazines are very popular and more often than not cause people (especially women) that leaf through them to hate their body and their lives afterwards. Something very similar can be observed on social media.

 

I am moderately active in social media, I am on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and have a YouTube channel (considering all this, perhaps I am a little more than moderately active). I use these media for different purposes:

1. I mainly post and share my YouTube videos there with my Poetry Challenge (I challenged myself to read a poem every day this year and publish them on my YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzVsRQXXsmKAMp3y_7847bg).
2. I stay in touch with people I cannot see as often as I would like (sometimes even get in touch with interesting people I would have otherwise not met).
3. I sometimes post from my walks or runs by the lake
4. I see what’s going on in the world, view different takes on diverse topics
5. I get inspiration – the good and the ugly.

So you see, I am actually quite a fan of social media and the amazing possibilities it has to offer.

IMG_0229I also notice though and don’t cease to be stunned and amused by the glossy life that many people pretend to lead there and seem to forget their real life – and with some I know what their real life looks like…
This is not an attack against social media or against the people who present a perfect and photo-shopped life that is worlds away from reality – some just show (almost) anything for a like! IMG_0254

I am the first to admitt that I enjoy it when people like my posts and watch my videos or comment what I do (preferably positively of course) – and it is always nice to get some form of recognition. But I also realize that many people give me a like without even reading my posts or looking at my videos. I never get lost in this world though as I know how superficial it is – most of the time.

Take my Instagram account for example. I have, as of today 713 followers, most of which come from a different time and have most likely simply forgotten to unfollow me. I do one post for my poetry reading every day and get an average of 10 – 15 likes. That is an average of 1,4 – 2,1% of my “followers” that like what I do (and even less on Facebook). If that were truly important to me I would most likely cry myself to sleep every night in despair of my unpopularity. I can assure you that this is something that does not keep my up at night. It is admittedly a fun part of my day and I enjoy choosing the poetry to read, I enjoy doing my videos,  I even enjoy doing the posts and I certainly enjoy the likes. I am also open to suggestions on how to do better – as long as I can stay me and don’t start doing what I do to please others, to get more clicks or likes.

So many people show things they belive will get the most likes, they show a grand life style they would like to have and when they turn the phone or the computer off reality often hits like a sledge hammer leaving them behind in despair. The real world quickly appears dull and bleak and they want the colourful life of the glossy magazines and social media back. I have seen people get hopelessly lost in this illusory world.

IMG_0230

 

I am not saying to only present the harsh and cold truth as we all certainly need beauty and happiness in our lives, but I advocate for a little bit more reality on social media. How fun would it be to see real people with real lives that you can actually relate to. Fortunately there are some out there who are showing more of that. And there is really no harm in a little ideal world and joy in our everyday lives (which is there anyway if we are open to seeing it), as long as we still know the difference between joyful entertainment and reality…

 

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