Thought Catalog

Your Online Persona Is Robbing You Of Real Experiences (That Would Actually Be Worth Sharing)

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There is no doubt there are many amazing things are happening as technology advances. We feel safer, more connected, and life is more convenient. But why don’t we ever look how social platforms are changing us as people, the way we see ourselves and the way we interact with other people.

Twitter is pretty cool, you can share something that you love like an article or movie with the world or find out if that restaurant is really worth going too.

Instagram is another one everyone knows. It’s great how you can turn a sunset into a super epic sunset, or make that mediocre lunch you just had look mad luxurious in just a few clicks of a button.

But as more and more people are adjusting to the life of having 7 different social platforms we have a hard time staring at anything that isn’t a screen. Why is it we constantly need to tell the world what we did for our workout today? Or that we just brushed our hair?

For a lot of young people, self esteem is based on who you are online. How much you go out, how many friends you have, how much you travel, how many likes or comments you have on a picture.

But I feel like it takes over our minds more than we realize. We think thoughts like “oooo Great that place has a rooftop patio! Perfect I’ll take pictures and prove to him I don’t need him and I’m having fun” Or “Yes! going out with Kristy this weekend. We can take pictures and post them online! I have to look good.”

In my opinion, social platforms have got us use to projecting ourselves out into the open and forgetting about everything else. Why is getting 50 likes on a photo a bigger priority than being aware of whats going on in the world? Like the ebola outbreak in Africa? Or the civil War in Syria?

Now it’s totally fine to want to look nice or go to places that we enjoy. But when we go out with the sole purpose of posting on social media or going to a certain places for instagram are we enjoying ourselves? The more we focus on these things, the less and less real life experiences we have. You could spend all that money on that beautiful dress to look good for a picture (There is nothing wrong with shopping, I love a good dress, this is about priorities) Or you could just chill with your bestie and lay on her bed, talk about nothing and laugh for hours. Instead of taking 50 million selfies till you find the right one read a book! (Guilty of this for sure!).

If we are so focused trying to make our lives look fun and exciting on Facebook how can we be totally real with people? Personally I feel that it’s harder with these thoughts swimming in our minds to really be open with each other and vulnerable. This is how we seem on social media, so this is who we are to others.

What happened to going out with a friend and just listening to them instead of wondering when you’re going to take a cute picture to post?

We know how to tweet that we ate some new flavour of chips that just came out or that the dog pooped on the carpet again but are we forgetting how to have a real conversation? If we sit in a room with our best friend for 2 hours on our phones we aren’t really doing anything are we? “Thoughts, ideas and words are ‘coins’ for real things.” Allan Watts says in his book “The Wisdom Of Insecurity”. I try to see social media platforms like this. Likes and followers aren’t really “Real.”

Instead of wondering when the next double tap on our picture is going to be on a recent upload while your best friend is beside you why don’t we actually DO something? Like laughing till we cry because we are so out of breathe from hiking or baking cookies and getting in a food fight (cheesy I know). What about bonding over real things? Get out of the house, go for a walk, or read a book. Remember what it feels like to do real things again. Lets discover ourselves through finding out what kind of documentaries we are into or what our favourite quotes are. Lets feel an emotional rush from writing a song straight from the heart, or opening up and being vulnerable to friend who is not really a close friend but a Facebook friend.

We are all people, we all shit, we all cry, we all sweat, we aren’t always the flawless complexion we make ourselves out to be with filters and apps. Lets make moments WORTH documenting, not create moments FOR documenting. TC mark

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