Wednesday, 12 November 2014

My love/hate relationship with Instagram

I am addicted to Instagram. I know I'm not the only one - society is obsessed with capturing the moment, whether it be selfies, a beautiful view, a new purchase, what we're eating, an achievement. You name it, we capture it. I love to scroll down my Instagram feed to see what other people are doing. I often see things that I want to do or try for myself and it's a very easy way of seeing it first hand. Also, not forgetting that I can look back at my own pictures and relive certain memories!

The problem with this app, just like many other social networks, is that comparison seems to be so high, and more often than not you can come away from Instagram feeling worse about your life than before you decided to log in. I see photos of new clothes, make up, shoes etc and as much as I do think 'oooh she looks nice', I am also thinking 'I want that' or 'I'd never look that good in that' which leaves me feeling very materialistic and ungrateful for what I have. 

Personally, it hits me hardest when I see people running. I've gone past the whole 'why am I not running that too?' phase.. I know it's not healthy for me hence why I don't do it. But I don't feel happy or supportive of these people either. I think 'NO ONE WANTS TO HEAR ABOUT HOW YOU JUST RAN TO AFRICA AND BACK'. It makes us feel lazy and inadequate, but more so, I feel negativity towards these people because it feels like showing off. Of course, for the most part, they aren't. They are simply proud of themselves and I should be spurring them on too!

I also need to think we need to remind ourselves that Instagram allows us a tiny snippet of someone's life. We see a hot chocolate and assume they are having a lovely, cosey evening by the fire with a good film, when actually they could be crying into this drink because their boyfriend just broke up with them. My point is, Instagram is not realistic. We filter the sh*t out of everything to make it look good, so when we do compare, we are essentially comparing to something that doesn't really exist and without knowing the full story. The girl that went on the 10 mile run - yeah, she may be overcoming depression and exercise is her only outlet. 

I personally am reminding myself of what I do have in my life, rather than what I don't. And rather than being negative towards someone's achievements maybe we should genuinely congratulate them. And remember that someone, somewhere, will be jealous of what you do and what you have. 


Polly Rowan said...

I love this post! I actually am thinking of giving it up for a couple of weeks because I think I am a bit addicted. Also, I actually did once post a picture of a hot chocolate after a painful break up, and it did look perfect! And I was in actual fact, utterly miserable! Thanks for drawing attention to the fact that we often forget x

Kenzie Smith said...

This is a great post! I love Instagram because I love scrolling through all the lovely photos, but I have had times where I get a little down about things. I can completely understand thinking "I wish I had that" or "their life must be perfect" when, in reality, I have no idea. We always put our best photo forward or stage it, and it is really easy to forget that.

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