A virtual reality where everyone is seemingly living their best life.
We live in a society that is keen on posting our every move online. Social media has become a place where even non-famous people are competing with each other. They’re seeing who has the most likes, the most followers and the best Instagram aesthetic. Every morning and every night we log on to our social media accounts and begin scrolling. We see images of beautiful people that are traveling, having fun and eating the most delicious looking food with their perfect friends and families. I quickly discovered that the images celebrities and even regular people post online are simply just that: images.
Photo by Mariana Rodr
It’s very easy to catch a case of “FOMO”, or a fear of missing out. We witness regular people become sensational overnight because their content went viral. Sometimes I do wish it would happen to me. I experienced FOMO more so in high school. That was when social media was becoming more popular for my age group. If I couldn’t hang out with my friends or be somewhere I knew everyone was going to be posting about, I would feel left out. I felt like those were memories I needed and deserved to have too. When I started college I realized that it’s actually okay to sit events out and watch them unfold from my phone. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America has a few suggestions on how to get over FOMO. The best tip offered for those that experience this is to simply take a break from all forms of social media. This will most certainly offer you a fresh and much needed new perspective.
Social media today is a business, a lucrative one at that. Influential people that get paid to post aren’t always advertising the best of things. You’ll see a mix of flat tummy tea, waist trainers and even laser hair removal being promoted by extremely popular people. Many young men and women are highly influenced by what they see celebrities and public figures posting on their social media. The problem beings when you start to portray yourself as someone you’re not online. When people in real life meet you they will have expectations simply because of how you presented yourself virtually. That realization alone can become a devastating reality for some of us. The people we follow, friends or celebrities, are only showcasing the highlights of their lives. Chances are they will rarely if ever post the struggles they face and the problems they wake up to. It takes an insightful person to realize that the life they are currently living is as real and as genuine as anyone else’s, on and offline.