When I sat down to write this piece, I honestly found it funny and ironic. How could the girl who checks her phone about as often as she breathes be trusted to write a piece on using social media sensibly?
But then I thought, maybe my candor will read relatably, and maybe I’ll learn something myself.
Apparently, the average American spends 147 minutes a day submerged in the social media realm. That’s nearly two and a half hours of unrealistic depictions, not to mention two and a half hours that could have been spent making memories that matter.
This statistic scared me. I blacked out for a second. I’d never considered how much time I’d get back if I wasn't part of the generation that clung to their phones like security blankets, apathetic with isolation and boredom, constantly posting to validate proof of living.
Growing up, social media was my kryptonite. Being a young girl and seeing absolutely nothing reflected on my feed that mirrored my reality, I did a lot of wishing.
“Being a young girl and seeing absolutely nothing reflected on my feed that mirrored my reality, I did a lot of wishing.”
Wishing my life was more like the ones I saw my peers living. Wishing for change. Today, at 23 years old, I see that dream world for what it really was, painfully fu**ing boring.
My position as M&P’s Marketing Coordinator has shed a harsh light on what happens behind the curtain of social media, and now that I’ve started writing, I suppose that my unconventional life has left me with a few pieces of wisdom on navigating the digital age with your sanity intact.
1. Embrace The Imperfect
Is your photo blurry because your mom has no idea how to use her phone camera? Do you and your best friend have double chins because you couldn’t stop laughing? Did you get Fireball in your eye and now your mascara is running?
These things may or may not have happened to me, and I say, post that s***.
Nobody’s going to remember the day they did that lame sorority girl pose and didn’t have a hair out of place, but they sure will remember the Fireball burning up their cornea.
2. Start Your Day Off Some Other Way
There’s nothing quite like scrolling past a photo of your ex and his new honey first thing in the morning. It really gets those positive vibes flowing … but how about staying offline until AFTER your morning coffee?
I usually call my best friend. She tells me I’m a boss ass bitch, we trade some gossip,
make some plans we know we’re both too busy to keep, then I’m all set to conquer my day.
I guess you could meditate, or go for a walk if you’re a sensible person, but I’m not.
3. When You’re Out With Friends, Put That S*** Away
You can keep up with the Kardashians anytime, and Pete Davidson will be just as pale and annoying tomorrow, so look your friends in the eye now!
It can feel easy to use your phone as protection when feeling anxious in a social situation, but the real world is so fleeting, experience it now. You have all night to binge Tik Toks, when you’re lying awake wishing your homies were there.
In a world absolutely dominated by the presence of social media, most of us know that we’d be better off doing a little detox, but we can’t stay away. Almost three quarters of adults and 81% of teens in the U.S. use social media. This puts a large amount of the population at an increased risk of feeling increased anxiety and depression due to excessive social media use.
So, take my advice, or don’t. It’d probably help.
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