Here’s something I was talking to a friend about some time back and I just suddenly felt the need to write it down and post it as I felt it would be relevant to myself and others who might struggle with this from time to time.
So, yes here’s to you if you have ever struggled with your sense of self-worth because of social media.
The first thing I hope you know is that your sense of self- worth should never come from others. The idea that you have to be liked or appreciated or even acknowledged by others to feel a sense of worth just isn’t right.
You are your own person first and foremost. And what does that mean? It means that you’re not meant to be like everyone else or anyone else. You don’t have to be like your peers, your friends, your close friends, your siblings or even your parents. You are an individual and that means you have the right to make your own choices and live your life on your own terms (you should still listen to your parents on most things tho. They’re wiser than you, most of the time).
I’m saying this to first help you to understand that you should never feel pressured by social media to live a certain way or to do certain things or to use social media like everybody else. And yes, that last thing is probably the one most relevant to the topic we’re discussing today and we are going to go into more detail about that.
But first, let’s just make it very clear that your sense of self-worth should be something intrinsic. And that means that it’s something that should come from within you. It can never be measured by external factors much like what society preaches nowadays.
You are not defined by how many close friends you have, how many amazing vacations and travel destinations you visited, how amazing the food you posted looks like, what outfits you wear, what you own etc etc. The list could go on forever, and that is the sad thing about people who derive their sense of self-worth based on these things.
Surely, everyone comes up short when measuring their self-worth based on the infinite amount of ways that society says there are. And perhaps that’s true for why advertising is so effective nowadays. Why companies pay millions for personal data which helps them to know our preferences and tastes. I’m not saying this because I’m a radical anti-capitalist or whatsoever but surely there is some truth as to why so many of us feel like we are never good enough and part of that could be due to the effects of marketing and advertising in particular.
Okay, back to the main topic. You’re amazing even if it might not seem like it. There are things which only you can do, there are thoughts only you have and the way you live should be unique to you. And I hope you are unashamed of that. There is no point in trying to live life trying to emulate or copy others.
Now, how does all that translate to the way you use social media. Well, first of all, you might want to filter out whatever is causing you to feel pressured to live life a certain way which you feel is not for you. Unfollow those accounts because the more you see their posts on your feed, the more it gets to your sense of self-worth.
Now we got rid of the negative input, how does that help with our output? You mentioned that there are a particular group of people who have said that your posts or stories are annoying or distasteful and how that affected you greatly. And that saddens me so much. Here’s something I NEED you to know and this might not be true for everyone else but who cares, if this applies to you too, you might wanna go along with it and ignore everyone else:
The reason why I would follow or be someone’s friend on social media is to CONNECT with them and to get to know who they are. Not the people they pretend to be.
Let that sink in for a bit. You got that? So yes, if I’m following you, I wanna know about the songs you like, the crazy obsession you have with a particular K-pop artist, the words you felt were meaningful, the times, things and people that sparked joy in YOUR life.
The more true it is to you, the better. It does not have to be aesthetic, it SHOULD NOT be like what everyone else is posting and instead its main focus should be on you. What makes you happy, what you like what you don’t like etc. It’s not about narcissism, it’s about being REAL.
Now, that applies both ways, to what kind of input you are receiving on social media and what output you are putting out on social media. I’m sure it’s not for everyone and that’s okay. That’s just the way I view it.
I hope that has been helpful. Stay amazing, friend and I hope you never doubt your sense of self-worth because of social media again.