Real People, Fake World.

Monday, June 09, 2014

I love social media. Tweeting is one of my favorite hobbies, I use Facebook inbox religiously, and Instagram is my guilty pleasure. But like anything in the world, social media has its vices. 

Social media gives you the opportunity to share your world with essentially anyone on the planet, but sometimes the world we share isn't exactly real. A picture is worth a thousand words, and they can all be lies.

We may not be intentionally lying through our pictures, but a little Photoshop never hurt anybody, right? As someone who regularly compares her life to those portrayed on Instagram, maybe it's time to check our self(ie) before we wreck our self. Because let's face it, no one's life is a perfect as their Instagram feed.

Let's start with the selfie. There's a lot to consider when it comes to a selfie. (Man do I sound like Dr. Phil or what?)

A selfie crops out most of the surroundings. So, what may look like a really fun picture in a really fun place may just be a normal selfie outside a house. Granted, this picture was very entertaining to take, but it doesn't look quite as glamorous from a distance.

It's also pretty common knowledge that the selfies you see posted are 1/x amount of pictures. There's not many people who willingly post the out takes. (Clearly I'm an exception to this rule as you can see from the weird face ones below.)

So what may appear to be the perfect picture probably took a lot longer than you would think. So, if you're feeling jealous of someone's 'perfect' looks, let's face it, they're not perfect. And that's okay.

So let's move onto food Instagrams.

Leigha at Minou Girl mentioned in this post that scrolling through her Instagram feed started making her compare herself and her intake to that of others.

She said, "I follow a lot of those ED recovery accounts that post every single meal they eat. I found that I compared what I was eating to what they were eating. Not good! Now that I’m not seeing what/when they eat, I’m being more intuitive with what I want to eat. And it’s awesome."

Instagram is a great place to post what you're eating, what you're baking, what you're snacking on, etc. The thing is, what someone is eating may not be what you should eat. Everyone's intake is something unique to them. If you eat exactly what your favorite Instagrammer eats, you're probably not going to thrive as much as you would eating what you need to eat.

I've been asked if I post everything I eat on my Instagram. While this may seem funny, I've really been asked this quite a few times. The answer is no, I don't post everything I eat. If my Instagram was a documentation of everything I eat, then apparently I only eat smoothies.

Also, I'd like to point out that every single one of these smoothie pictures was taken in my backyard. 
While it looks all tropical and fun (and usually is), nine times out of ten I'm sweaty from a run and trying to snap a picture as fast as possible to get out of the humidity. It's hot in Texas. (No surprises there!)
Even though I still think the smoothies are gorgeous and really tasty, they're not quite as picturesque when you know the background story, huh?

Let's face it, when it comes to pictures of food, who isn't guilty of adding a little more nut butter to their oatmeal after photographing it? So next time you get e-food envy, remember that pictures can be very misleading. 

#quotesLet social media inspire you. Let it make you a better person. Let it influence your life for the better. It has the capability to revolutionize your world.                                                                                                                                                     At the same time, use it with caution. Don't let it fill you with jealousy and all the negative aspects of life. Nobody's life is perfect, no matter what they try to tell you. How you act and react to social media is your choice. Take it with a grain of salt. 

In a perfect world, everything on social media would be 100% real and honest, but it's not. There's no need to compare yourself to something that could be completely false. Your life might night be perfectly arranged meals, perfect outfits, or perfect scenic views, but don't let that bother you. Your life does have it's own perfect moments. And those moments are completely real. They don't need a filter.

is your social media world a little too perfect?
do you compare your life to those portrayed online?
how do you stay positive and real through social media?

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10 Happy Thoughts

  1. I don't know that my social media world is too perfect, but it definitely doesn't showcase a whole lot of fails. For instance, I don't post a picture of me falling on my face while doing crow pose on the monkey bars ;)
    Most definitely, I compare my life to those portrayed online. Garmin pics are the worst for me - I always look at paces to see how much faster I need to sprint (instead of, you know, enjoying my run ;) )
    I stay positive and real by openly saying that a run was not fun (and from now on, by posting a blooper photo)

    1. Girl you are SO honest on social media. I love all your yoga pictures and Monday Miles post and everything! Your transparency and honesty are two of many reasons why I love your blog, so I don't think you have anything to worry about. As for the comparing, your yoga moves are AMAZING and any run is a good run! Who cares if you don't run a mile in 5 minutes? :) x

  2. You got it spot on! So many insta accounts make people seem like they are living a perfect life, but when you actually know the person you find out they are just like you...My friends always say "you always eat the prettiest food" but the truth is, most of the time my food is just thrown together in a bowl and doesn't look half as attractive as the select few meals I post! haha great post :)

    1. Right? Life doesn't have to look/seem perfect. Anyways, I think perfect is rather boring. The normal stuff is what's really interesting! And I LOVE just throwing together food. I'm the least organized person when it comes to meals. They can be all over the place, but they taste great :)

  3. I love this so so so so much <3 and I'm honored that you quoted me :) I just commented this on Jess's post, but I said that I never post anything on IG that I don't eat (like something extra on the plate!) and I do try to eat most of my meals on an actual plate rather than hodge podge things out of the fridge because I like to sit down and enjoy my meal! (not that I have anything against people doing that :) I've been spending less and less time on social media lately and I feel so happy. Like seriously. I have this never ending happy feeling and I don't know where it's coming from. It's like I'm doing things I truly enjoy rather than be sitting on the computer all day!

    1. It was an amazing quote! My mom rarely comments on what I've posted, but she mentioned how much she loved your quote. You've got approval from the mom! I IG the actual thing I eat too. All that fruit/nut butter on my smoothies are devoured seconds after the pictures are taken! I've not been Instagramming or blogging as much either, but taking a break is a lot more fun than I thought it would be! Good for you!

  4. AMEN to this post girlie. All of it is so so true. I don't do the whole food envy thing with insta accounts, but I do get the body envy. Most of the accounts I follow are of strong women looking to build and strengthen their bodies, but sometimes I just look at their posts and then myself and wonder "what the heck am I doing wrong?" but then I just have to take a step back and realize that for me, I'm doing the best I can. This body of mine is just that, MINE. Maybe I won't ever have a 6 pack or quads that are nice and shapely, and that's ok. I just need to remember that I'm strong, healthy, and vibrant. THATS what I want people to experience when they look at my Instagram.

  5. Great post! I often feel like I'm projecting myself too perfectly and there are so many imperfections in life. I always have yoga envy on Instagram!

  6. Sweaty selfies and my slow runs make up like half my instagram account, so I think I'm okay for the moment ;) I agree though that people need to always be conscious that what is online tends to be the highlights and not the mundane and I think this was an excellent way to put the reminder out there. Though living in Texas this time of year I don't think I would judge you if you only ate smoothies, it's got to be too hot for anything else!

  7. For whichever reason I missed this post until now but still felt like you I completely agree. What we post on social media is always just a fraction of our thoughts, meals, workouts - life. The exact amount obviously depends on the person: some share a lot, some are more cautious.
    If my social media world is a little too perfect? Well, I've had people tell me how healthy all of my food looked. Which isn't a bad thing but I don't eat only vegetables and beans all day. Though chocolate comes from a bean so maybe I do in fact only eat that ;). That's where I sometimes feel the need to stress I'm not perfect. Far from it and I hope that this is the overall image people get when they visit my blog, too.
    Anyway: a great post, Katherine!


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