Did you read that title in the tune of "I'm a Barbie girl, in a Barbie world, I'm plastic, it's fantastic..?" I hope you did, cause it probably made it more enjoyable. If you didn't, I suggest you go back and read it to that tune.
Okay, on to what's really important here.
What's the first thing you do when you wake-up? Besides moan and groan that it's time to get up when you'd rather be sleeping. My guess is, check your phone. That's what I do. My phone actually sleeps with me. The way my room is set-up, the only place to charge my phone at night is by using the plugin beside by bed, and the only place to put my phone is beside my pillow. Well, I guess it's NOT the only place I could charge it. I could charge it in the kitchen ... or in the other end of my room. But I don't.
My point is, I am so consumed and controlled by my phone that it's the first thing I look at when I wake up and the last thing I look at when I go to bed. I scroll through Instagram while I'm still in bed in the morning. Okay, not completely harmful. But what can be harmful is WHAT I'm looking at. I used to follow "fitspo" accounts that only posted pics of girls with big booties and flat abs with "motivational" quotes that only pressured me and made me feel guilty when I didn't level up to that standard.
*If you are following accounts that trigger you and make you feel worthless, UNFOLLOW them. There's an unfollow button for a reason. You have the power to choose what you see on social media. If it negatively affects you, then remove it. That's what I've done, and I'm still doing. When I see a post, I ask myself, does this benefit me? Did I learn from it? Did it make me laugh? Or is it making me feel bad about my body? Is it making me question how hard I'm working. Then GOODBYE.
Social media is just part of life. We run off of it. Yes it 100% affects the way I see myself and the way I present myself. I'm conscious about what I post. Do I look good enough? But I try my best to portray a POSITIVE account on Instagram because I know that over 20k girls are looking at my posts and I DO NOT want them to feel guilty or less of themselves when they see a pic of me. Do NOT comment "goals" on my pics. I am not goals. No one is "goals." You are YOU. You are your own damn goals.
On to something else related to social media and attachment to our lovely phone devices. Do you get emails to your phone? I do. So again, I'm CONSTANTLY connected to what's coming through my email chain. Of course, I could delete my gmail app. But I don't. My choice. Why? Because I feel the pressure to be constantly connected and to respond INSTANTLY.
We are a generation of instant connection. When deep down I know that I don't have to respond instantly. The email can wait. Remember when we didn't have email on our phones? Well, you might not, you might be too young. But the point is, we survived without it.
Put away the phone and just live. After I had a really bad anxiety attack and ended up in the hospital finding out I had stress induced Irritable Bowel Syndrome, my boyfriend and I decided that every night when we're together our phones stay AWAY. There's no checking Instagram, there's no checking emails. It's time to just enjoy being in the moment. And you know what happened? I felt free. I felt relaxed. I felt less stressed. I was just living. How refreshing is that? When was the last time you felt like that?
I'm still working on it. But being so connected does play a huge role in my body image and my stress/anxiety.
I'll leave you with this quote that inspired me:“Imagine if social media became a place where we shared our dreams instead of hiding our faults, where we collaborated in conversation instead of trolling anonymously, where we felt included instead of excluded. We need to reinvent the online community to cultivate a safer, more diverse, more welcoming environment where we value people for generating thoughts, not likes… We have an incredible tool in our hands, we need to use it to change the world.”
Do you think you're TOO connected? Do you think social media affects you negatively? Let me know in the comments!