– How real do we need to be, how edited, how perfect are we allowed to showcase ourselves on social media? At what point is it not acceptable any more, how much is necessary?-
That’s what I asked myself yesterdays whilst scrolling through one beautiful Instagram profile after the other. Social Media really is a funny thing. Generally there is an expectation to be as real, as authentic as we can. The audience has mostly come to terms that the so-called “influencers” need to be a relatable idol, someone to look up to but, as well as someone you can compare yourself with. Beautiful photos, hip lifestyle, great sense of fashion… literally perfect, but with enough flaws, so that everyone feels a little more comfortable. Those are the influencers today’s audience on want. The expectations are high.
In the meantime, people complain about heavily edited photos, fake smiles, posed photographs. And for the longest time I was complaining with them.
But just now, my mindset has suddenly shifted.
It is needless to say that even though we all try to seem real, a person with problems and flaws, not too many, just the right amount, amazing enough to be admired, on the internet we are all sort of fake. No matter how hard you try, you will never be able to show the whole of your personality, your whole life and everything you think on your social media. Doesn’t that alone mean, that whoever you see on social media is just a glimpse of the personality who is behind the account? No matter how hard you try, you can never really give a truly realistic idea of your life.
And you know what, I’ve come to terms, that maybe that shouldn’t even be our goal.
If you think about it, social media is a platform created for us to share whatever we wish to share with either the whole world or just a group of friends. We share our passions, positivity, inspirations, opinions, problems, actually we mostly showcase ourselves. And that is why it is so popular, we like to showcase ourselves and we like that we can showcase just our favorite part of ourselves.
In real life we meet people, talk, get to know them, learn about her/his personality, what they like, what they dislike, what they’re good at and what they’re not. The longer you know a person, the more you spend time with him or her, the more you find out who they are and where their strength, where they’re flaws are. Both undeniably belongs to a person. And it is hard to hide either side. Yes we can choose not to say certain things, avoid certain situations and conversations… but because you can’t just stop being yourself sooner or later a person that is close to you, will find out about it.
Now something as neat as social media comes along, and suddenly it is so easy to not show certain sides of yourself. To only talk about the positive ones, to only pick the best photo, your favorite dress and the coolest location. You get to choose so carefully what of yourself other people get to see.
And truly, how can you judge anyone for that?
How can people call you out as inauthentic and fake when you simply choose to not show your bad days, not show your weaknesses and bad moments. How can you judge someone who doesn’t want to tell you the things they are not proud of?
We’ve all heard the quote: “be the best version of yourself”. Well, that is exactly what most people are on social media. And I think that is ok.
Of course, I still disagree with lying on social media. We should stay true to ourselves and not make up a whole new personality. But I think there is nothing wrong with only showing the best side of yourself. Share whatever you want to share, be as personal as you want to be. But do not judge anyone who choses to only show the best traits of themselves.
Because truthfully, by now, we should all be aware of the fact that nothing on the internet can even get close to who you really are as a person in real life.
My mind is still not really done and over with this subject, there is so much controversy and opinions as soon as you start talking about social media. But it is important to talk about it. And I would love to have a big discussion with you guys about it. Please let me know if agree or disagree with me, whether you have a completely different opinion or view on this. I want to hear all about it!
I’m out and about,
Photography: “The Lilac Look” Instagram