Keeping Your Confidence in the Age of Social Media

Every once in a while, I find myself stumbling down the rabbit hole of the Instagram “discover” page.

If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a tab on Instagram that shows a bunch of pictures of people you don’t follow, but you “might be interested in”.

All I see is pictures of these glamorous-looking lifestyles.

Dozens of insanely good-looking people on yachts, at swanky rooftop bars, or exotic travel locations, or doing butt exercises in designer tights.

“Who are these people?” I think to myself. “They’ve got to be celebrities, or hotel heiresses, right?”

Uh, no. Taylor, 18, is a senior in high school in middle-America, and somehow has upwards of 50,000 followers.

What? How??

It says this person is a “Public Figure”…. but this person only posts mirror selfies… What?

If they’re a “public figure” what does that make the rest of us?

Private figures?

Or just when you think you have social media figured out, you stumble across a dog account that has a hundred-thousand followers.

( I’m not gonna be mad about that though, dogs are awesome.)

*Scrolls down*

Oh, this person has a “lifestyle” blog.

Maybe I should start a lifestyle blog.

“Yes, I got these gym shorts at least ten years ago and there’s a hole in the crotch. Shop this look and more! LINK IN BIO!!”

 

Not gonna lie though, I have made my husband take candid pictures of me when I thought I had on a cute outfit. Ha.

One thing great about the internet is that it can be a great equalizer.

Everyone has a platform. Not just celebrities, or politicians.

Everyone.

And if you’re good at it, you don’t have to be rich, famous, or even that attractive to gain a lot of followers.

But one HUGE down side?

It can make it seem like EVERYONE is living a better life than you.

Have you ever clicked on someone’s profile, and thought,

“This person is living this fantastic life, and on a WEDNESDAY night! I can’t even imagine how #blessed their weekends are…”

I know, I know, “social media is filtered and only shows people’s best moments.”

Yeah, but still. Some of those people’s “moments” look awesome.

So how do I deal with the jealousy / anger / feeling of failure / sadness when I click on these pictures?

1. Stop looking at the “discover” page altogether.

99% of these people, you will never meet. So why do you need to compare yourself to them?

Plus, everyone is dealt a different hand in life. Some people are born rich, to famous parents, or with fantastic cheek bones.

You only have one life, one body, one face, one personality, and one set of abilities. If you focus more on how to maximize the most of what you DO have, you’ll be a lot happier.

Plus, spending thirty minutes looking at someone’s pictures wallowing in self-pity is NOT productive.

Spend that time making yourself better.

At the same time, it can be motivation.

There are self-made success stories out there.

Instead of thinking “that person is so much better than me”, think: if they can do it, I can, too!

You can only be the best version of yourself.

One day you will wish you didn’t waste so much time hating your life!

Plus it’s usually something stupidly insignificant.

You’re only young once, so stop wasting it by laying on the couch wishing you had skinnier arms!

2. Try to dissect WHY you are jealous of that person.

Is it because she has mermaid hair? Great abs? A perfect family?

If you break down the root of the issue, you can better identify the problem.

Worrying, wishing, and being jealous do nothing.

So start taking biotin supplements, doing crunches, or plan your future.

When you take steps in the direction of the life you want, it becomes more concrete and achievable!

3. “A flower is not any less beautiful when surrounded by other beautiful flowers.”

Your own self-worth does not diminish in the presence of others.

Life, happiness, and success are not a zero-sum game.

We can all be happy. We can all be successful. These are not limited supplies.

Your self-worth should not be subjective. It should be unwavering to others opinions. A fact, not an opinion.

A lion is always a lion, no matter what you want to call it.

Britney Spears will always be awesome, no matter what the tabloids say!!!

4. Treat yourself with the same kindness you’d show others.

Take a look at your own Instagram feed. Chances are, you’ve probably done some pretty cool things and looked alright doing it.

If you were a stranger to yourself, would you still think these awful thoughts about how dull your life is, or how glaringly awful your eyebrows are?

Probably not.

In summation, this is all basically advice that I need to take myself.

Hope it helps someone else, too!!

Once again, I realize these are #firstworldproblems,  so stop rolling your eyes! Ha.

Anyone else have any good tips on staying confident in the world of social media?

3 Comments

  1. Melissa

    “You only have one life, one body, one face, one personality, and one set of abilities. If you focus more on how to maximize the most of what you DO have, you’ll be a lot happier.”
    This is such great advice. I really wish I could go into every jr high and high school in America and hand every girl a piece of paper with this written on it.

    I think the most important thing to do to stay confident in this internet world is to be proud of who you are. Maybe your friend is in Bali wake surfing. Well you have a gorgeous garden you have worked really hard on, be proud and display it. I promise when your friend gets home from her trip she will compliment your garden. Everyone is jealous of everyone and everyone wants what they don’t have. OWN WHAT YOU DO HAVE!! Be proud of yourself and be happy for others. If you are so jealous…. stop whining and start saving you could be in Bali this time next year.

    Your friends boobs are bigger than yours? Well I promise you that she freakin’ hates them half the time. She is super jealous of you rockin’ calves and hair. Everyone is jealous because NO ONE is perfect. YOU ARE YOUR OWN WORST CRITIC!

    Sorry for the novel. I experience a lot of ‘fomo’ when on instagram and I have really spent a lot of time wondering why. This makes me want to create a post on my own blog! Haha don’t be surprised if you see this exact comment again later today on my blog! HAHA!

    Like

    1. chelsamessinger

      Hey thanks for your response! I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels this way! That was the reason I wanted to write this. It’s literally my thoughts every time I’m on social media haha. I can’t even imagine being a teenager on social media. I’m almost 30 and I feel like a well-adjusted adult until I look at Instagram haha

      Liked by 1 person

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