There's been a lot of discussion lately surrounding social media and its authenticity, or lack thereof. As someone whose job entails the creation of content and documenting glimpses into my life, I have an interesting perspective when it comes to social media versus real life. I know firsthand what I share on my social channels and blog is not a complete portrayal of my life. The snippets I choose to share are the best of the best of what's going on - and such a small portion, relatively, of the minutes and moments that make up my days.
Regardless of whether or not someone is a professional creator/curator of content, feeling negative comparisons to someone's social media page is something that affects everyone these days (myself included). I think it's important to keep a few things in mind.
The first is to remember that almost everything you see is an idealized version of someone's life. It's so easy to go to someone's page and think they lead a perfect existence. Delicious dinners! Friends laughing and smiling! Couples on vacation! It's generally the happiest of times and moments that are shared, but that doesn't mean their lives are a never-ending marathon of fun and beauty. I sometimes experience FOMO when I see a group of girlfriends having Bloody Mary's on the beach and I haven't even showered in a day (or two). But I try not to get down on myself because a feed of carefully selected pictures isn't a realistic glimpse into anyone's life.
From the standpoint of creating content, I think it's beneficial to consciously take breaks. Not every "cute" thing I experience necessitates being captured. While I feel a self-imposed pressure to constantly provide new content, it's important to live in the moment and appreciate a special event outside the lens of Instagram.
Lastly, set limits to prevent social media binges that could potentially spiral downward. It can be a bit scary when you find yourself stuck in a scroll-hole of stalking, feeling envious of someone else's representation of themselves. I work at shutting down my social media consumption after 8p, opting for something more self contained, like reading a book, or catching up on our overflowing DVR. Sometimes you just have to quit and stop yourself from getting too wrapped up in virtual reality.