Gone are the days where our parents screamed at us to get off the computer so they could use the phone without hearing that deafening dial up internet tone. Today it’s all about Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook, trending topics, and influencers. I can’t go on Instagram without seeing a gorgeous skinny blonde girl in an expensive flowy gown standing in front of a gorgeous landscape somewhere across the world. Unfortunately, a lot of people are more concerned with how great their photos turn out rather than living in the moment and taking in a raw experience.
We are all guilty of doing it. Make our friends take a few extra photos of us, extremely posed, in front of a famous building or beach. Why are we so focused on the highlight reel we show to the public? And WHY oh why do I see skin smoothed out to the point of looking like a Barbie doll?
I feel very fortunate that being an early 90’s baby means I didn’t fully grow up immersed in technology. My friends and I went to the park every night, played grounders, and went home when the street lights came on. The last thing on my mind was scrolling through Insta to see what new celebrity was advertising sugar bear hair pills. The fact that very young girls and boys are surrounded every second by these photos of size 0 bodies, flawless skin, and perfect hair can’t be good for their self confidence. There is already enough pressure on kids growing up to be perfect, they don’t need this unrealistic body ideal surrounding them 24/7.
On my most recent post on Instagram I spoke from the heart about photo manipulation, body image, and showing the true YOU. (If you want to take a look, here is the link). I feel so strongly about being in the moment and being our true selves, but as many of us do, I sometimes get caught up in the photo taking and filter adding. As much as we only show our best side to the public on social media, I believe we need to show the truth. I’ve been seeing more and more REAL posts, women showing their unfiltered bodies, in different poses showing how it affects how they look, and I love it. I stand by the fact that we should not be editing out our imperfections so we seem perfect to people who view our social pages. I feel as though our attention needs to shift from people promoting these impossible bodies to people speaking the truth! I remember coming home from my time abroad, and as I spoke to my friends, they told me their favourite thing I posted from my whole trip was this post. Me showing the truth about how I look the majority of the time while I travel, and the behind the scenes, that it isn’t as glamorous as everyone makes it out to be. Yes it was still so amazing and was an experience of a lifetime, but it wasn’t perfect and I felt as though I needed to show a side of me that wasn’t just a highlight reel.
I wonder when these popular social media influencers will begin to shift their focus from perfect lives to real life. I believe this needs to happen sooner than later with younger and younger audiences viewing their posts. I want teenagers and adolescents now to have realer role models who speak about their struggles and triumphs, because we all deal with the ups and downs of life, even when you have millions of followers.
Let me know what you think about the subject in the comments!