Do you ever stop to think how much time you spend on social media? How many times a day you scroll through Instagram, check the notifications from Facebook, reply to messages on WhatsApp or just see how everyone else posts about their promotions on LinkedIn.
About two months ago I realised that I was spending way too much time on Instagram, constantly thinking about what I could post to get more followers and wondering why it seems like everyone else is doing so much better than I am. And there I was thinking that I had learnt how to not compare myself to others. I noticed that lots of things I did, I did for a nice photo, and if something wasn’t ”Instagrammy” I wouldn’t even want take a photo, not even for memories.
Comparing ourselves to others makes us focus on the negative things in ourselves and our lives and makes it more difficult to appreciate who we are and what we have. And as we all know, social media is especially tricky because it easily makes everyone else’s life seem more glamorous than it actually is. What we see on social media is only a part of the real thing yet it’s so easy to trick people to believe it’s the whole thing. Another thing is that real moments become more and more difficult to enjoy since we want to be there to take a photo to show to the world.
For some reason I’ve started to compare myself to others so much more here in Australia. Maybe it’s because I don’t have a deep feeling of belonging and I feel different from others. I even got annoyed at myself while I was doing yoga and was very unable to master a very difficult asana even though that is not the purpose of yoga AT ALL. But because my Instagram feed is full of people doing those asanas, I easily start thinking that I should be able to master them too.
I’ve also struggled with working in jobs that don’t really feel like mine mostly because I’ve compred my life to the life of my friends back home or the life I would be living back home where I’d be doing my masters degree. And it’s so weird because at the same time I 100% stand behind my decision to move here and am so super happy to be here and live here.
Anyway, back to social media. After realising how much it started to affect me, I decided to take a break and log out of Instagram for two weeks. And that worked wonders!!!! Everything I did, I did for myself and enjoyed the moments so much more. And in a way I felt much more content with my life when I didn’t constantly see photos and posts about what is missing from my life or about how my life should look like. After the break I haven’t even been on social media that much and it’s been easier to turn my phone off.
I’m thinking about taking another break soon just to get some perspective on things again. And I really recommend this for everyone! For me Instagram is the social media I use the most but if for example Facebook or Snapchat is that for you, maybe it would be a good idea to log out for a little while and see how it affects you! Also, just turning off all the notifications or muting your group chats on whatsapp can be a good first step.