I have a love/hate relationship with social media. Okay, maybe not hate. 95% of me loves social media and the other 5% is not such a fan. While social media is an outlet for creativity and connection, it can also become a platform for comparison and unrealistic expectations. I’ve been thinking a lot about how social media shapes the perceptions of ourselves and of our life. With that in mind, I’m revealing the do’s and don’ts of social media to maintain balance, happiness, and bring you up to 100% love!
Do: Use social media to connect with others
Okay, you’re probably like duh, obviously social media is used to connect with people. But, I’ve found social media allows me to meet other friends, professionals, and creatives that are outside my friend group. Namely, on Instagram. I’ve met so many amazing bloggers, stylists, photographers, business women, and entreprenuers all through Instagram, Facebook groups, and LinkedIn connections. I encourage you to utilize Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn to find people other people you can connect with that have similar interests.
Do: Utilize social media to showcase your skills
I love Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Tumblr, and Pinterest because of their capability to showcase your creativity, knowledge, or skill set to a large audience. If you’re using social media just to connect with friends, family, and post some pics of you and your dog, that’s perfectly fine. However, I encourage you to use social media to showcase your talents and skills even if it’s as simple as tweeting your favorite business articles, writing a post on LinkedIn, or capturing your amazing latte art pics on Instagram.
Don’t: Think social media is a reflection of someone’s entire life
We have all seen that girl’s post with her hot husband on a beach vacation with the latest Gucci handbag and perfectly undone beach waves and thought, ‘ugh, her life is perfect!’ Yeah, I’m guilty of that! But we have to remember, social media only captures the highlights of people’s lives. And while we may feel a little envious of Gucci girl and her perfect beach waves, we have to remember not to compare her 1 second snapshot to our entire lives. It’s a totally unfair and unjustified comparison that is almost a little silly when you think about it.
Don’t: Let social media represent your perception of what is normal
#Fitspo #MakeupLife #WhatIWore #Nofilter ….ah, it can get a little overwhelming. Today, we spend a lot of time scrolling through our phones seeing other people’s picture perfect selfies, flexed abs in the mirror, and decorated houses. We scroll and double tap so much on occasion, we start to think what we see on social media is the status quo or what everyone is doing. For me, after looking at 1,000 flawlessly decorated and clean bedrooms on Pinterest, I look at my room and think…I have to redecorate! I have to remember that social media often promotes the best of the best…hair, makeup, homes, outfits. There’s nothing wrong with that and we should absolutely enjoy them but remember it’s the best of the best, not the standard.
Don’t: Allow social media to be a metric to determine your worth
Everyone has posted that photo or tweeted something that you thought was your best work only to have the likes, comments, or retweets slowly trickle in. All of a sudden we get panicked and think, why don’t people like this? Should I delete my photo? Do I suck? Then, we start feeling bad or questioning ourselves. As hard as it can be (especially as a blogger) don’t let social media determine how you feel about yourself. You are so much more than that!
Do: Use social media to lift others up, not down
Don’t be a troll. But also, use social media to lift others up. Leave a nice comment on an Instagram picture, congratulate someone’s promotion on LinkedIn, or provide a little encouragement on Facebook. If social media is truly meant to connect with others, then do so in a friendly, encouraging way.
Do: Remember balance is key!
Overall, I really like social media. I love being creative, meeting new bloggers through Instagram, and genuinly connecting with others. However, like almost everything in life…ice cream, wine, and shopping…balance is key. Next time you’re scrolling and liking remember to,
- Enjoy beautiful Instagram photos, educated LinkedIn posts, and gorgeous Pinterest bedrooms without comparing yourself or skewing your perception of your life.
- Use social media to connect with others who may be outside your direct friend group.
- Utilize social media to showcase your skills, talents, and knowledge to a wider audience. You’re amazing remember?
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