As a society we are censoring our lives via online posts, I know I’m guilty of it.
From #OOTD posts to #foodporn we post things to convince followers we have the perfect lives (do I need to mention Essena O’Neill?) we do this to build a reputation of ourselves and gain approval from people we don’t even know. As a society we are censoring our lives via online posts, I know I’m guilty of it.
Posting selfies, food posts and perfectly put together minimal wardrobes has become the norm, we all compare ourselves to others and I believe the culture of social media has a lot of influence on certain people’s mental well-being but more on that on a later date.
What I really want to address in the post is how selfies have no relationship with the amount of self-confidence a person has. The other day a friend said to me “I wish I was one of those girls who had enough self-confidence to post selfies all the time”, I know this wasn’t aimed at me but as a girl who posts her fair share of selfies I felt the obligation to point out that selfies ≠ self-confidence.
In no way am I saying that girls who post loads of selfies have no self-esteem; there are so many uplifting body-positive women I follow who encourage self-confidence and self-love. This is just my perception.
After years of posting selfies I only recently realised that I was basing my self-worth and happiness on the amount of engagement a selfie got. If I was feeling down about myself I would post, what I classed as a good selfie (one that would take so many attempts to take) or if I was ‘feeling myself’ I would take a picture and post it and then wait for people to like it. If a photo I posted got less likes than I wanted I’d be mortified that I’d even posted such an ugly photo and end up feeling awful about myself but on the other hand if a selfie got more likes than usual I’d think to myself “I don’t even look like that in real life, I’m basically catfishing the internet.
I would use Instagram to lift how I felt about myself, I would post a photo and feel happy and good about myself for about half an hour while people were liking it or I’d be frantically refreshing the screen hoping someone else likes it, it wasn’t a healthy relationship to have with an app.
When the realisation of what I was doing hit I started to see how ridiculous I was being, now I only post photos which I enjoy (selfies included) whether it’s the composition of a photo or a memory I want to document or even just something I want to show off and I mean we all want our feed to look good right? However, now I don’t care about the number of likes or comments I get, if I like that photo that’s all that matters (although I am still guilty of taking 100 pictures just to get one good selfie).
Don’t let the internet be in control of how you feel about yourself, you don’t need likes from people you don’t even know to make you feel good.