SOCIAL MEDIA LOCKDOWN

Yesterday I saw a post from a vague acquaintance on Instagram which said:

‘If everybody likes you, you have a serious problem my friend!

No matter what you do, people will always judge

So why stop being you?’

And went on to ask everyone if they were interested to hear about the experiences on Instagram.

Are we all actually interested? I asked myself. I found it a strange post to be honest, because isn’t that what we all want, to be liked by lots of people. It’s good for our self-esteem isn’t it? We used to think that was so important … but is it really?

It made me think that in these difficult times, when social media has actually become so popular because we want to share our lives with literally everyone, then aren’t we making ourselves so much more vulnerable and opening the doors for even more judgment?

I think so, because that is human nature. Welcome to Planet Earth anno 2020. This is what life was all about. I say ‘was’ because I can see that everyone is changing so much because of the worldwide lockdown. I have written in previous blogs about being judged on our success and status as opposed to the person we truly are.

I think the thing that struck me the most about the comment above, was, ‘so why stop being you?’ Yes, why indeed and why should you? I think a lot of people are coming to the conclusion that you ‘take me as you see me’. People do not want to be judged anymore by anyone on their so-called social status. All that rubbish is becoming less and less important each and every day. If there is one thing we have learned from this crisis, it is re-evaluating ourselves big time. Acting out our own little play in life, doesn’t seem to count anymore. Everyone was suddenly confronted by their own drama and even more so, by their vulnerability.

Where it used to be important to be ‘liked’ and have some kind of social status, the bigger the better, now we are all on the same spot. We are vulnerable and in the same position. It has been hard, even if not nearly impossible for some people to get off their little rosy cloud and come back to earth. The feeling of being better than someone else. No, that is all over now. Because we came to the very hard realization that there was only one thing that was important and that was our health!

Sometimes I actually wonder what life would be like with a social media lockdown. Why do we all have the feeling that we have to share so much. I know personally even I do, but more as a promotion for my work as opposed to a daily gallery of what I am eating, where I am going and who is with me. I really dislike all these ‘posed photos’ which appear in the thousands every day. Then get liked by literally thousands and even worse, thousands feel obliged to comment. Why? Is their life so totally boring they have nothing else to do? It’s a full-time job for some people sifting through their social media. When one post multiplies to thousands of likes and comments.

But does it make you any better a person, by the number of social media likes? I don’t think so. 

When I was a small child, keeping in touch with your relatives and friends was by letter. Yes, there was a postal service, we had sort of moved on from the ‘pigeon post’. But practically no one had even a phone at home. There were telephone boxes here and there and you could call up people from there. 

We had never heard of anything like the Internet, WiFi or smartphones. And the next generation up from me have grown up with this from childhood. Now small children have their own Ipad pre-school and you are not part of the in-crowd without a smartphone at primary school. 

Don’t misunderstand me I am all for progress and such like, but sometimes I think, isn’t it all a bit too much sometimes? Why post something like the comment at the beginning on social media and then spend your day, making meaningless replies, and being literally inundated with total crap comments from people who come across as being totally brain dead!

Oh dear, such judgement from my side, but I am trying to make the point here.

Where are our true values? They should be our family, our loved ones, our friends, colleagues and neighbors, in other words ‘our fellow man’ and actually caring for each other. This is the way forward as I see it, working together, changing what was happening in the world and coming back to what is actually important in life. Creating much more respect for one another for starters.

Each and every time I read or hear on the news about the latest internet hack or scam, I really think we do this ourselves. We share far too much in far too big circles. Now don’t get me wrong, it is good to share, but make sure you share the right things. The important things.

The post I mentioned above got 16.772 likes and 469 comments within one single hour!

Sort of puts things into perspective doesn’t it. I wonder if the person who posted thinks the same? Probably not because then you have to ask the question: why did I post it in the first place. Because it boosts the ego. And living from the ego is over. There is no place for ego anymore. Of course we will always have an ego, but there are so many positive ways to feed it, in a proper way. Self-esteem and self-love are important when put in the right perspective.

So that is my question to you all today? Could you cope with a social media lockdown?

Could you actually put your smartphone, Ipad, tablet, laptop or whatever to one side for a whole day? The answer is probably not, because we have this fear of missing out on something. I know I try and discipline myself when I am working to not constantly either pick up my phone or even answer it, but it is not an easy thing to do. But we should. We should spend more time doing things together, it is so much more rewarding and important than some stupid post on the social media circuit.

I remember back in about the year 2000 having lunch with a friend and a representative of a local bank about investments and he sat and said that the future lay in mobile phones. At the time, there was only the famous Nokia mobile phone. Smartphones had not arrived on the scene just yet. I remember listening to him and thinking, yes sure… and he described that we would be able to do with a smartphone soon. But guess what we can, he was right, you can virtually ‘organize’ your entire life with such a gadget.

To my mind this takes away a lot of personal contact. I find myself often typing short messages into WhatsApp as opposed to picking up the phone and having a proper conversation with someone. Do you?

Maybe that is one of the things we can literally move from the word CHANGE TO CHANCE (see my last blog).

The big question we all need to ask ourselves is am I worth it? If you can answer that with a resounding YES maybe it is time to re-evaluate?

So there is not a need to stop being you, but a need to makes a new and better version of yourself ?

Images: Google

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Jill Kramer

Hi! I'm Jill and I'm a passionate author of books, short stories, columns and blogs.

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