I was sitting in front of my computer, scrolling through social media. Posts after posts, tweets after tweets. Pictures of conventionally attractive and photogenic women bathing in the sun, smiling and enjoying glasses of cocktail. The skies are always blue and the places are always exotic.
It hurt. It struck me so hard to think that my life was an unexciting, monotonous shitshow. I had nothing to look forward to. I hadn’t been to all the amazing places. I hadn’t been the most attractive person. I was just an unhappy person with an unrelenting desire to get more. But there was no way I could get anything I wanted. Those were simply unrealistic fantasies, only to be fulfilled in one’s boundless realm of imagination. Those were the uncharted waters in the callous ocean, the elusive oasis in the desert. I was the misguided and irascible treasure hunter, spending hours and hours looking for the exalted box of happiness.
Then, I immersed myself in books and conversations with people. Philosophy was the fountain of knowledge for me. It gave me another perspective that matches the reality in the most accurate way possible. Everything can be seen as a spectrum. And the whole shebang of our existence is an unquantifiable mix of spectra.
I stopped liking other people’s posts, looking at their pictures, comparing myself to them. And it felt calm and refreshing. The clarity and the absence of jealousy. The bigger picture as well as the minute details.
I had projected my worst and compared it to someone else’s best. Social media is a kaleidoscopic lens into the lives of other people. It’s never the reality. It only shows you the best, the most interesting, the most attractive side of people. It’s not even half of the story. It’s only the highlight. It’s an intriguing snippet of your favourite thriller series. The epic trailer of a video game. The chorus of a song.
Social media is the easiest and most addictive way to get depressed. Its nature of effortlessness is both its strength and weakness. It allows us to absorb information with the click of a button, opening up a world we’ve never been exposed to. It’s also a vortex of unhappiness purporting to make us happy. Its foundation of success is our fear of missing out as well as the narcissistic nature of human beings. We are afraid of not being trendy so we turn to social media to follow the next best fashion, learn about what the celebrities are doing. We post pictures of ourselves laughing and having fun with our friends, images of our last holiday destinations. Doing so lets us get the attention of others and shows people how amazing our lives are.
Every minute spent on social media is every minute spent watching someone else’s highlight of life, while not using that precious time to achieve your dreams. Imagine how much happier you would feel, how much closer you would be to your dreams if all the time spent on social media is spent thinking about your own lives, focusing on your craft, healing your mental well-being, working on yourselves, doing something you truly like.
By doing so, you will regain the freedom of not having to compare, the invaluable time to enjoy lives. You won’t have to think about taking the perfect picture when you travel. You just marvel at what nature has to offer.
Most importantly, you get to start living and be the protagonist of your own show, rather than one of the many spectators of someone else’s game.