Online, we have the option to reinvent ourselves to be whatever version of ourselves we want.
In theory, we could be a completely different person, we could twist the truth, or we could exaggerate our lives.
Maybe you do that, or maybe not. It’s pretty black-and-white.
But I think there’s something that everyone’s guilty of in our online presence.
The illusion of perfection.
We see all the Instagram photos, the Facebook posts, the tweets.
It’s like everyone has their lives in a beautiful box, tied with a red silk bow.
Picturesque family vacations, big smiles, happy couples, witty conversations…those are the things we post about.
We don’t want people to see us in our frumpy PJ’s, no-makeup faces, the arguments with people in our family, or the way we’re totally NOT #amwriting but are actually #watchingnetflix.
It’s not like we’re these huge liars who live a double life.
A lot of us aren’t pretending to live perfect lives. We’re not trying to hide.
But…we don’t exactly want people to see us at our low-points either.
On the flip side:
We don’t want to post non-aesthetic pictures on Instagram, because…what’s the point?
Why make a 200 word Facebook post about how we’re sitting in bed, eating cereal, and binge-watching Once Upon a Time?
Because here’s the thing: THE INTERNET SHOULDN’T BE OUR LIVES.
In our sect of the interwebs, a lot of us use these social platforms as a creative outlet.
It’s a way to express ourselves, not be completely transparent with the entire world.
So, yes, we’re going to post good and lovely and happy things, because social media is our canvas, and our everyday life is our paint.
For me personally, I post a lot of pictures of the food I make because I enjoy baking (and now cooking! Yay!). The pictures are usually of the nicely decorated things. I didn’t post a picture of all the cookies I messed up on, or the hashbrown casserole I made last week that literally tasted like watery onions.
I’m not embarrassed about my mistakes, nor am I trying to hide my imperfection from the world.
I just didn’t didn’t share it.
Even though you may not be buying into your own perfection…keep other people in mind.
That Twitter friend who is BOMB AESTHETIC may be struggling.
Don’t get lost in thinking that everyone has it together, because you might be missing out on being able to encourage someone.
(Side note: NOBODY has it together, no matter how amazing their social media is)
Here’s my conclusion:
I’ve been thinking about this topic for a long time.
What’s the balance?
Where’s the line between living a lie and being real?
Because I don’t post false things, nor do I try to be someone I’m not…but I definitely leave out all the things that are…less-than-aesthetic, if you know what I mean.
I don’t openly talk about the sins the Lord has revealed to me, the issues I’m dealing with, or the constant state of my spiritual well-being in a fallen world.
I tend to post or create or write when I’m feeling happy, or when something nice happens.
So does that mean I should start posting gritty things on Twitter just to shatter the idea that my life is perfect?
I don’t think so.
I think it boils down to a heart issue.
Who are you when you’re having a discussion through dm or text? When a friend is sharing their heart? How do you respond?
Do you still act like you’ve got it all together? Or do you humble yourself and share where you’re struggling, or what the Lord has taught you?
Because I look at it this way: The things on your timeline (or whatever you post) is like what your wear on the outside. Hopefully, you dress nice when you go outside the house, you take the time to tailor your look.
We don’t dress like slobs on our way to dinner because that’s “who we really are”.
That idea is ridiculous.
Social media is like that. We post funny, wholesome, kind things because that’s all outward. It’s important, don’t get me wrong, but it’s just a platform.
Now, how we act on personal levels is our true heart. No one can tell who we truly are just by looking at our clothes. It takes conversation to get to know someone.
It’s 100% okay to post the good things online. And for me personally…it’s a reminder of how amazing my life is, despite the valleys. Instagram photos and tweets hold a lot of memories, too.
But check yourself.
Do you keep acting like everything’s okay when you’re talking with someone?
Don’t let what you wear define you.
Social media is not your real life, nor do you have to display your entire reality on there.
But do have a heart of transparency.
I’d love to hear your thoughts! How would you respond to the illusions of the internet?