My car comes to a long awaited halt as I shift into park and hear the final sounds of the engine tapering off into an all consuming silence. As a person who is roughly 20 percent extraverted and 80 percent introverted, coming home after a long day of studying, working and all of the above, is a feeling like no other. My home is essentially my own personal refueling station, selling only the highest premium fuel to revive me from holding my “I’m Outgoing, I Promise” sign all day.
After finishing up my nightly routine of cleansing, exfoliating, and contemplating whether or not I should rewatch the entire season of Stranger Things, I crawl into bed and scroll through my Snapchat Story feed—the part of my routine that I usually end up regretting.
“I am miserable.”
Almost every time I go on social media, specifically Snapchat, I come away believing one thing: All of my friends are happy, and I am miserable.
It is unbelievable that my wonderful day of meeting new people, sharing smiles and enjoying life after high school could be flushed down the drain by watching two minutes of pixelized images on a 4.7-inch display.
I was gifted with a moment of clarity when my Speech Communications professor assigned us to write about how social media influences our self-concept.
As human beings, we use comparison to learn from each other and ultimately advance as a species. This tool turns into a mass murdering weapon when we use prototypical data to relate to.
A few minutes before that girl posted a pretty selfie, her dad canceled their dinner plans for the fifth time in a row.
Right after he posted a video of him drinking with his friends, his buddy was rushed to the emergency room for alcohol poisoning.
Your friends posted a video of them dancing at a bar, but shortly thereafter they were kicked out for being under aged.
“A grouping of pixels is not your reality.”
Just because someone’s post covers your entire screen does not mean it represents the whole picture. Layers on top of layers exist—some known and some locked away and forgotten but forever present. The grouping of pixels you see on the screen is not your reality.
Your truest world has an emotional ecosystem of happiness, disappointment, curiosity, frustration and it is all good because it is yours.
If only we had a bigger screen…