I took the last week off social media and couldn’t believe how much more grateful and joyful I was.
It reminded me that comparison is a super slippery slope, and exposed how much pressure there is (or at least I feel) to put forward all the great and wonderful things in my life, which paints a totally unrealistic picture, and left me feeling like I wasn’t being real.
Plus, with everyone’s greatness constantly in your face, especially when your life seems ordinary or unexciting or you’re going through a stressful time, it can make you feel pretty horrible about yourself or others pretty quickly rather than excited for and motivated to encourage them.
How we let social media make us feel and the way we use it is a choice, and I think I had forgotten that.
Today, I want to say a few things this social-media-free week has put on my heart that might be what you need to hear, or maybe they’re for you to share with someone else.
You are gorgeous. No matter if you feel that way or not, if you’ve got a few pounds you want to lose or you’re having a bad hair day (or month), you are beautiful. Besides that, it’s ok to want to feel pretty. Granted, it can swing too far in the opposite direction (can’t everything?), but sometimes we’re sent the message that it’s shallow to want to look put together. It’s not. It can lead to a lot of good in your life and others’ lives when you choose to see yourself in a good light and work on things you want to change rather than focusing on flaws.
Choosing gratefulness is hard, but worth it. And sometimes that means taking a break from something that’s cultivating ungratefulness. Like social media or shopping. That doesn’t have to mean you give it up forever, but even a few days without can help you gain some clarity and reframe things.
Habits form one tiny baby step at a time. Good or bad, we grow habits with each choice we make. At the beginning of this week, I would find my fingers scrolling through my phone to get to that Instagram icon almost as if they had a mind of their own. I had no idea how much of a habit I had made checking that feed. Just a few days later, I haven’t had the urge at all. I’m actually a little nervous about going back to social media, because I’ve found that it’s so much easier to completely cut something out than do it in moderation. But most things can’t be cut out of life, so…
- What is one thing you’re cultivating right now that you’re excited about? What’s working and how can you copy that with something else in your life you want to see more of?
- What is one thing you want to cut off or pare down? What’s the first step toward doing that? (Think of something that’s quick, like deleting an app from your phone for a week or turning off the computer or tv right now and doing something that gives you energy.)
Write down your thoughts and schedule a time to do them right now. Action beats intention every time.