We are glued to our screens. 24/7. All of us. I know hardly anybody (the elderly excluded) who isn’t. Do you think that’s healthy? How can it even be?
Over the past few days, I’ve come across quite a few blogposts, articles and quotes about people reviewing their relationship with social media and reality. It’s a coincidence I guess, but it seems as if this currently was a real issue. Well, it doesn’t just seem to be one – it is! The internet (or our smartphone) has opened the gate to the world to us. We can read, write, twitter, record, watch and see whatever we desire. It feels as if we had the world at our feet. But have you ever asked yourself what kind of world this is? Is it really the one we’re living in – or is it just a projection of it?
This reminds me a little bit of Plato’s Cave Analogy – something we had talked about in school a long time ago. And the idea is indeed very, very old – and yet more up-to-date than ever. I mean, how amazing is this? Okay, but enough drooling over this philosophical concept for now. The key message is this: The reality as we’re perceiving it – isn’t necessarily what reality really looks like. It might be just another projection of our ideas, wishes and way of thinking. And you know what? That is okay. It would be boring, if we didn’t all live in our own little universe.
The actual issue – in my opinion – lies rather in the details. It’s the everyday inputs, we’re feeding our mind with that shape this little universe. All the information we’re confronted with every single day, will be processed and evaluated in our brains. So, you become what you take in. It’s kind of the same principle as the saying ‘You are what you eat’. So, naturally with food, when trying to be healthier and fitter, we try to opt for healthier options (food-wise) more often and make sure to move throughout the day. But what choices do we make about our mental consumption? Most of the time – none. We consume what’s being put in front of us – be it by Facebook’s suggestions, our Instagram feed, Youtube video loops or friends. And we hardly ever think about what those impressions result in. I’m no exception from that, really. But after having read all those articles over the past few days, at least I want to try being more selective about the information flood coming my way. Because we all can be. Try to be a little more critical about what you’re looking at over the next few days. Is this perfectly beautiful person really adding any value to my life? Or is it just making me feeling less happy about myself by comparison? Do I really need all the stuff I’m looking at due to all the advertising (perfectly curated for me)? What are the things bringing value and inspiration to my life? Cherish those – and get rid of the rest. Social media isn’t all bad and the end of the world anyway – it also holds great potential – but be selective. It’s worth it. Because the overall impact is far bigger than we expect. So, be picky about your time, energy and attention.
So, let’s see what this experiment will bring – I’ll keep you updated. And let me know what you think about the whole social media reality craze in the comments or send me a message!
Photo by Lars Karlsson