The Real Reality – The Art of How We See
Recently I wrote a post on social media about the “real me” including a selfie I took of myself with no filter, no make-up, and no excuses. I posted that picture after being inspired by a few close friends of mine who were doing the same. They decided to showcase their true self. Not just physically, but also emotionally by opening up about what was going on in their life.
There is something refreshing about putting it all out there for the world to see. Not only that, but doing so can also possibly help other people deal with their struggles and setbacks as a reminder that we aren’t alone with what we’re dealing with.
When our newsfeed is filled with images of people who seem to have it all together, it’s easy to get down on ourselves and wonder what we’re doing wrong. We strive to have what they ‘have,’ when really what they have isn’t even what we see on social media.
We only get to see the highlight reel. We don’t see the other 23-and-a-half hours in the day. The fights with the spouse, the screaming kids, or the 18 outtakes of photos that they didn’t decide to post.
I watched a documentary recently called Happy and in it, they talked about some of the most important factors that aid in happiness. One of those was connection. Human Beings have an instinctive desire to feel connected to others. We long for a sense of community and to feel understood. And while connection and community may be an intention with social media, in a way, it is actually removing us further from that relationship and replacing it with more egos.
Not only that but in addition to the Instagram filters, we bring along our personal filters that adds to the distorted views. We project our idea of what these images must mean, including the validation of our own inadequacies.
“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” – Anais Nin
I don’t mean just to pick on social media either. This can show up in other ways too. People are great at protecting themselves and only showing what they want others to see.
Here’s the best part, though. None of it matters! Yes, I’m driving that point home with an exclamation mark!
We know this to be true and we know in our heart of hearts that all that matters is the value that we put on ourselves, but yet we hold ourselves up to this social media (aka imaginary) measuring stick and feel that anything less is just that. Less.
Let’s get honest about who we are, what our life is really like, and try to encourage our friends to do the same. Let’s support one another and let go of the judgments and the attachments to what it all means. Let’s get vulnerable, and applaud everyone else who does the same.
I have no idea how many people I touch with my blogs and my social media, but the last thing on earth that I want is for someone to think that I have it together all of the time. So I’m going to lay down my metal armor and get honest about a few things for you now.
- I’m the yoga girl that practices at home in my sweatpants. I can barely get my legs off the ground in crow pose, and am scared of doing headstands.
- I worry about my future and finances and may need to take a part-time J.O.B. to sustain myself and I think that makes me look like a failure if I do.
- My dog can be reactive with other dogs, and I feel shame every time I pass another dog on the street that she reacts to. I feel like I let her down or that I should be able to “fix” her.
These are just a few of the things that are real and raw for me and I hope that they inspired you even just a little to expose yourself too. Nothing bad will happen, I promise! Look, I’m still alive!
Lastly, I ask that you consider this; everything that exists, just is. It is not good or bad until we make it so. We create subjective realities based on our own inner dialogues and perceptions. If we can take it back to just being and let go of the judgment and association, wouldn’t the world be a much more peaceful place?
Maybe to start, can you take a look at where you’re judging and see if you can let some of that go?
And the next time you find yourself stuck in a social media judgment storm, ask yourself, does this really even matter?