I love me some Instagram. And as a humanities major, I love me pretty curated pictures. But that is NOT life.
1:1 is the aspect ratio on Instagram, if you weren’t aware. That pretty, perfect square. If you ask many influencers, they will say you need a curated feed. One that is themed if you will- all peach or all forest green, or all black and white. Or further- all #boymom or all #girlmom or all #strong or all #brave or all #bae or all #goals. No, that is not real life.
I was talking with a friend the other day about our pretty online lives. (I know this isn’t a new topic but it persists.) We love to share a curated version of our self but also that only lets the friends that lie on the outer circle of our friendships views into our lives though a port hole. We might look like we had a great vacation in the mountains hiking, picnicking, and swimming in the lake but really our kid had diarrhea and we were visiting a family member who was laid up on the couch from an injury so it was hard and insulated and not as fun as it could have been. You don’t usually get the full picture of someones life until you talk with them about it.
Although, I love the new opportunity to share our “real” lives through the portals of “stories” on Facebook and Insta. It allows us to show our real lives, albeit, for 24 hours, but it doesn’t muck up our feeds. The “professionals” will tell you these stories are for sharing flash sales or pertinent news that will be obsolete within the next day.
- “Instagram Stories provide an excellent opportunity for you to show your (or your influencers’) creativity to your target audience. These are not just click-post-and-hope images, which brands sometimes upload. Instagram Stories are a combination of images and videos that work together, along with any necessary commentary overlay, to tell today’s story.” -from InflucencerMarketingHub.com
But is that how we live our lives?
Do we go through the motions of one day and completely forget about it the next? No! Sure, I don’t need to relive my latte or smoothie but would I benefit from my friends and followers knowing about my daily hardships and why the hustle is exhausting or the support from my family is so necessary and how I couldn’t do it without them or the nanny who is at our home 14 hours a day while I get my workout in and my spray tan and my meals are delivered and my personal assistant does my online clothes shopping etc etc etc. (PS this is NOT me, this is the ‘influencers” many of us follow). Our lives are not as pretty and simple as the 1:1 we see on Insta and this IS OK! You are allowed to be messy AND curated. You’re allowed to balance life AND work. You’re allowed to be so many things. But please, please, please, dont let those beautiful, edited, curated, things that are your litmus test on being successful or worthy. Those squares are not the whole story. Be an AND!
Here’s my AND list:
Curvy AND Fit
Messy AND Motivated
Caring AND Annoyed
Restless AND Steady
Honest AND Kind
Authentic AND Beautiful
Plus so many more.
Have a REAL weekend, y’all.
With honesty and kindness.