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Monday 8 April 2013

Social Media amplifying the idea of "the grass is always greener"

I ran out of lives on Candy Crush and was scrolling through my facebook feed when I came across this post.

Such an interesting read...

The internet is like a first date. You show your best side, only revealing the good things about you,  a part of who you are, but not everything. On a date, this gives a "good impression" and maybe leads to a second date. On the internet, this leads to "the grass is always greener" syndrome. Bored and alone, scrolling through facebook, twitter, instagram or other social media sites, people are inundated with "the best side" of other people's lives and can easily start to feel in a rut...

This made me wonder about my middle schoolers and even my own daughter.

Her friends have this, or do this and she wants this or that.

This "grass is always greener" idea has been around forever, but with technology "rubbing your face" into other people's lives (or the life they choose to share) it becomes more of a problem.

I encourage you to check out this article - I think it is an interesting piece and certainly has me thinking more about the impact of social media (which I am a huge fan of!)

Read this article

I keep having the same conversation over and over. It starts like this: “I gave up Facebook for Lent, and I realized I’m a lot happier without it.” Or like this, “Pinterest makes me hate my house.” Or like this: “I stopped following a friend on Instagram, and now that I don’t see nonstop snapshots of her perfect life, I like her better.”

Yikes. This is a thing. This is coming up in conversation after conversation. The danger of the internet is that it’s very very easy to tell partial truths—to show the fabulous meal but not the mess to clean up afterward. To display the smiling couple-shot, but not the fight you had three days ago. To offer up the sparkly milestones but not the spiraling meltdowns.

My life looks better on the Internet than it does in real life. Everyone’s life looks better on the internet than it does in real life. The Internet is partial truths—we get to decide what people see and what they don’t. That’s why it’s safer short term. And that’s why it’s much, much more dangerous long term.

Because community—the rich kind, the transforming kind, the valuable and difficult kind—doesn’t happen in partial truths and well-edited photo collections on Instagram. Community happens when we hear each other’s actual voices, when we enter one another’s actual homes, with actual messes, around actual tables telling stories that ramble on beyond 140 pithy characters.

But seeing the best possible, often-unrealistic, half-truth version of other peoples’ lives isn’t the only danger of the Internet. Our envy buttons also get pushed because we rarely check Facebook when we’re having our own peak experiences. We check it when we’re bored and when we’re lonely, and it intensifies that boredom and loneliness.

When you’re laughing at a meal with friends, are you scrolling through Pinterest? When you’re in labor with your much-prayed-for-deeply-loved child, are you checking to see what’s happening on Instagram? Of course not. We check in with our phones when it seems like nothing fun is happening in our own lives—when we’re getting our oil changed or waiting for the coffee to brew.

It makes sense, then, that anyone else’s fun or beauty or sparkle gets under our skin. It magnifies our own dissatisfaction with that moment. When you’re waiting for your coffee to brew, the majority of your friends probably aren’t doing anything any more special.
This is just a bit of the post... please read more here:


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