I seem to find myself in this place every three to six months, questioning my use of social media, questioning the “need” for my blog at all. To be honest, I’ve found myself stepping back from blogs quite a lot recently, finding that many of the blogs I used to love so much perhaps I have just outgrown? Not in a bad way, they are great blogs in their own right, but they are not “me” any more. I find myself scrolling through my reader and finding only a handful of blogs that really catch my eye. Most of it seems the same… who is wishing for what… who is buying what… who is needing what… and whilst I see lots of beautiful products and organic fabrics and lovely houses, I wonder how people can present such perfect lives without any real blemishes. Or if there are blemishes they are perfect little bumps, without the scaly, messy, ugly crap that we all know surrounds it. Blemishes presented so beautifully that it almost feels like they were put there on purpose. And they were of course.
I’ve found myself thinking a lot about this world of self exploitation. Where we write about our lives and we put them on the internet, in public forums and social media, like some sort of sordid competition. Not just blogs, but Facebook and Twitter and everywhere, not just bloggers but everyone. Updates about personal things, whining about problems that aren’t even problems, boasting about great wins and mourning great failures. My news feed seems like a competitive sport where my friends and allies seem to be going up against each other to find out whose day was worse, whose dinner was better, who is happier, who has got the better boyfriend… who has succeeded in toilet training… who is the sickest or the most miserable… who has the newest car, or ring, or shirt or whatever.
Somehow on social media we can be whoever we want the world to see us to be.
But who are we when noone is watching? Isn’t that what really matters, who we are at our very core, the essence of ourselves without an audience, the way we are in our communities, the way we talk to our families, the way we parent our children, the way we live our lives outside of a spotlight. Isn’t that what’s really important?
I’ve been thinking a lot about who I am when no one is watching.
Who are you?