Thoughts on social media in my personal life

In recent months, I have felt even more addicted to social media than I have in the past. Social media has allowed us to spread news, thoughts, and our lives with more people than ever, however at what cost?

For me, the most time spent is on Instagram. The hours I spend scrolling through useless content on Instagram is embarrassing, and I feel ashamed after starting at my phone for too long, yet always pick it back up again. I can feel myself being unproductive the second I open the app, but it is so difficult to avoid it. Instagram also gives us that false reality of the lives of those around us. My self-esteem reduces when I see other people living their lives more vibrantly than I, or with better clothes, or more parties, the list is endless. It is known that social media is not reality, but when we scroll through this content for hours a day, it feels like it is.

I believe social media is positive when sending a message, to share a story, or promote a purpose. As a 20-something year old, that is not the bulk of what I post, or what my friends post. Endless vacation pictures, couple posts and selfies aren’t necessary for the world to see, but they are oh so addicting. Instagram is a way to validate our lives through likes and comments, and we feel good about ourselves based off of the jealously of others. This cycle fuels a huge part of social media, and I don’t understand why we always go back to it. We use it to beat ourselves up, while simultaneously lifting ourselves up.

I am disappointed in myself for how often I mindlessly open Instagram, and then all of a sudden 20 minutes has passed. Was I that unhappy or bored with what I was doing that I felt the need to turn to the screen? Or was I that interested in what other people were doing? Why does this matter so much?

This morning I took it upon myself to delete the Instagram and Facebook apps off of my phone, but my accounts still exist. I kept Snapchat, because I genuinely use Snapchat to communicate with friends, and Snapchat stories have become somewhat irrelevant in comparison to Instagram stories. I am going to go a few weeks and see how I feel afterwards, and likely redownload the apps, but mindfully try to use them significantly less.

Amanda Weber
Daily blogging as a useful habit

Yesterday I read Seth Godin’s blog about daily blogging. Seth Godin blogs daily, even if these blogs are short. As tedious as blogging may seem initially, it will pay off, even if it takes months (he believes). Today, I am giving it a try.

Where I see the benefit of daily blogging is in the aspect of self-reflection and inner thought. The goal of writing for me is to gain motivation, clarity, new ideas and (maybe) to have fun.

Graduating this last May with a degree in Business Administration (Marketing) and still searching for a job has been the opposite of motivating. Some weeks I feel motivated and inspired to do well, and other weeks I feel beaten down and unmotivated. I have always found my motivation within myself, and for the first time I feel myself coming up short. I have always taken on more and told myself I can always do more without compromising quality or happiness. There is what we want to do and what we are told we are supposed to do. I genuinely want to do what society tells me I am supposed to be doing, and I can’t seem to accomplish that. I have always told myself not to stress out, and everything will be okay, as it always has been. I know this remains true, but at times it becomes hard to believe.

I was raised to have motivation, purpose and drive. From a young age, my mom was teaching me the value of hard work, persistence and responsibility. Homework was important to do, because it builds habits. Homework was even important to do over the summer, again, because it builds strong habits. Building habits starts young, and changing habits can be very difficult. My mom knew that she would have to engrain positive habits when I was young, and I am very thankful for that. Something I took for granted, however, is how much my mom did for my habits. Now that I am at an age where I have the consciousness to change my habits, and create new habits, I am realizing how hard that can be. My mom focused on creating good habits in school. I was always great at school. I should approach the job search like I approached school, but the difference is that the only person holding myself accountable now is me. I ran 5 times a week when I was a part of a group, but cannot seem to do that on my own, or at least sustain that habit for longer than a month at a time.

I think that this focus on myself is where my motivation is faltering. I need to focus on what I want, how I am going to get there, remain realistic and remember that hard work does pay off. I need to be able to keep self-motivation high, even when I feel beaten down. I need to be better at focusing on motivating myself, instead of relying on people around me to push me or inspire me. I must be able to inspire myself.

Amanda Weber