This is a bit of a impromptu post, I wasn’t planning on writing it but I found myself with the above dilemma. I want to share my experience with you as a warning as I would hate for someone else to experience what I have.
When I say social media, I mean Instagram really. Instagram would be the social media channel I use the most and for the most part I enjoy it.
Instagram has had something of a detrimental affect on my holiday expectations though. When I imagined being in Sorrento and traveling the Amalfi Coast I thought of images like this:
I’m using @eileencassidy as an example here because I followed her on Instagram before I went on vacation and her photos and others lead me to the expectation that with the right clothes, the right place and a bit of patience I could have just as fabulous holiday snaps to share.
When in reality this is the most glamorous photo I have, which has a lot of filters to try hide the fact that humans sweat (hello shiny forehead) and that hair was put on your head to remind you that you can’t control everything.
I think my feelings on social media and it’s affect on our ability to enjoy life was summed up by one moment while in Italy. On the last day before we left, we were on a beach in Amalfi. It was beautiful, we’d been swimming, had gelato and were enjoying the sun when two girls came down to the water. One of the girls went up the beach to the changing rooms and came back in her swimsuit. She stood knee deep in the sea and had her friend take a picture of her doing a pose. Her friend then joined her in the sea and they took a selfie together. After they left the beach.
I couldn’t understand how they could be in one of the most beautiful places on the planet, standing in this sapphire-coloured sea and not want go for a swim or even just sit and enjoy the space they were in. Don’t get me wrong, taking pictures and photo editing is great fun. However the fun stopped for me when I felt this pressure to capture this false version of life.
I’ve come to recognise that I think I need a break from social media but in particular Instagram. The pressure I felt to have these beautiful holiday pictures stressed me out. Luckily Adam is my anchor. He brought me back to reality and made me realise that putting up pictures like the ones from Eileen Cassidy isn’t real life. So in the end I had a great time on holiday.
I hope this post helps others feeling the same stress to be able to let go of it and enjoy their vacation.
‘Social media demands a lot of us on top of our already demanding lives. So let’s disconnect as we need to and renew our interest and ourselves.’
-: Simon Mainwaring