This isn’t a set the tone. This isn’t a mocking pre-phrase before a debunking. This is a challenge. A request. Let’s be who we truly are, what we truly are, let’s be real.
It’s so easy these days to be fake. Filters, editing programs, online interaction, all of these things and more lend to ease at being who we want to be rather than what we truly are. Let’s be serious here, who actually is always as optimistic and happy as their Instagram posts make themselves sound? Yeah, certainly not me. Who is always as thoughtful and ordered as they try to be in their blog posts? Again, certainly, absolutely not me.
This isn’t to say that being optimistic, orderly, or thoughtful in public settings are wrong. It simply means this: make sure that you’re not creating someone who doesn’t exist. Are you showing the real you and highlighting great qualities (which is acceptable!) or are you taking those great qualities and blowing them to perfection and ignoring any other part of YOU that might not be picture perfect?
I was at a little group meeting and someone brought this “be real” topic up. It made me think about all the things I post online. It made me truly consider whether I was portraying myself and my thoughts as they truly were or as an “edited to perfection” version. I determined that I could be more real. I could share more about struggles, more about the trials and fears that I encounter and not just the thoughts that spring from those struggles, trials, or fears.
I’ll be real here: if you come up to me at any given moment of the day and asked me, “What are you thinking about?” my answer would most likely be something like, “Well I’m worried about what I should do about so or such” or “I’m worried about what so and so will think of this or that.” I worry…a lot. With those worries, sometimes I encounter a little ‘message’ from God, an assurance, an ‘I love you’, etc. and often times those are my motivations for posts.
So the reality: 99% of the time I’m worrying. Maybe, just maybe 1% of the time I’m thinking something of relevance, worth, or ‘depth’.
What is it you might not be so real about online? Are there things you highlight so much that you don’t ever bring up a struggle or even a talent that would help motivate others? We all have struggles. No one doesn’t. So let’s stop pretending we’re perfect and have it all together. Doing that simply alienates yourself from needed companionship or healing and discourages others on their hard journey.
You don’t have to tell everyone every struggle. You don’t have to publish your faults. You don’t have to have a weekly confession of what you failed at. You don’t have to admit you ate such and such much food in a day. But you do have to be real. (If appropriate) tell the whole story and not just the heroic part of it. For instance: yes, I didn’t want to write this post today. And, yet, I may have used the motivation of cheesecake to get through writing this post. Not too bad right? I hope you at least found that amusing. It’s a little hard to admit I don’t love (all the time) running to the computer and writing down a thought I had, but it makes it real, doesn’t it?
So, today, tomorrow, the next day, try looking at your posts, at your photos and ask yourself if you’re being real. If you’re being you and not the you that was created in your head.
Anyone else use goodies or relaxation time as a motivation or ‘bribe’ to get yourself to do something? Hopefully I’m not the only one…or that might be a little awkward.