Twenty-Something Truths For Twenty-Somethings
truth number  today from the blog series hosted by myself and my dear friend Kristin! please join the conversation as we continue to unpack our twenties, and the truths we have found thus far. what have you learned? <3 <3 <3
Just because your life isn’t cool on Instagram or Twitter, it does not mean that it isn’t cool.
There is a huge difference between living a full and adventurous life, and telling everyone about your full and adventurous life. Our twenty-something culture has given us some very creative mediums to tell everyone about our full and adventurous lives. I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve never claimed to be a ‘photog.’ I would never put it in my bio, I won’t ever offer to give someone high quality portraits, because that just isn’t my gift. But Instagram has this ability to make me feel like I am meeting the world’s deep need to see everything about my life.
Now, some people have an eye for photography and enough time in their day to take #nofilter pictures of their every move. They get tons of followers and double taps, and it makes their life seem so incredibly awesome because everyone can see how incredibly awesome it is. They make my portfolio look like a disposable camera’s product. In the perfect black & white picture, they have conquered my confidence in the visual portrayal of my own life. And I proceed to believe my life isn’t cool, because I didn’t use that filter on my martini picture, or get enough likes on the candid one of my puppy.
Or, the Twitter cool kids with their six-figure-amount-of-followers, who give the most hilarious synopsis of their day in 140 characters. I need to beat them, I need to be wittier than them, I need to hashtag like them. Or I need as many people to care about my thoughts as they have caring about theirs. I need everyone in the world to know my hilarious or thought-provoking or life-changing sentences. And when I don’t beat them, I proceed to believe my life isn’t cool.
But your life is not measured by likes or retweets or picture quality; your life is measured by breadth and depth and joy and love. I can’t tell you how many times I have admired a friend’s life from afar (and by ‘afar’, I mean ‘frequent drive-by’s on Facebook’) and then later found out that her marriage is actually at a really low place right now, or he got fired from his job, or those two have completely lost touch with their identity. We can make our lives look phenomenal — that’s the best-kept secret of 2012. We can play the part of anyone — and yet be completely empty in and of ourselves.
So put down your smartphone, and let it be. Stop caring about her endless list of comments, or the fact that he always eats at trendy cafes; focus on the people in your life who make up for all the pictures you can’t take fast enough. They deserve your attention more than any timeline does. And if you’ve chosen well, they likely base their friendship with you off things far more important than pictures and tweets.