A Social Illusion

I have always felt that life is like a rollercoaster. One minute we’re soaring high, filled with exhilaration, as we zip around the next turn. Suddenly, we barrel into unexpected darkness. The bottom line, life isn’t easy. Most people do the best they can navigating through their daily challenges. Happiness can be illusive and is a gift when it’s found.

It can mean different things to different people. As I grow older, what brings me joy is knowing the ones I love are physically and mentally healthy. I’ve learned at the end of the day, that's the most important thing in life. Everything else monetary is icing on the cake. As Denzel Washington says, “You’ll never see a U-Haul driving behind a hearse. You can’t take it with you, but what you can take, is the contentment of knowing you did the best you could.

That brings me to my next topic, social media. Quite frankly, it fascinates me. I often find myself analyzing the purpose and benefits of this powerful connection link. Whether people are conscious of it or not, the truth is social media is a brand building tool. I can remember my early days of retail, being asked, "What do I want to be known for? What do I want people to think when they hear my name?" In 2021, it’s no longer just what we say or how we act that contributes to how we are perceived. Now, it’s the content that we post. I look at posting as a press release. Another layer that contributes to building our personal brand.

Some people are strategic with their press releases, others not so much. I don’t think there is a right or wrong way to filter your content. Each person is unique in what they want to share and how they go about it.

So, how does my initial mention of life challenges tie into the topic of social media? Because, I believe there is always positive and negative in everything. That would hold true for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Psychology studies have shown that there are cases where people have actually displayed signs of depression, deriving from seeing other people’s social media content. Meaning, it appears that certain people are living a perfect life. Their days are filled with nothing but adventure, excitement, and joy…while others are struggling to stay afloat.

The truth is, everyone goes through life challenges. It doesn’t matter what your savings account balance is or the brand of your car. In most cases, people are posting their highlight reel. You’re viewing only the best moments of their life. Boating, vacations, dining, etc.

Be happy for other people, but also remember that you’re only seeing a glimpse into their reality. Don’t waste valuable time comparing your life to someone else’s. For sometimes, what you see could be nothing more than a social illusion.

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