I find that sometimes social media can be a bit like the Rabbit's hole and I am Alice. It's full of wonderful things, but it can alter your sense of reality and lead you to make comparisons that are unhealthy or unrealistic. I sometimes scroll through Instagram or Facebook and, after seeing post after post of people's beautiful, curated lives, can feel like mine is empty. Which is nonsense! So I want to deal with this.
Perceptions of body image, self-worth, and beauty are difficult things to talk about. I've found that often even the language we use is unfairly predisposed to one narrow point of view. Words like "amazing," "stunning," "super-talented," "perfect," and "blessed" fill the descriptions in our social media feeds. At the same time we tend to shy away from things that could be considered different because of a desire to belong - one way or another. As I've reflected on these feelings I don't think the problem is magazines, blogs, or social media - it's the expectations we set upon ourselves in order to live those beautiful, curated lives others seem to have.
I'm going to use two terms in this first post. They might seem at first to be a little complicated, but my hope is to help you to think differently about the images you see, the language you read, and the words you hear and speak. They are: objective perfection and subjective perfection.
Perfection is already tricky as it means there is no more room for improvement. Based on this explanation you could say perfection is, ultimately, unattainable. But that doesn't mean it's not worth working toward!
Now for the difficult part. Objective perfection is a standard to which all things are held. It is concrete, it is unwavering. It is, in a word, unrealistic.
So how do we recognize that each person we encounter is working on their own version of perfection? We idolize some people for qualities or experiences we wish to have, but fail to recognize this might also work in reverse. So I say, embrace subjective perfection!
Subjectivity is something we all live with. We all see the world differently and experience things differently. So why not our perceptions of beauty, self-worth and body image? Embracing subjective perfection means that, at our core, we value who we are but always strive to make ourselves better. The key difference is that "better" is not something unattainable, but simply a movement toward our best selves.
So the next time you find yourself frustrated after scrolling through your Instagram or Facebook feeds, don't hate yourself because you can't live the beautiful, curated lives you see - understand that we are all on our own paths to finding our best selves. Welcome to You Me Serendipity!
Want to explore subjective perfection with me? Share the photo below on your social media feeds and why you're choosing to embrace subjective perfection. And don't forget to tag #YouMeSerendipity!