Whether we admit it or not social media is a huge of our lives. Like most people my age I started using social media about 8-9 years ago and I have had a lot of good but mostly bad experiences on social media. It’s started with FACEBOOK, BBM, 2GO, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM AND SNAPCHAT TO NAME A FEW.
As a teenager I grew into maturity rather slowly, I was really nervous, naïve and super curious. At 14 I looked up 18 year olds and I wanted to do what an eighteen year old was doing and as you can imagine it didn’t end well for me. For a teen who was so engrossed and only looked up to the wrong people, I started taking “sexy” pictures the way I saw these girls were and I realized I started getting a lot of attention from guys and not in a good way, mostly sexual attentions,I started to realize the more cleavage I showed in a picture or the more I shoot out my ass out and the tighter the dress, the more likes and comments I get, the more people started to follow me and “slide into my dm”. I loved the attention and for so many years I put so much pressure on myself to look as picture perfect as I could just so people would tell me how “hot” I was and how “sexy” I was looking.Eventually all this lead to a lot of sexual harassment and I started getting depressed, I wanted to feel loved but I got mostly lustful feelings and that just drove me crazy. I realized I was spending so much money on data and even when I didn’t have I would take money from my mom’s purse because I didn’t want to miss out on anything happening online.
Couple of years later I was bullied online I really can’t remember what exactly it was about but it was mostly about a guy and a bunch of mean girls. They called me names and told me I was ugly and how people were just using me and that just took my depression into a whole new level. I became suicidal, I remember sometimes I would just ask God to take my life or I would eat something that would make me feel so awful and despite all I felt, I still wanted to keep up with my “social life” and it was hard. Gradually months grew into years and I was in the university, and social media controlled my life and my relationships and I started trying to have “couple goals” like all these people I see on Instagram, I wanted my relationship to be like that and I made a lot of shitty decisions am not proud of. Then I started really focusing on the material aspect of life, on what people were showing me. When I see a 19 year old girl wearing a 200k worth of weave I start thinking to myself well am 19 why don’t I have a 200k weave on my head. I see people my age in private jet, driving fancy cars, staying in fancy hotels, wearing a sort designers that I didn’t even know existed and I was consumed with jealousy and resentment. Then when I became single I became more upset when I see someone in a cute relationship and am wondering why am I single and I started being so hard on myself and trying too hard and I became a monster, I distanced myself from people and I had zero self esteem and confidence. One day I came into a realization and I told myself “you have being a damn fool for letting complete strangers control your life this way”. For watching myself go into depression consumed with anger and bitterness because of things that don’t even make sense. I had my wake up call that day and this is what I did;
1. I LEARNT TO BE CONTENT: It took time and it took God but I stopped wanting what other people had (am still a work in progress) I consistently told myself; what I had was enough for the time I was in. I didn’t need the latest phones or expensive clothes to feel good about myself, all I needed to be happy and content with who I was.
2. I LEARNT THAT NOT ALL THAT GLITTERS IS GOLD: The fact that someone seems picture perfect doesn’t mean they are happy or they are living their best life. Most people simply fake it till they make it on social media, Especially if you fall into the hands of professional fakers. They would pretend to be things they are not and you would be pressuring yourself for things they don’t even have.
3. UNFOLLOWED CERTAIN PEOPLE: People that I think set “UNREALISTIC STANDARDS” of life for me I simply unfollowed them or block them. What is the point of harbouring people that constantly remind you of what you don’t have or what you are miss out of. If you don’t see them, you can’t think about them and that reduces the pressure tremendously.
4. I STARTED DOING THINGS FOR ME AND NOT FOR EVERYONE: Why should live to please complete strangers, people I would probably never ever meet in my life. Why should they have such a strong say in my life? People’s opinions stopped counting because at the end of the day, it’s my life and it’s my journey.
5. FOLLOW PEOPLE THAT IMPACT YOUR LIFE POSITIVELY: I started to really filter my following and I deliberately started following people that I thought could inspire me and motivate me because at the end of the day it is what you feed your soul that would produce whether good or bad fruit.
6. I ACCEPTED THAT EVERYONE HAS THEIR TIME AND SEASON: I stopped comparing myself to others because at the end of the day we all grow at different pace in life. And when it is my time every thing would begin to work together for my good, it won’t come a little later or earlier than it should.
7. I HAD TO KNOW WHEN TO STOP: Sometimes you need a break , lately I just decided to delete specific apps off my phone temporarily when I feel like I have spent too much time on it. Social media isn’t an every second thing and I consistently just stop and focus my time and energy on something else.
8. MATERIALS THINGS DON’T EQUAL SUCCESS: We usually estimate people’s success by how much the have in the bank or the kind of cars they drive and how much bottles they pop in the club. It’s easy to be fooled by these little things but true success is not about the money. Success is about reaching your goals and potentials so don’t get it twisted.