Browsing through Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms can be so depressing for so many of us. We look at all the amazing things our friends are doing in complete envy, whilst wondering why our own lives aren’t as amazing and extravagant as theirs. But then you have to stop and think for a second……how real is all of this?
Take a closer look…see all that editing?! The filters, the airbrushing and modifications of just a standard picture can be so deceiving. Even the Seven Wonders of the World are apparently not beautiful enough to be exempt from this and that’s when you have to consider whether it has all gone a step too far.
Taking photo after photo to get the perfect image that we can then modify multiple times is not a true reflection of anyone’s appearance or anyone’s life. It’s quite sad really to think that we live in such an image conscious society that many are no longer comfortable in their own skin and feel that “touching up” images excessively before they are uploaded is necessary. No one walks around wearing modification glasses (although I wouldn’t be surprised if some clever so and so was in the process of inventing them right now). We all see a person/thing as they are, so why the need to edit photographs so much?!
When I was looking for a photographer for our wedding, I saw some incredible work from one particular photographer so I went to see him and view his portfolio. There’s no doubt that his work was phenomenal, but it came at a cost, and I’m not talking about a monetary one. He showed me before and after pictures of a stunning girl, with the before one being her as she truly looked, “imperfections” and all. Then he showed me the after picture and explained how he “straightened her nose” and airbrushed her face to produce the “perfect image.” To me personally, the before image was perfect in every way as it captured her natural beauty and was a true reflection of her. I wondered how many imperfections he would find in the photographs he would take of me and then thought about the embarrassment of showing these overly edited images to my friends and family in my wedding album. I found the thought of presenting this type of album to people much more humiliating than an album of me, looking like me. Because after all, who would I be kidding, other than myself. Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder and believe it or not, the beholder doesn’t walk around with an editing app in front of his/her eyes!
We all show the best of our lives via social media. Not many people upload photographs of themselves at their worst or all the crappy every day things they are doing. Remember, that holiday that you went on may be someone else’s dream destination and that restaurant that someone else dined at may be the one that you have been waiting to go to for months. My point is, you may look at someone else’s life and wish you were doing all the fun stuff they are doing, but amongst that fun stuff is the reality of life. They will be doing all the boring stuff you are doing too but just not shouting from the rooftops about it because it’s much less desirable than presenting the “perfect life.”
Don’t get me wrong, we are all guilty of a filter here and there (I definitely love a Snapchat filter), but don’t let it become an obsession and take the fun and beauty away from life. Be thankful for everything you have and cherish it. Don’t waste your time wishing you were someone else, somewhere else, doing something else because you may be missing out on all the incredible memories you could be making right where you are.