When social media envy sets in…what to do about it

Why you get jealous looking at social media:

  • it seems that everyone is going to a party but you
  • it seems that you can never find out about any fun events until after they happen
  • it seems like you are always home on a Friday night missing out
  • it seems like everyone is on a trip when you are immobile
  • it seems like everyone has friends and you’re alone
  • it seems like all those high school feelings bubble up again

But, at the same time, you know you are being ridiculous because:

  • you know you are guilty of sharing the same envy-inducing posts
  • you know you do have friends
  • you may not be as big of a partier as others, but usually you are content with that, until you get this idea that somehow you are missing out on life
  • you know that it is social media, not real life
  • you know that behind that wonderful picture are likely a lot of not-so-wonderful moments that went unshared
  • you know it’s unhealthy to use social media to compare yourself with others
  • you know life is way more than that
  • you know you should shut it down and get back to doing, and being and living, your way
  • you hate the acronym FOMO and don’t want to contribute to its hype, its silly power

So what can you do when you start to feel the pangs of social media envy?

  1. Shut it down. Close out of Instagram, get off Facebook, don’t even think about looking at Snapchat.
  2. Look around you. Look at the real things in your life. The real things you have created, that you have brought into your world.
  3. Go interact with those things — read a book, kiss your partner, go on a walk.
  4. Try to avoid the black hole of self-pity. One day you’ll be at a cool party, and you won’t need to force it to happen. One day you will have a circle of friends to call on on a Saturday night, they will appear organically as you put yourself out into the world.
  5. Go make something delicious. Delicious food always helps, always.
  6. Go write your far away friend a letter. Get your feelings on paper. Share your reality with him/her. Keep those tough and sacred bonds intact.
  7. Focus on your work. When you’re making, doing, creating, your mind eases. It doesn’t have time to focus on what you’re lacking.
  8. Message a friend. Plan a date! Don’t wait around for other people, we’re all just sitting around waiting for someone else to ask.
  9. Think about what you’ll do tomorrow. Make a plan, feel good about it.
  10. Try to love yourself a little more today because you’re okay. You’re beautiful. You’re alive. You’re healthy. You’re here. You’re fine.

*Base photo for collage by Emma Kate Low

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