The skewed perception of the "ideal"
I remember when i was young, watching those amazing classic movies. I remember thinking about how it would be having a similar life as the one portrayed in the movie. Living in that reality for a few days, imagining how the days looked like, taking these images in and wanting them for myself. What was really happening at the time was mind conditioning and we are all a lot more aware of that today. A lot of those ideals and norms were fed to us through movies, books, comics, cartoon, you name it. Our interpretation of happiness or life success, family composition...all of it became unconsciously dictated by what we read and saw and heard.
Today, social media is added to the list. The "cool stuff" or "cool people" are the ones that post, that have the most followers and they are considered successful and amazing. By extension, if you do not have the same lifestyle, success or image, ...you are not successful. You are not making an impact. You are not significant.
And that leads a lot of people towards feelings of being worth less, being insignificant, not achieving anything in their lives, not making a valuable impact. And that leads to depression and anxiety. It has become your reference, upon which you base your own judgement of your value.
When social media started growing and i joined facebook. I was first excited to reconnect with people i had lost touch with. People from school, from a previous life. And that was great, i will not deny that. But i distinctively remember one of them who one day lashed at me through - ironically- a message on messenger. That person was accusing me of "trying to be popular" by reaching out on social to many others. Clearly, without listing the many absurdities of these comments, that person was clearly struggling with their own emotions about friendship and what is the threshold for "popularity" is ( it seemed tied to an actual number...). Needless to say this one way accusation, and leaving no room for conversation, didn't go so well and i am obviously no longer in touch with this person. But one thing is clear: what you don't see on social, is someone's actual reality or true emotion. And there is often no room for a purposeful conversation or an empathetic open minded genuine connection.
Here is to hoping this changes.