The Story of Ourselves

Casual conversations with the average person or any quick perusal of a great many articles online will reveal some have a rather strong dislike for social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, among others. It’s everything that’s wrong with the Millennial Generation — that generalizing term, which represents millions of different people. Taken on the whole, however, I think these sites and these tools at our fingertips have been a net benefit to us.

That notwithstanding, there’s something to be said about how we present ourselves on Facebook or Twitter. Friends or followers quite obviously only see that which we want them to see. The carefully crafted “funny” status, the perfectly posed selfie (another hated term of Millennial Generation critics) and the highlights of the exciting moments in our lives; that vacation overseas, that romantic sunset picture with your loved one and so on.

There’s even studies which suggest this “highlight reel” of other people’s lives on Facebook depress those that see it. And it shouldn’t, but alas.

We’re not showing people selfies of when we cry ourselves to sleep or status updating the details of a particularly ugly fight with that loved one or any manner of the not so light side of our lived highlights. Unless you’re one of “those” people that we all know; then I’d say the detractors have a point, but I digress.

Surely, this is nothing new. Even without Facebook or Twitter as our platform, we do this. Unless you’re close to someone, they’re seeing a shadow of your real self. And even if you are close to someone, no matter how close, I’m not so sure they ever truly see the purest form of your “self.”

Which leads me to a saying that’s been rattling in my brain for a the last couple days: Don’t sell out the truth of yourself for the story of yourself. Maybe sometimes we lose our way in that regard. Truth means warts and all, and well, that doesn’t look very sexy in a selfie. Gotta get your good side, right?

I’m not sure what any of this really means, if there’s some sort of “call to action” to be stated or that it’s even necessarily a “bad thing.” But it’s my musing for the night.

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