Sunday, April 12, 2015

SOCIAL MEDIA: A FORCE FOR GOOD

While I know I often promote limiting our time on social media, this post is actually going to be a little bit different. In fact, this post was inspired by two women who I discovered on social media.   
So much MOST of what we see on social media are the highlights of everyone’s lives. I often refer to this as the highlight reel. We see the awesome vacation, photos of the “perfect weekend with the besties”, and countless gorgeous selfies. What we don’t see are the 35 less-than-gorgeous selfies it took to get that good one. We don’t see the boring days spent at home alone or the struggles that others actually are enduring. 
This week I felt especially overwhelmed. The details as to why really aren’t necessary, but the point is, I was stressed. Even though I knew better, I found myself scrolling down my Instagram newsfeed observing all the “perfect lives” of those I was following. Then I stumbled upon a photo with a caption that I really related to posted by one of my newest favorite IGers, @mstarabrooke [check her out, you won’t regret it]. The caption read,  
“I had a mini breakdown this afternoon after a few too many things brought me to my breaking point. My best friend came to my rescue, scooped me up and fork fed, yes, fork fed me ice cream and fixed one of my mini disasters for me. He told me to not stress over the little things, and to just do the best I can. Isn’t hat what we are all here for? To do the best we can? I needed today to remember to shake off the things that don’t matter and to do my best.” 
I loved the realness of her words. We really are all here just to do our very best. 
After reading that I realized that I had bitten off more than I could chew and taken on one too many projects for one little girl to handle. So, I did what I needed to do and rescheduled what I could. At first I felt like a failure. I couldn’t hack it. But in reality, I was doing the best I could. Sometimes doing our best requires taking a step back. I needed to recharge before I could really put my all into anything. 
Taking a step back and putting what I could on hold was really what I needed to do. However, even knowing this made me feel like I was falling behind. I was frustrated with my current situation and again, felt like I had failed. Then, as if the flood gates had opened, in flew the negative thoughts. I felt defeated. It probably didn’t help that again, I was scrolling through Instagram. It didn’t take long before I stumbled upon the darling Allyson Rowe, Miss Washington USA 2014’s account, @allysonmrowe. 
This girl is such a lovely human. Like, she is literally gorgeous. It wouldn’t be hard to feel inferior to her. However, this girl isn’t like every typical pretty blonde. This girl is incredibly inspiring. In fact, every time I see one of her posts, I leave it feeling better about myself. Not something very typical with Instagram. I found one of her videos from awhile back and the caption said,  
“Your current situation is not your final destination.”
It isn’t overly common for me to feel so inspired after being on social media. In fact, it often has the reverse effect. However, in one week, I had two lovely girls help me in a way that I’m sure they were not anticipating. They didn’t only share the perfect parts of their lives. They were real. Tara let it be known to the world that she too has less than ideal days and Allyson constantly uses her social media to bring others closer to Christ and feel of their own infinite worth.   
Just like these darling girls, YOU too can be an influence for good. YOU too can inspire others. Social media does not have to be a place where we leave feeling “less than”. Social media can actually be a force for good. Be real. Share positive and inspiring posts. Strive to lift others up. Leave a positive comment. (And for the record,  “Like, can I be you?” are not the type of comments I am referring to). 
Let us all strive to be more real, stop comparing, and choose to use our own social media as a force for good. Maybe you too can have a positive impact one someone else just as these two lovely ladies did for me. 
Who has inspired you on social media? 
How can you use social media as a force for good?

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