Social media has enriched my life in a number of ways. I love the connections that I’ve been able to make with people outside of my normal circle of everyday interactions thanks to Facebook. Pintrest has become my primary resource for finding new ideas and creative ways to do things. And Instagam has inspired me to challenge myself artistically and encouraged me to keep working at skill that I struggle with to see growth over time. In these ways, I can’t imagine my life without social media.
Over the last year, in a push to grow my business, I started focusing on social media, spending more time creating posts working toward a consistent schedule and a stronger online presence. This strategy has been good for my business, but not so good for myself.
To begin with, it is a distraction. For every 20 min. that I spend doing something productive, I spend another 60 min. distracted on a rabbit trail. However, time management is a challenge for many entrepreneurs. No, my issue with social media comes from a deeper, personal place. For me, social media is a constant source of discontentment and jealously.
As I scroll down my Facebook timeline, I see all the places that my friends are traveling to, the concerts they are at, and the restaurants they eat at, and I feel jealous. I log on to look at the pins that have inspired those who I follow on Pintrest, and I see beautiful homes, inspiring studios, and gorgeous works of art. I compare these with my own home, studio and artwork and I feel discontent.
Jealousy and discontentment are not character traits that I am comfortable holding in my heart. They rob me of joy. Yet, it doesn’t stop there. When I’m not on the computer, my mind is still on those social media sites as I ponder how to best document my life for maximum social media impact. I’m not being present in the moments of my life if my mind is pondering ways to leverage my life moments on social media. Trying to live my life as a promotion of my brand is like creating artwork because I think it will sell. Neither is an authentic expression from my heart and neither is very fulfilling.
I ask myself why I spend my time participating in something that plants seeds of jealousy and discontentment and causes me to live my life without authenticity. Sadly, the answer is, to grow my business. This is not a good enough answer. I believe that if I continue down this path, it will instead be the death of my creative business. For how can I expect to receive God’s inspiration, and create meaningful art if I am not being authentic? For this reason there will be some coming changes as to how I stay connected with all of you. More information about these changes will be coming later.
In the mean time, I’m wondering how social media has effected how you live your life? Share in the comments.