It seems these days we have completely lost touch with reality and surrendered to our perception of it as a result of social media. Instagram is the name of an application as well as a verb in its own right and most of us are now more concerned with which photo filter to choose than what to eat for lunch. Entire setups are orchestrated based on what will look best as a picture post and we are so far from the days when all you had to do was say “cheese”. How far has the phenomenon sucked you in?
Personally, I can’t even pretend not to be a part of the virtual sharing wave. I admit to taking selfies, stressing over filters, the whole nine yards. However, I can’t help but worry if social media is slowly but surely depleting our actual social skills. I wonder if sending Snapchats will completely replace texting, and if we will eventually need to represent every emotion and event with a picture because we are so used to being visually stimulated that words and human interaction no longer hold any interest. How many times have you sat in a room with friends and had everyone completely ignore each other for at least ten minutes while scrolling through their phones? How many times have we defeated the purpose of actually meeting one another in person? I bet I could have more of an interaction with someone these days by actually being in another room and texting them or sending a Snapchat, as opposed to actually being face to face. The latter would result in completely ignoring one another in order to endlessly “insta-stalk” all the accounts we follow. I think we all need to take a step back and virtually slap each other into reality otherwise we will soon lose all of the value of human interaction. If you are with your friends, try to concentrate on actually being present, not how to document it for others to see. I remind myself of this often now, because I think we are all going a little bit mad.
As an experiment, I challenged one of my selfie-obsessed coworkers one day not to take a single selfie for the whole day and called it #noselfiesunday just to see if she could do it. Just as a backdrop to this situation, she loves taking these snaps so much that I sent her a voice note of the “let me take a selfie” song when it came on the radio the other day, to which she responded “oh my God, three other people sent me this today!” At the time of writing this article, it was only 2pm and perhaps it was still too early to experience real withdrawal symptoms from the self-photo taking phenomenon. As an added measure, I instructed all my coworkers around her to inform me immediately if they catch her taking any selfies. Watching a selfie addict not take selfies is a really enjoyable experience and I would recommend this to you all. I advise you to challenge your selfie obsessed friends to do the same and see how far they can actually go without clicking that button! It’s like watching a coffee addict not have an espresso until noon on only four hours of sleep (it isn’t pretty). Seeing the way our virtual habits have exponentially grown, I think we all need to engage in social media less and live a little more, what do you guys think?