19 Aug Use Social Media for Personal Growth
When I go to post on my blog, or Facebook or Instagram, I stop myself. A part of my mind tells me: You’re just bragging. No one cares. Stop being so boastful. I have this judgement about myself because of how I’ve judged others.
I go through phases in which I open social media and am met with discomfort. I see everyone else doing cool things and for some reason it makes me feel bad. My instinctual response is to judge that person, the poster. I think: They must be narcissistic, egotistical, boastful. They must think their shit doesn’t stink and that their life is more important than anyone else’s.
I see something on social media that makes me uncomfortable – a post of someone skiing an amazingly sick line, rafting in a beautiful canyon, celebrating an engagement, or a puppy – and surprisingly bad feelings well up. But as with most discomfort in our lives, it is not an opportunity to judge the external world, instead it is an invitation to inspect our own internal world.
This is not about the person that posted a moment of beauty and gratitude in their life. This is about me. This is about feeling insufficient, comparing myself to others, a call to action that I’m not yet living the life that I want for myself, or a reminder to be more accepting of my own unique process in life.
After realizing this, I now welcome the discomfort and I use it to learn something about my inner life. Each time those feelings arise, I ask: What about this makes me uncomfortable? What emotion is this? What is the origin in my life of this?
And in this practice, I’ve found that I have less discomfort. I am more and more able to share the joy of those posting about their life journey.
I spent years sitting at a desk and felt terrible, emotionally, physically, spiritually. During that time, I was the most judgmental and harshest critic of others and myself. And even though I resented them, it was those people sharing their stories of adventures outdoors that inspired me to change my life. I haven’t figure it all out, but seeking time in nature, taking the drug of wilderness, has led to the most significant healing and growth in my life.
And that is why I share. First, I want to share my joy, to entice you to join me out here, or wherever you’re called to. I hope to spike your punch. And, when you see my photos or read my stories, whether you feel uncomfortable or inspired, resentful or joyful, I hope you find an opportunity to learn, to feel, to grow.
I encourage you to continue sharing your lessons, your beauty, your gratitude for life’s many experiences. And I’ll continue the struggle of greeting your posts not with judgement or blaming the external world for my own emotions, but with an inner inquiry that unquestionably will make me more compassionate and a better human each day.
Share on, friends (just no duck-face selfies or post gym mirror shots).