We live in a culture now where social media tends to feel just as real as our normal in-person interactions. It's almost more important how our lives appear online to others and what our virtual friends "like" rather than what our face-to-face friends think. Trust me I've been there. I've scanned through my Instagram feed losing hours of my time to ponder other people's lives. I've compared mine to their's, wishing I were cooler or more hip or more put together. I would write out and reassess as I wrote a caption to perfectly depict the "natural looking" (totally planned and posed) photo I was about to post. Then I would hold my breathe as I waited to see how many likes it got, all while hoping that certain person would see it and like it (you know what I'm talking about). How silly right? But I know I'm not alone in this social media game we all play.
I often take extended social media breaks just to clear my head and get rid of all the noise. It weighs on you after a while if you don't take a break from it. Something I had to realize was that I couldn't allow social media to define me or break me. I couldn't look to social media as a way to feel loved or popular. I couldn't allow the likes on a photo or photos of others living their lives to get in the way of who I am. I couldn't allow it to cause insecurities within myself.
I had to make sure I was turning to the one who really mattered and allowing God to define me. It doesn't matter how many "likes" you have on social media or how many people follow you if you aren't spending time with the One you follow, the one who gave His all for you. I realized by all the time I was spending on social media, I was neglecting quality time with God. My thoughts were being infiltrated and negated by what the world was telling me I was or wasn't rather than being filled by the words of God's promises and who He says I am. I knew something needed to change.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm still active on social media and love it. I love seeing what my friends are up to and I love being able to stay in touch. But I had to find a balance. I had to find a way to not let it affect my mind. I had to set boundaries. I had to make sure God's voice was louder than the voices on social media. In Romans 12:2 it says, "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." It's important to study who God says you are through his word because if you can replace the negative with the positive of God's word, you won't fall for the world's standard. You'll feel better about who you are and the purpose for your life.
I hope you're encouraged to take a look at how you view social media and how you view yourself. I want to challenge you to take some time to learn about who God says you are and to take time for extended social media breaks to clear your head. God wants so much for your life and he just wants you to see yourself the way He sees you. He wants you to find your self-worth in Him and have strength through Him rather than through the world. So when you start to feel heaviness of the world coming on you from comparison on social media, turn it off and turn on some worship music then read what God's word says about you. You'll feel better in no time.