Do You - All Day, Every Day Posted on 5 Nov 01:32 , 0 comments

A young lady by the name of Essena O'Neill took to the airwaves earlier this week to denounce social media. She wanted all of us to know that the images we've seen of her on Instagram are largely fairy tale and have nothing to do with real life.

Her critics were as strongly opinionated as her supporters, citing that she only made this huge announcement to continue her reign of popularity among her fans using a different tactic. Whether that is true remains to be seen, but I do know for sure, Ms. O'Neill hit the nail on the head.

Don't get me wrong, social media is great! Whether it's Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram, I love being able to connect with others, all around the world, for both business and pleasure. Some of the danger that comes along with it though, is when we start to feel like other people have it better than we do based on images we see.

Essena O'Neill is a young, pretty entrepreneur. She placed herself in a lucrative position with ease - she is a marketer's dream in just about every imaginable way. But she knows as well as many other older and/or wiser souls - it's all for show, and it had to come to an end. She didn't fall for her own hype and she wants others to understand that they shouldn't buy too much into it either. 

Apps like Facebook and Instagram are a lot like television. It's easy to fantasize that your favorite movie star is as sweet and wonderful off screen as she was in her latest movie, until you find out she's been beating her real-life boyfriend on a regular basis. Pretty women with perfect hair, makeup and bodies rack up the followers on Instagram, but for all we know any one of them could be living in a cheap motel or barely able to pay the rent. You never know what people are really going through behind the scenes and it might scare the life out of you to find out what exactly it is. 

It's crucial to 'keep it real' in your own head when you engage with others online, especially if you don't have a personal, off-line, real-time relationship with them. (You know, when you see someone more than once a year not including holidays and they'll actually answer your texts and phone calls with some regularity.) No one goes on Facebook (well some folks do) to tell you how fat, ugly, poor, lonely and unsuccessful he believes himself to be. Most people are doing about as well as the next person, but either way, what you see in pictures and captions are rarely even half the story. The only life story really worth engaging in is your own, and it won't be happening at your keyboard.