The idea of “keeping up with the Joneses” has been around for decades now. It used to specifically describe attempting to compete with your neighbors so that you could show that you had the same level of status as them. However, over the last decade, the idea of keeping up with the Joneses has become so much more significant that it’s kind of ridiculous. There’s one simple thing that you can point to as to the cause of this: the internet. Now, this is not an attempt to say that the internet is bad or anything like that, but one thing that the internet has done is that it’s made it far easier to compare ourselves to other people. Here are just a few ways that living our lives online has caused up to feel bad about our lives compared to other people.
FOMO is a relatively new term to describe something that people have been dealing with for centuries. It stands for “fear of missing out.” It became much more pronounced in the era of social media where you were suddenly inundated with images of your friends doing amazing and interesting things and feeling as though there was something wrong with you for not doing that kind of thing. The problem is that is then lead people to try and create a persona on social media that showed how cool and fun they were, which leads to other people dealing with FOMO and doing the same thing. It’s a vicious cycle that leads to people feeling bad about themselves and more and more people create this fake image of their lives to share online.
The other thing that the internet has allowed us to do is to see into just about every aspect of various celebrities lives. Sure, we’ve always been able to read about celebrities in magazines, but the level of access we get thanks to things like Twitter and Instagram is ridiculous. The big problem is that people try to compare their lives to the luxury that celebrities enjoy and they’re obviously going to end up feeling bad about themselves. Just look at these 77 Diamonds Celebrity Engagement Trends. Many of the rings that celebrities wear are far more expensive than most people can ever afford which can end up making them feel as though their own engagement is somehow inadequate.
Lifestyle blogs are fantastic. They can give people a glimpse into other people’s lives and get advice and information as well as find that there are other people who go through what they do. However, there are some blogs that exist purely to show how much better someone is than you and they can cause real problems. Many of these blogs boast about expensive places that the blogger has been too or showing off their amazing body. There’s nothing wrong with this by itself, but many people end up feeling as though this is what normal life should be like and end up feeling incredibly dissatisfied with their own lives.
The reality is that most of the things that you see online are only ever the version of people’s lives that they want you to see. Most people probably feel the same way you do about these things. The best way to stop this kind of competition is simply for us all to enjoy our lives and to stop constantly comparing ourselves to each other.
*This is a collaborative post
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