I get it. People get on social media and show all kinds of pieces of themselves. Some are crazy, some are weird, some are full of opinion. I saw a post today…one of the typical posts from a social media consultant of some sort, about what you should and shouldn’t do on social media. I see similar posts pretty much several times a day. And they can be informative and worthwhile for sure.
But this one just rubbed me the wrong way. I’d only recently just posted my first IG post after being away from social media for a week or so. It wasn’t one of those “I’m Formally Taking a Social Media Hiatus” type of breaks. But for whatever reason, I was choosing to be present in my life, and I just didn’t feel like constantly chasing content or constantly thinking about whether I was doing something postable. So I just didn’t post anything for a week or two.
But back to the post. The post was a video or reel or tik tok, I don’t remember. The person was doing a normal tik tok-ish style dance. There was music in the background, and she’s making hand gestures, pointing to phrases on her screen. On beat, with each one of her gestures, a different social media tip popped up. This post was something about how you should and should not present yourself through your IG account, which is similar to a lot of social media grammers out there. I don’t remember the specific topic.
I guess some of the points were valid. However something about it just…made me want to throw up my hands. It just made me think…why can’t we just let people do what they are comfortable with?
Why can’t we show some grace on social media?
People don’t pop out of the womb feeling comfortable shimmying and shaking in front of the camera. You don’t stay on top of emerging trends and technology without having a few trials to figure it all out. We don’t all know how to be the perfect IG business account holders. And really, isn’t that ok?
I know I personally find people that make errors, have flubs, and show us their human side are people that I gravitate to moreso than the grammers that always have the perfect outfit, perfect filter, spic ‘n span homes, awesome music, dances down pat, and food that looks worthy of kudos from Gordon Ramsay himself…
Like…if I want to watch a perfect studio performance and no errors, that’s what tv productions are for.
I feel uncomfortable around perfectionists. I want to see the person who doesn’t know which button to press during a live. I want to see the organization hack in a home that doesn’t look like Marie Kondo just stopped by. I want to encounter people that are relatable.
I don’t want to see those that spent thousands on an account full of staged pics taken by a professional photographer. For me, it’s just not interesting. There’s no depth.
Be normal. Be yourself. Say “umm” 78 times. I’m here for it!
We as a social media community need to give grace. A lot of people…MOST people on social media…also have other full time jobs…jobs that are NOT the business they use instagram to promote. Most have a 9-5 which pays their bills. Most have families. Most have other important obligations. But for most, there’s something about sharing their lives on IG, whatever piece of their lives they choose to show us, that makes them happy. And we follow them because we appreciate the content they share with us.
Instead of being critical of the content, I’d prefer to be happy that people are being vulnerable and open about something in their life.
So here’s what I am choosing to do.
I am choosing to be present in my own life. Posting on socials is secondary.
I am choosing to be gracious towards the small business owner that’s trying to navigate this new uncomfortable way of promoting their business.
I’m choosing to be gracious towards the new mom that has discovered social media is a great way to find a community of new struggling moms.
I am choosing to be gracious towards that shy girl that has found a new interest and is being brave enough to reach out to a like-minded community, even though it is extremely uncomfortable for her.
People are just trying to be social, have a little fun, and share a bit about their lives or their crafts or their business. Criticism is SUCH a turn-off. Expecting perfection is unrealistic. I’m going to stop expecting social media perfection from myself, and just seek to enjoy the community.
Does social media perfectionism intimidate you? Or do you just get out there and have fun?
Let me know!