Hustle Culture

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Within a few seconds of opening Instagram or Tiktok, we are most likely to be met with a video of someone who has their life together; they are showing you how early they’re waking up, the healthy breakfast they are making and the workouts they are doing. They’ll show you how productive their day is, how extensive their nighttime routine is, and all the steps to their self-care routine. Meanwhile if all you did was wake up that day in a good mood and you feel content with that, you will automatically feel as if you haven’t done enough.

Social Media is getting increasingly better at trying to convince you that hustle culture is the mindset you should be embodying at every moment of the day, as if doing the bare minimum to get through is unacceptable. It shows you that you should be productive all day, and if not then you aren’t maximizing your time and taking advantage of every second. The New York Times explains that this movement “is obsessed with striving, relentlessly positive, devoid of humor, and — once you notice it — impossible to escape”. As if navigating the real world wasn’t challenging enough as it is, we now have added virtual pressure to constantly have it together. It is as if there is now this sense of urgency to always be in work mode, to accomplish goals as quickly as we can, and to never shut off our brains. This can create a negative mindset because as explained here, “hustle culture breads an ongoing toxic environment where if you spend too much time on anything non-work-related, you feel guilty”. We are expected to live breathe and love work, and anything outside of that is considered a waste of time.

Would you say that you enjoy hustle culture, or are you are against it?

Facebook: Do you feel pressured by social media, or do you indirectly put pressure on others on social media? Read all about the negative effects of hustle culture here.

Twitter: Hustle Culture = The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly #hustleculture

The Pressure of Valentine’s Day

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The holiday of love is all fun and games – unless you’re single or in a complicated situation, where you don’t need the extra reminder of it. Social media has used Valentine’s Day as a great marketing tactic to sell lavish gifts, costly dinners, and overrated experiences. It has convinced us that if we are not giving or receiving the latter, then we aren’t doing it right.

Social media can negatively influence our perception of ourselves in a variety of different ways. For instance, Forbes says that “on this day, the social pressure can be overwhelming. Valentine’s Day is like society collectively deciding to be politically incorrect toward single people”. It instills a bias within individuals that if they are not dedicating this day to romance and that they are treating it like any other day, that it isn’t acceptable. Although some choose to not celebrate or they simply disagree with what the holiday represents, there is an added pressure to follow the norm and be in favour of it. It also encourages you to put on a performance for social media, so that you can show off what you’re doing for someone or what has been done for you. It “is the one day of the year that you’re expected to be better looking, a better lover, a more fascinating conversationalist, the buyer of the perfect gift, and the planner of the once-in-a-lifetime experience”. That of course isn’t legitimized until it has been posted for friends and followers to comment and approve; this can easily make others who are alone on Valentine’s Day feel isolated more than they possibly already do, or make them feel like they should be doing the same.

On a day that is supposed to be filled with positivity and love, it can create the complete opposite feelings, unfortunately caused by peer pressure. It creates unrealistic expectations of what the day should be, it asks you to meet a standard you may not be able to achieve or that you may not want to even achieve. Although it is meant to promote meaningful gestures done out of love, social media portrays a fantasy of what Valentine’s Day SHOULD look like; have you ever fallen for it?

Facebook: Do you believe in the magic of Valentine’s Day only because social media told you to do so? read more about it here.

Twitter: Valentine’s Day = A social media curated fantasy? #socialmedia #valentinesday

Social Media Detox

We have all heard by now of the different ways in which we can perform a detox to get rid of the toxins lurking in our system; this can be done by doing juice cleanses, avoiding certain categories of food, and so on. Although these have positive effects of on our physical health, have you ever considered doing a social media detox to benefit your mental health?

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We are all victims of mindless scrolling on social media apps – opening up our apps right after closing them to see if we missed anything, refreshing our pages to see what comes up next and constantly keeping up with what our friends are doing. Have you ever taken a step back and realized the attachment you have to your phone and your social media apps, or maybe even realized you pick up your phone for no real reason other than it being a habit?

We seem to have a continuous need to keep up to date with what we deem to be relevant information found online, however it it further disconnects us from reality. With the constant need to update and be updated, we sense the need to share every moment of our days. It has been said that “if you’re living everything through the lens of social media instead of directly interacting with it, your experiences will be of lower quality and become less memorable”. We become so focused on the idea of sharing moments, that we forget to live in the present and be grateful for what we’re experiencing.

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Social media can also potentially cause harm to existing friendships and relationships that you have. With wanting to share every moment we consider funny or exciting whether it be about what we’re doing or the people we’re with, we don’t necessarily think of the repercussions. Medical News Today explains that “links and quotes shared out of context, or misplaced jokes can all be doubly damaging in a medium that encourages quick sharing and rushed reading”. We went from sharing news directly with our friends in person or via phone call, to instead making it public for followers and strangers to view. This is both a lack of privacy for those we are exposing to the world, and a lack of transparency due to the lack of explanation that is attached to it.

With all of that being said, these so called “first world problems” could all be avoided if we simply lived in the present moment and refrained from constantly going on these apps. Unfortunately, that is much easier said than done considering we now check our phones first thing when we wake up everyday as if it’s the morning paper. They are a growing addiction that are becoming detrimental to our health; as technology evolves, we will need to evolve with it to learn how to better manage our screen time and ensure we remain present in the real world and not only in the virtual world.

If someone challenged you to a social media detox and you were asked to delete your apps temporarily, would you be able to successfully stay away from them?

Facebook: Have you ever taken a second to consider how social media is negatively affecting you? Read this blog post to find out more, and to discover whether or not you could benefit from a social media detox.

Twitter: #socialmediadetox… ever heard of it? Read about the negative effects of social media and see if temporarily deleting your social media apps would be right for you.

Instagram: An Illusion? (COM0011)

Let’s face it – when it comes to the art that is posting on Instagram, we publish nothing short of our absolute best moments. The celebrations, the accomplishments, the degrees, the anniversaries. We show off our best angles, our favourite edited pictures, and our curated moments. And for what?

Comparison Is The Thief of Joy

It can be difficult to decipher right from wrong and real from fake on social media. As we consume what we’re scrolling through, we dive deeper into people’s lives, meanwhile reflecting on our own; it can become second nature to compare ourselves to others, and question whether or not we are good enough.

  • Should I be at that stage in my life?
  • Am I successful enough?
  • Why don’t I look pretty like she does?

Time Magazine explains that “social media posts can also set unrealistic expectations and create feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem”. Although it is our conscious choice to keep scrolling, Instagram paints the narrative that people are living in a fairytale-like world. With no negativity advertised, we succumb to the idea that people are living perfect lives without even realizing the impact that has on our mindsets. Why would we ever believe otherwise, when that’s all we see? It becomes challenging to make the clear distinction between the highlight reels that people post, and the actual human being behind the portrait who in reality is living a very average life like we are.

The Pressure to Fit In

It is in our nature to want to fit in and be a part of something that is bigger than us. We want to feel as though we are contributing to a higher good, we want a sense of community, and we want to blend in with the crowd. However, how does one do so when we subconsciously know that what we are seeing isn’t reality? It has been said that “the addictive nature of Instagram, its emphasis on ‘best moments’, filters that enhance skin tone or lighten the eyes, and the dominance of influencers who promote a glamorous lifestyle, can create a toxic environment”. People only post what they want you to see and believe, and it is rare to come across someone who is sharing their low points. With that being said, we all crave relatability; we want to see our favourite celebrities, content creators, and individuals that we admire, share the not so curated moments with us. It gives us a sense of comfort knowing that the people that we put on such a high pedestal, are human just like we are. Unfortunately, the American Psychological Association states that “by design, the app capitalizes on users’ biological drive for social belonging—and nudges them to keep on scrolling”. We know better than to feed in to what we are consuming, yet we are unable to resist the temptation.

In a virtual world filled with edited moments, it is important to take a step back and reflect on our own personal victories rather than chase what’s next based off what Instagram is telling us we should be doing. It can also be an opportunity to appreciate where we are in our own journey, and recognize that just because our lives aren’t identical to those we follow, we are still enough. Granted, that is easier said than done. Have you fallen for Instagram’s illusion?

Facebook: Go read this blog post titled “Instagram: An Illusion?” for more information on the realities of this social media platform.

Twitter: Have 5 minutes to spare? Read this blog post! “Instagram: An Illusion?” #instagram #curatedmoments #socialmedia #blogpost