“I was going through my Instagram feed the other day. You know when you just go through your own feed to be like ‘…what does a guy who has a crush on me maybe see?'” comedian Nikki Glaser rhetorically asks in the most recent episode of You Up with Nikki Glasser – the podcast version of her SiriusXM radio show of the same name.
The question is posed tangentially as Glaser muses about her tendency to project her insecurities onto what she calls hot Instagram models. But in this deep dive of her profile, she takes pause in a striking revelation. “…I realized I was getting jealous of my own self from my Instagram feed. And I was like ‘…you were so perfect. Why do you ever get insecure?'” she said in the episode titled “Two Phones.”
Glaser recognizes that the images she posts are not as authentic to her real life as she had believed at time of post, subsequently telling us (herself, perhaps?) that she had always thought she was being “real” in her online activity – retracting this statement and definitively calling her Instagram profile “…curated to be the most attractive moments of my life.”
Surely this idea is nothing new. Sentiments (that are warranted and carry weight but have almost become trite cliches) proclaim that social media is “the highlight reel” and we as consumers are privy to no one’s “behind-the-scenes” but our own. Novel or not, it’s refreshing to hear someone so successful and attractive share her own struggles with recognizing the chasm between curated and authentic. “Sometimes I convince myself… [a model] didn’t doctor this photo, she just is naturally beautiful and every photo of her is beautiful,” Glaser divulges in a stream-of-consciousness manner.
With the idea of other or better or different (which ultimately is so subjective) accessible at any given moment, surely it is no shock that this will come with adverse reverberations. The/Thirty reports “…research has found that women who report frequently comparing themselves to other women, especially women in the media, are more likely to show signs of negative mood and body image.” Glaser speaks to a larger, overarching truth: submersion in online images plague self-worth and distort self-perception.
So what to do with this information? Surely scrolling through our feed is a monotonous yet not-so-easy to break habit. Nikki concludes the episode, titled “Two Phones,” for those interested in listening, with a challenge for listeners: hid photos, profiles, etc. on Instagram (or any platform, for that matter) that makes someone feel bad about themselves. This is not to be labeled petty or spiteful, rather an act of self-preservation. “They’ll never know,” she says earnestly. “And see what happens when you stop seeing their stuff. You don’t miss it.”
Perhaps this information should all boil down in the form of a simple reminder to you. Life is not happening within the phone – even for those who seem to present solely as if this is the case.
Take care of yourselves,