We read so much about others, anymore.
You’ve seen it. I’ve seen it. Everywhere we go, people are scrolling on their smart phones. At their child’s basketball game, while waiting for a haircut, while waiting for church to start! It’s everywhere. And most of the time – we are reading about others.
Twitter. Facebook. Instagram. Tumblr. News. Email. We’ve become “scanners.” Our eyes scan up and down feeds; waiting and stopping only on that picture or words that catch our eyes and heart.
Why are we so interested in others? Do we think their lives are more beautiful than ours? More mysterious? More “happening?” Or are we actively engaged in loving them, cheering them on in their milestones, and crying with them over their missteps and tragedies?
There is a wonderful thing about online social life; it can bring people closer together. It can quick-start a conversation when you see someone in real life, because of something you saw or read about. It can reunite. But there is also a real danger involved in reading and watching the lives of others all the time. We can feel like we fall short. We can lose our desire to speak and communicate and grow in real life – instead relying on the harbor and shelter a screen can give us from the fear of rejection.
The thing about online life and real life? There needs to be a balance. Enjoy following and hearing about the things in other people’s lives online. Let those things inspire and motivate you. Never let them make you feel “less than” or “boring.” Everyone has boring days and not-so-glamorous days and those are the ones we fail to share. It’s always good to remember that. And in the process of enjoying the facet of online life; don’t forget to live “real life.” Meet new people. Talk. Communicate. Hug. Connect. Love and be loved. This is the real outlet where your heart will get filled and fill the heart of others as well!
It’s too easy to lose sight of reality when we see things in print that only tell a part of a story. Words on a screen can be only a sentence or a paragraph long, but real life can speak volumes. Blend both into your heart so you can stay focused on your priorities, values, and self-worth. You don’t have to give up one or the other – just keep them in check.