How to Overcome the Envy that Social Media Causes

Posted February 16, 2018 by Kalyn in God, How To, mental health, Social Media / 14 Comments

I’ll be the first to say that I love social media. Just ask my husband! I love that it allows me to connect with people all over the freaking world. It allows me to develop genuine friendships with people across the United States. When I was feeling extreme loneliness due to postpartum depression, I was able to find comfort within Facebook mom groups. If I’m feeling uninspired before I do my makeup, I turn to social media for inspiration. Social media is also a great place to learn about new things – social media is how I discovered bullet journaling, after all.

However, social media can do a lot of harm too. It’s very easy to look at social media and think “why isn’t my life like that?”. And people can do this over just about any subject matter too: marriage, parenthood, weight loss, house keeping, makeup, etc. You name it and people can negatively point out how their life lacks in that arena. It can lead to discontentment, jealousy, and a discouraged attitude.

For me personally, my areas of struggle are with my daughter, my makeup, and my weight loss journey. It’s very easy for me to see posts like that and immediately struggle with the aforementioned things. However, I’ve developed an intentional sequence of thoughts to help myself think through these struggles.

1. I remind myself that social media is a highlight reel

First and foremost, this is what I think about. People share their highest, happiest, most excited moments on social media because that is human nature. They’re excited and they want to share that excitement with others. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that – it’s just important to remember. You never truly knows what goes on behind closed doors.

With all that being said, I try very hard to be intentional with my social media posts. I do have a very blessed life, but I work hard not to over-sensationalize it. Over-sensationalizing or romanticizing just perpetuates the illusion that my life is perfect; and if you know me in real life then you know that isn’t true. My goal with my social media platforms is to remain authentic and transparent, without simultaneously making my platforms a dumping ground. Because I also don’t believe in airing your dirty laundry either, but that’s for another post entirely…

2. I look at the big picture

Social media makes it really easy to hyper-focus on one specific aspect of your life or of a particular relationship. For example, let’s say your husband never gets your flowers but Jane is always posting about how often her husband surprises her with a bouquet. That makes you hyper-focus on just one aspect of your own relationship with your husband. Before you know it, you and your husband are in an argument because he never shows his appreciation for you by bringing home some flowers. I mean, it’s not that hard to do, right?!

When I start feeling the jealousy and discontentment sneaking in, I ask myself this question: but what are some things he does do to show his appreciation?. Or any variation of that question that pertains to the topic. Write a list if you have to! Once I’ve done that, it allows me to either see that 1) it’s really not that big of a problem and I need to let it go or 2) it is that big of a problem and I need to work on a solution.

3. I use the unfollow feature with no shame

Every social media platform has one! Don’t be afraid to use it. I use mine liberally. I’m trying to grow, expand, and cultivate a completely new life in 2018, and I don’t need to be distracted by what others post. And I can’t control what they post, but I certainly can control if I see it or not.

Don’t worry – they’ll never know you unfollowed them!

Use these three tips to overcome the envy that social media causes! Click To Tweet

Final Thoughts

12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:12-13, NIV

Being content in all things is a spiritual discipline that I believe we cultivate our entire lives. Social media makes it hard, but verse 13 tells us that we can have victory in this area of our lives.

Below are some books I found geared towards encouragement! These are affiliate links and I will receive a small commission, at no cost to you. Please see my disclosure for full details.

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14 responses to “How to Overcome the Envy that Social Media Causes

    • Kalyn

      Exactly! I think so many people are worried and concerned about the social repercussions of deleting people, but I firmly believe that continuing to follow people like that is just a disservice to yourself.

  1. This is great and I really needed to read this today. It is so easy to get sucked in to social media and every one else’s life. I need to step back and think about everything that I have and how blessed I am. I’m always wanting to be thinner, have better photos, better creativity etc. Not one person is the same, so why should our social media be that way? Thank you!

  2. Great reminders! So important not to compare our struggles or the more mundane parts of our lives to someone else’s highlight reel. I’m trying to check myself at each post or picture I look at and think “I’m I using this to inspire myself and encourage others or am I just being a green-eyed monster?”

    • Kalyn

      Great question to be asking yourself! The one thing I’m okay with bragging about is God – I try to do that as much as possible 😉

  3. Great article, I have been guilty of letting social media envy influence me for sure – usually blogging related though! hahaha. I have to remind myself that we are all on our own paths and as you mentioned, social media is just the highlight reel.

    • Kalyn

      I think we all have our moments where we let social media affect us – what’s important is being aware of it and then fixing it. thanks for stopping by!

  4. There are lot of times that social media affect me, when my friend posted a photo of their beautiful home, brand new cars, high-end mobile phones etc., I can’t help but question myself, “what’s wrong with my strategies, why my plans failed?”. But as they say, check your heart. Never let your “envious mind” rot your spirit. Your time will come and no one will stop that!

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