Vulnerability is the Key
The images presented on social media are subject to criticism. Most of them show a false version of our lives. Our stories are the ones that reflect us in the best light. Rarely do we see honest and vulnerable posts.
No one goes on Facebook and posts: ‘I’m having a hard time’ or’ I’m not coping very well today’.
We post shiny smiling pictures of our families getting along with each other, while in real life we struggle to keep the family together. We show off our new car and post selfies from our vacation in Mexico while bills pile up and we wonder how to pay them all. We post images of our children getting engaged or getting great marks in school or winning their soccer game and gloss over the late nights and drug use.
This happens in face to face encounters as well. We meet a friend on the street and ask — How are you? Inevitably the answer is –I’m fine, how are you?
These exchanges are considered social niceties but they also reflect our tendency to keep the truth of our lives secret from one another.
The irony is we are all privy to this secret falsehood.
Everyone has something going on in their lives that’s not ideal. We all do or say regrettable things, make mistakes and struggle in our day to day lives. We feel insecure and vulnerable and sometimes feel out of control. We keep this from each other as if it is a huge secret and delude ourselves that it’s the truth.
This false idea of how well everyone else is doing in their lives results in feelings of inadequacy. When we don’t share our true selves, it’s painful and we become jealous. That turns into envy and competition.
Companies use this envy and competition to market their products to us as the latest thing we need in order to level up or keep up with our peers. They tell us we’re incomplete without a new phone or the latest in fashion. This results in a belief that we need to look or act a certain way to be fulfilled.
There is a way to slowly open a door to the truth in our relationships with each other.
If we sit and listen to our hearts and love ourselves completely, it’s a step toward truth. Accepting the reality of our current situation in life creates a small opening toward being able to share our truth with others.
If you slowly reveal your honest self to others, they will feel safe in revealing themselves to you.
Then you can share the secrets of your heart.