You’re Only Worth What People Think Of You In The Digital Age


I am not the first to comment on this and I will not be the last. I think social media sites are fantastic, and I am a proud user. However, there are some new “cultural norms” that are developing now that we’re knee deep in the digital age that I’m not so sure about. What I’m talking about is the way we define ourselves and how we spend our time now that everything is all about what we post and show/tell people we’re doing.

Relationships have to be posted online to be “official” these days. People say you’re disconnected from society if you don’t have a Facebook or something, but I disagree. We are allowing so many people to be clued into whatever is happening in our lives, and we spend all of our time taking pictures to post and show other people. Let me elaborate on that.

What I don’t understand is when people post entire albums of themselves in the same pose with another person for 23 pictures, and then like, a photo of the sunset. I don’t know where you were or what you were supposed to be doing, but how much time did you spend posing with different people in the same way having someone take a picture of you? Since when did it become okay to post an entire album where you are in every single picture? Hasn’t anybody realized how strange that is?

Have our lives become more about what we show to people than how we actually live? It’s like we spend more time perfection our social media profiles than going out and enjoying ourselves. Since when did pictures become a symbol of social validation and not just a way to remember some great times?

Has this made us narcissistic? Who really cares or even wants status updates about our lives? Why do some people chronically over-share very personal details about their lives? It’s like we’ve completely collapsed into desperation over wanting to appear “cool” and be validated by others.

You’re all entitled to do whatever the hell you want, I’m not saying anybody should or shouldn’t do anything. I’m not even saying there aren’t some potential benefits to the way in which we share our information so frequently– it provides a sense of contentedness, we can stay in touch with friends we otherwise wouldn’t be able to, etc. But it is a problem when we are refocusing ourselves on living for the sake of validation from others in a physical, literal sense. Because we’re always seeking that within our own minds, but now we have a way of projecting it onto the internet (literally) and I think it’s resulted in this lifestyle we’re slowly falling into: one of nearly-sole concern about what other people think.

Want to get invited to exclusive private parties where you live? Thought Catalog can arrange that. Sign up here.

image – Johan Larsson