A New Perspective On Instagram Jealousy // Pink Lace Dress + Ivory Bow Heels
It’s no secret that I’ve completely put my blog on the back burner lately. Not because I have no photos, not even because I’ve been too busy to write, but because I’ve literally run out of topic ideas. But today, let’s chat about Instagram, the highlight reel.
I’m sure you’ve heard it said many times, but Instagram is only the highlight reel of a person’s life, a bunch of perfectly curated moments, heavily edited, and finished off with a cute caption. Even with that understanding though, it’s still hard to completely believe because while the person you follow may have had a bad day you don’t know about, she’s still spending her Wednesday on a private jet headed to Bermuda, all expenses paid I might add. I bet you’d welcome a bad day if it were followed by a free vacation.
I don’t think it’s truly possible to eliminate the jealousy that breeds from Instagram, but maybe a fresh perspective could help. The concept of the highlight reel is simply meant to show that no one’s life is perfect and everyone experiences challenges you’d never know about. I have blogger friends who have had miscarriages, lost their parents, been in horrible car accidents, went through messy divorces, struggled to get pregnant… The list goes on. Even yesterday, my husband and I spent the afternoon visiting a friend in the hospital, but all you know is that we had a lovely Sunday sipping coffee and eating watermelon. Because that’s the extent that I shared.
But there’s probably still that nagging voice in your head saying that bloggers have it better, because even though we all suffer through hardships, some more than others, at the end of the day, bloggers are showered with gifts and opportunities. So that’s why I focus on showing the hard work that goes into sustaining a blogging career, because then maybe people can start to see these trips and opportunities as perks of the job or industry promotions, rather than purely jealousy invoking images that cause people to feel their lives pale in comparison.
Every job has its perks. Baristas get free coffee, flight attendants get free flights, businessmen get free dinners and entertainment. At the end of the day, it’s a career choice, and making it as a blogger is very difficult. But the funny part is that as a blogger, the perks usually come before the paychecks. I started getting invited to NYFW, rubbing elbows with celebrities, and receiving mounds of beauty products before ever seeing a dime. Yet those are the kinds of perks that induce so much jealousy. So next time you start feeling jealous, ask yourself if you’d be willing to trade your paycheck for a meet and greet with Britney Spears or 500 lipsticks you couldn’t possibly ever use, because that’s a lot of what the blogger life is like.
Getting free product and event invites is the easy part. If you started a blog tomorrow with beautiful pictures and took the right steps to network and become involved in the industry, I would be shocked if you couldn’t start getting event invites and free product, at least on a small scale, by the following year. But unless you married wealthy or have someone supporting you, that's not a sustainable lifestyle and you can’t pay rent with lipstick… The hard part is pitching brands and getting compensated for your work, and that struggle doesn’t end even when you hit 100,000 followers.
In every career, there are trade-offs, struggles, people who make it big, and people who just plateau. But the path you pursue is always a choice and that choice is always yours.