In our everyday lives we often try to impress people with our knowledge, our strength, or perhaps our humour, but what about our online selves? Yes, it would appear that in the 21st Century we now have to worry about multiple identities…wasn’t one enough? When we create profiles on social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube, we are carefully selecting what we share and don’t share with the world. Now, social media isn’t all that bad, I’ll be the first to say I love being able to maintain relationships quite easily with friends and family around the world, but it isn’t just about maintaining a relationship…it’s about the maintaining the authenticity of that relationship.
I oftentimes think I am way funnier via text message or Twitter than I am in real life. Why? Because I spend 10 minutes or more crafting content I’m going to share so that it’s the perfect combination of wit, self-deprecation, and charm.
But that isn’t really me.
I’m Parker, a socially awkward, prematurely greying gay man from Oklahoma trying to sound Canadian. Doesn’t sound so cool, does it? But who cares? I’ve gotten to the point where I’ve learned the awkward moments are the ones I love most and that I could actually label 99.9% of the people I know as awkward at some point or another.
So, yes, we will probably keep taking 20-30 selfies before we get just the right pose or carefully craft a tweet for way too long, but that’s okay…as long as we know that there will always be a difference between our on- and off-line selves. Embrace your quirks, and don’t compare your offline self to the one you’ve spent way too long rehearsing. It isn’t genuine, and we like the real you more anyway.
I found this video to be incredibly relevant for me. I hope you enjoy it!
Calgary Spark is a collection of stories told by members and friends of the church alike. Each person's story is helping to shape our community in new ways.