Recently I stumbled upon the blog The Financial Diet, because one of my favorite bloggers, Allie at Why Knot posted an article from this blog in a weekly round up. Since then, I have found myself constantly checking out The Financial Diet because of its interesting articles and helpful budgeting tips. Over the last few weeks, I have been focusing an immense amount of attention on my budget and fixed expenses to help find ways to save. I highly recommend checking out The Financial Diet for lifestyle posts with financial advice sprinkled together in a cute blog!
The other week, The Financial Diet posted this article and I could not help but understand the author’s dilemma. Becoming a blogger (albeit a newbie) has been a wonderful creative outlet for me, as well as a somewhat regular source of pressure. I want to constantly create content that is me, but relates to others, and is upbeat and positive. This also translates to my Instagram and Twitter account. I feel like there is this constant struggle to have the most picturesque life. Instagram only tells one side of the story, not how much that waffle cost you or how long it took you to take that “spontaneous” picture of flowers outside a beautiful brownstone apartment. Clearly this is not a pressure that only bloggers face, but anyone who is active on social media.
I felt for Jasmine who recognizes the strain that this need to have a seemingly perfect life online has impacted her bank account. Although I would love to buy fresh flowers and soy lattes daily, right now that is just not a smart way to spend my income. I am not in debt, and I am so paranoid that I will fall into debt that I am pretty neurotic about paying my credit cards weeks before the minimum is due. That is not to say though, that I don’t understand the pressure to appear like I am living the high life. Being right out of college with a new found steady income clearly makes it not the time to spend money on non essentials.
On the flip side of the budgetary constraints, it is pretty exhausting trying to appear perfect on social media, and let me tell you my life is definitely not perfect. The last few months have been filled with a multitude of challenges, from a new job, new location, friendship changes, and a recurring health concern that certainly has taken its toll. My life is far from perfect. This is not to diminish the many great aspects of my life that I cherish, but some days it is a fine balance.
Interestingly, some of my lowest moments in the last few years were the most memorable and important. The night I cried in my dorm room to my two closest friends about a boy who wasn’t worth it anymore. That moment when I realized my sorority little didn’t need me to have it “all together” all the time, and that instead we were an equal support system. Best friends just wanting the best for each other, no hierarchy or veil of perfection necessary. When I sat between my best friend and her boyfriend watching How I Met You Mother, crying to them about how “no one understands,” they were my surrogate Mom and Dad for the night. None of these moments are documented, and yet they are forever a part of me. I look back and don’t see the pain or the hurt, but rather the friendships and love that surrounded me, and no Instagram post will ever capture that moment.
I want to try to always be as honest and real on this small corner of the internet as I possibly can (without bombarding you!). Because at the end of the day, my favorite blog posts come from the bloggers who let their guard down and tell their readers the problems or struggles that they are facing. It’s that helpful reminder that yes, life is tricky, but hey we can all make it through! And if you need a little boost of realistic pictures on Instagram, check out the account by Real Simple magazine called Women In Real Life, (it’s pretty hilarious!).
Perfection is pretty overrated anyway, I would much rather know the good and the bad, because at the end of the day that is what makes up this crazy, wonderful thing we call life.