We are living during what I refer to as the era of "Generation Like My Status" or "Generation Follow Me." There is a level of desperation happening in social networks such as Facebook, YouTube and Instagram that it is palpable. In April of 2012 I joined Instagram. I did so as a fun and easy way to journal my day to day life using the medium of photography. I didn't even know what a # was used for at first. Slowly I learned that if I took my shirt off and I tagged the photo with #gay and/or #instagay then guys searching for other guys would see it and they would "like" the photo. That didn't come as a surprise since we've all heard the saying "sex sells" (even though in this case its just skin and bones. I guess there's a market for that.)
What really caught me off guard was what I would learn next. I had thought of instagram as a place to share photos of LIFE - places, people and things. It never occurred to me that some guys would use it to cruise and flirt. I realized that cruising was taking place when out of my 300+ photos the ones that were getting all the "likes" by guys were the photos of my face and my body. Flattering I suppose, who doesn't like to be liked? But very quickly it became predictable. I would post a beautiful picture of a cloud and it would get a fraction of "likes" compared to say the above photo of my skinny ass.
We've all seen it, on American Idol, a disaster of an audition where the person auditioning truly believes he or she can sing. When the judges ask the person "who told you you could sing?" they usually answer with "everybody told me that I can sing." It's this peculiar social behavior that can make a person easily addicted to feedback from others. It is the beginning stages of group think. You don't question who you are because if others like you then that must be who you really are. However by doing so you forget, neglect, and ignore the authentic you. We have all heard it say "sharing is caring." May I suggest that when we, you, I share of ourselves let it be a gift to others and not a hidden request for approval. It will be not only a gift to others but most importantly a gift you give yourself. There's a difference between saying "HERE I AM WORLD" and saying "PLEASE LOVE ME WORLD."
ps - Please like this post and share it with your friends on Facebook, if you don't I may kill myself ;-)