The WSJ, The Root and BYP remind us that social-media-fueled inadequacy doesn’t have to be the norm
Yesterday, I called my mama and took a sunshine-filled walk to stop myself from spiraling. Progress. “I’ve gotta take it a bit easier on myself,” I tweeted moments prior. My sorority sister, a Black woman from California whose love for food, art galleries, the written word and rap music helped form an organic friendship, liked the tweet.
Remembering to handle ourselves with care is especially important when setting the tone in a new year. So, cheers to publications that incorporate lifestyle coverage of different lived experiences. Recently, Professor Peggy Drexler penned an op-ed entitled “How to Resist Our Age of Resentment” for the Wall Street Journal. A couple weeks before, Janelle Harris’s elegant “For Colored Girls in Their 30s and 40s Who Feel Like Life May Have Passed Them By” on The Root spoke to my spirit, despite being in my late twenties. Both articles deserve a read and some reflection.
Being digital natives—or digitally adept—provides perks. With swift keystrokes, device dictation (Siri got us thinking we are the Jetsons), and thumb taps, we answer questions. We compare news reports, observe cultural trends and see how ideas perform across platforms. We might also nosedive into other people’s lives, stumble into anonymous users’ cowardly comments or fixate on curated lifestyles. We might want to change our appearances, experiences or current locations due, in some measure, to digital influences.
With the Internet-as-bulletin-board phenomenon, people can believe struggle is passe, uninterrupted productivity is the norm and people still shooting for their dreams ought to be sidelined. But that is not how any of this works. The instant consumption of Internet posts does not always convey the dogged determinism and bouts of insecurity people often experience when improving.
Which articles inspire you to, as elders say, “keep on keeping on”? How can we sustain an online culture that supports other people and preserves care for and patience with ourselves?