Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Thoughts on Social Media, Where I am in the World Today, and an Update...

I just finished watching the Victoria’s Secret Swim Special. Honestly, seeing the most beautiful and desirable women in the world is so fascinating to me when they’ve landed to most lucrative job with the most exposure in the modeling world possible. They made their lives perfect. To every detail. Every moment is paradise was perfection as they talked about how much they loved their modeling job and how excited they were to be there. Dancing under the stars with Maroon 5 serenading them in the firelight, wonderful food and incredible locations…VIP all the way, with an incredible amount of exposure and emphasis on the models themselves...there's no other job like it. But a little part of me felt empty when it was over. Maybe like they had played it up so much. Maybe like it wasn’t real. 

That’s the thing with social media, advertisements, and TV. The only things that are highlighted are the perfect, the beautiful, the flawless. A few nights ago while unable to sleep, I had a few thoughts on the media to share…but before I do, I‘ll explain my current location…in a way that isn’t through filtered effects or carefully thought-out captions.

I’ve been gone for nearly a month! I left early February to travel to Greece, where I am now on a modeling contract. Once I found out how hard it would be for me to continue with my degree, my university put together a custom degree plan in order for me to pursue my degree as well as my career. Bellevue University did an article on me that explains it better:
“I felt like this was an industry that I would be able to make a difference in,” Shaddix said. “I love to travel, and am comfortable in front of the camera, so that seemed the best opportunity for me. It’s something that I’m really passionate about, so it was kind of a no-brainer.” Shaddix will be living in Athens during her stay in Greece. She hopes to visit the Greek islands of Santorini and Mykonos as well. Quick stops in Norway, Munich, and London could also be part of the trip” (Bellevue University, 2015). 
(You can read the rest of the article here)

So the bottom line is that I’m in Athens, Greece right now! I also visited to Oslo, Norway, and Munich, Germany. It was kinda on the down low because I didn’t feel like making it a big deal, and I wanted to make sure that it was going to happen before I blasted it everywhere. I also want to make sure that I don’t come across like I’m processing everything perfectly like the media, because not everything is perfect, and this isn’t the Victoria’s Secret Swim Special going on here. I want to be real, but I really am loving it here. The food, the culture, the people, the history, and the incredible scenery.

But the other night I couldn’t sleep. I think it had something to do with my thoughts on social media and how our culture is immersed so heavily in it now. This is 3 AM thoughts, (which are not always on point) but I want to share.

We live in society founded on likes
and we're nice to people who like us
We question the friendship of someone doesn't follow us back
and the photos we post collect dust
But as we navigate through favorites and likes
we say we’re ‘connected’, but at what price?

We have the method down to a science, it's considered an art
to be able to favorite, like, thumbs- up, and heart
We sneakily comment with emojis and letters
in order for people to like us better
But it is all a fa├žade, it's all pretend
it really is only means to an end
To the lengths that we go in order to conceal
or the parts of ourselves that we choose to reveal

If all we can focus on is favorites and hearts
re tweeting, and playing this game of smarts
We lose sight of what's important, by living a lie
that what we have posted wasn't quite right inside
When posting is filtered through and through
that even the picture doesn't look true
In pleads for followers, praise, and approval
we don't realize it is the cause of our removal
from WHO loves us more than we could ever deserve
Who came from heaven in order to serve
that HE IS our admirer; and He's who adores
Every blemish, unfiltered and with nothing more
He loves throughout every flaw
Even to those who feel like they can’t be loved at all
He is the Almighty, yet created your soul
and in Him, we can become whole.

We weren’t made for follow-backs, thumbs-up, and comments
feeling connected is just an empty promise.