Why Do We Share So Much of Our Lives?

I was having trouble finding inspiration for a blog post this week, and I almost let this week slide without one until I found that inspiration yesterday (which reminded me that sometimes ideas have to come to me vs. me seeking them out). I’ve been a loyal listener of the Millennial podcast by Megan Tan since it came out. I enjoy listening to her talk and, being a millennial myself, I can relate to a lot of what she talks about. Her most recent episode focused on how we are sharing more intimate details of our lives now than we ever have before. But why? While there is certainly some narcissism contained in all of us, focused on getting attention, I don’t think this is the biggest reason. I thought a lot more about it, especially because I have recently shared a whole lot about myself with all of you over the past couple of months.

 

In Megan’s episode, she discusses how before she started her podcast, she was a very private person. But then she found herself giving information out to her listeners that she had never even shared with family members, and she didn’t know why she felt comfortable doing so. Then she discovered that through her podcast, she was connecting with other people and helping herself to grow in a meaningful way. In this episode, she had a listener reach out to her because he wanted to tell his story anonymously. He discussed how he came out as gay many years ago to his mom, how she told him to hide it, how he lived a double life for a long time, how he eventually contracted the HIV virus and how he is now in a fulfilling relationship. He’s happy, but still scared of releasing these details of his life to loved ones. Yet he reached out to Megan because he felt comfortable with her, because she had paved a road for him by being open and exposing her own vulnerabilities.

 

I initially lacked inspiration for a blog post this week because I’ve had a couple of depressive episodes in the last week that have left me feeling tired and unmotivated. I found myself wanting to revisit some bad habits recently, but I refrained because there was a little voice in my head reminding me that I’ve come very far and that I can’t mess up this progress. I acknowledged these setbacks and have vowed to keep pushing forward, knowing that I may have more obstacles to deal with along the way. So rather than engage in bad habits, I’m writing out my thoughts here instead, and I plan to continue doing so for as long as I can.  

 

This morning I received one of my “Notes From The Universe”, which I signed up to receive a couple of months ago. Of course, there is no hard truth in these, but for some reason I just like them and find them motivational. This morning’s seemed to play well into my current issues, and appropriately related to this blog post:

Sometimes, when you’re feeling your lowest, the real you is summoned.

And you understand, maybe for the first time ever, how grand you are, because you discover that vulnerable doesn’t mean powerless, scared doesn’t mean lacking in beauty, and uncertainty doesn’t mean that you’re lost.

These realizations alone will set you on a journey that will take you far beyond what you used to think of as extraordinary.

There is always a bright side,
    The Universe

 

Reading this made me smile, because I remembered that my mental issues don’t define me. My journey is finding myself and it’s a work in progress. This blog has proved to be one of the best things for my personal growth, because I can share whatever I want and get it off my chest. I’m unashamedly really proud of myself and where I’m going with this blog. But it has also connected me with so many people; those who simply like a recipe or article I post, or those who also have their own stuff going on and know they’re not alone. I share intimate details of my life not to get attention, but so others can relate and maybe find their own inspiration for personal growth.

 

That’s not to say some of us aren’t sharing more than necessary, like every time we get a cold or go to the bathroom. And we shouldn’t be sharing information solely via the internet to connect with people, as human contact is still extremely important. But every time you see a post showing a friend on a fitness journey, a friend documenting their travels, a friend who just got married or a friend who’s having a hard time after dealing with a close death, it’s more likely about connection and growth than self-absorbency. I’ve been inspired numerous times by friends, and even strangers, who open their lives up to others, because they don’t let their fears hold them back. We’re going against the conservative taboos on unspoken topics by opening ourselves up, and I say it’s about time. This is the generation of sharing, and as long as we’re not harming others in the process, I think we can become better, more accepting people because of it.

 

Want to share something about yourself anonymously? Leave a comment below and start the discussion. 

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