Updated: Sep 13, 2019
In 'Hey, Internet: Stop Trying To Inspire Me', Jamie Varon expresses how tired she is of people trying to inspire her to have a better, bigger, happier life.
She notes that there's a monumental wall of stuff out there which attempts to make us feel inspired, but ends up leaving us feeling inadequate and ashamed.
You may have heard some of this stuff in your travels around the web and beyond.
Life is an adventure! Happiness is a choice!
Jamie asserts that while sounding well-meaning, positivity slogans and inspiring quotes and mantras can make us feel ashamed that we can't be more positive, happier, better, stronger. Their meanings dry up the moment life happens.
Jamie says that rather than surrounding ourselves with cheap, easy, flowery inspiration, it's time to embrace realness, community, and wanting to feel understood and heard.
"Let me exist. Let me fumble. Let me find the patch of light in the long tunnel of darkness. Let me figure out some shit on my own" she opines.
In a world that slings 'how to be a better person' mantras our way every minute of every day, and spews forth endless 'positivity slogans and 'lists to inspire greatness in you' it's refreshing to read some honesty amongst the BS.
And that whole 'happiness is a choice' thing. No it's not. Its hard work and it can be fleeting. It's ok to not feel happy every single moment. It's human. Note to self: you don’t need to fix yourself if you’re not smiling every moment of the day. Life isn't a pink fluffy cupcake.
We don't ALWAYS have to strive for perfection, no matter how many times it's drilled into us by social media and in everyday discourse.
We shouldn't feel compelled to pine over pinterest or instagram and wish that some stranger's perfectly curated life was ours. No no no. Your experience, YOURS, alone, defines you. Good times, bad times and everything in between.
Life isn't an infomercial for bubblegum. It's bumpy sometimes; scary, complex, weird, and often it's just plain dull. We shouldn't feel disenfranchised from feeling every nuance that life has to offer just because social media tells us that we should 'look on the bright side' and 'strive for greatness'.
As Jamie says "I’d rather see people fucking up than trying to act as if they never do."
Of course, there is nothing wrong with positivity. Looking at things from a 'glass half full' kinda vibe is often a good thing, if it is felt honestly and authentically - and not forced upon us by someone else as a prescription for how to be, all the time. If we feel that we have to be positive all the time and fail at doing so, it only serves to negate our real experience and make us feel like failures.
In the authors words, 'less fake inspiration and more realness.'
Give me more of that.