“Our self is in constant fluctuation. If you’re constantly listening to what other people are saying and sharing on social media, you’re never understanding who you are. You’ve become a reflection of other people.” — Robert Greene

Social media and the internet has become the most significant double-edged sword of the 21st century.

You have experienced it’s powerful deleterious effects on your own mental state and find yourself in a place where ‘the self’ (who you are) sometimes gets muddled through the reflection of thoughts and opinions of the media on a screen.

You use all forms of media to help provoke internal dialogue, challenge previous held believes and educate on all things related to the human experience. But you have gotten to a point where you are trying to peel back the layers of yourself and find solitude, peace and space, and you can only find that if you quiet the external voices by stepping further away from media consumption.

Most of our diseases (physical and mental) are diseases of over-consumption. You have been in large phase of intellectual cerebral consumption that is currently affecting you’re understanding of yourself and your own mental well-being. Although on the other hand of the double edged sword it has also aided in dramatic self reflection, pro-activeness and betterment. It is the elixir and it is the poison because it’s how you interface and use a tool that determines it’s predominant effectiveness.

Social media acts like a mask that allows people to hide from themselves — hide who they really are. They don’t have to face the shadow’s of their soul and character because they can swim in a fabricated facade of enabling delusional people. But that’s also the beauty of it, you can be whoever you want to be and via that freedom maybe you can even help find yourself (whatever ‘finding yourself’ means). But more often than not social media exposes addictive fickle tendencies in an already fractured person who likely needs to sit alone by a river and just…listen.

Depending on how damaged you, are tools like social media can either repress authenticity or expose it. Embracing the many light and dark sides of your ‘Self’ is a gateway to learning who you really are, what you’re capable of and expressing that ‘Self’ with authenticity. When you get stuck in over-consumption the opinions, thoughts and influences of others get mixed and confused with who you are.

“When you’re not in touch with YOUR OWN tastes, desires, impulses, what makes you different, what makes you unique, you are alienated from the one basic reality — who you are.”

“If you’re constantly listening to what other people are saying and sharing on social media — if you’re plugged into the matrix continually and that’s you’re only reality then really what you’re doing is you’re never understanding who you are. What you see when you look in the mirror [then becomes] a reflection of all the opinions of other people, so you become a reflection of other people [which serves to] alienate yourself from yourself. Being alienated from yourself is a deeply depressing experience.”

“Living in the matrix world of social media and all the fantasies you don’t really have to confront yourself, you don’t have to deal with your own demons, weaknesses and flaws and consequently, you pay a terrible price. But the principle source of the problem is people are running away from themselves and on social media, that process is greatly accelerated.”

There is a great utility in stepping back and giving yourself some distance from the chaos of consumption. That space allows you the moments to discover the deepest darkest most beautiful corners of your mind and soul.

Ideas inspired by Robert Greene

Self reflective writings & book summaries on philosophy, psychology and human behaviour. youtube.com/emmanualalexander

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