But I need to stop looking people up…

However, related to my previous post, one of my resolutions is to stop looking up people on social media. I don’t use it a lot, but I might look up people every now and then. (Since I started posting regularly on Instagram, I started looking at people’s accounts, too.)

It’s more of a fascination, really. It’s actually a massive improvement from my previous viewing patterns. When I was in a bad place years ago, I would browse people’s social media accounts and feel like crap. I would become envious of their seemingly perfect lives. Fortunately, I’m moved on from that, and the envy has turned into fascination.

These are typically people I used to know — or was at least connected to in some way — years ago. I just find it crazy how wildly varied our paths have taken. I feel like it’s because I left the Philippines ten years ago and didn’t really keep up with people’s lives on social media. When I visit their accounts, years later, I have zero idea of what had been going on, and get shocked at the turns their lives had taken.

It’s crazy to think how we were all schoolchildren decades ago, and now we’re all leading different lives. It’s also quite jarring, whilst reading their posts, to realise that we now have different (and sometimes incompatible) mindsets. I cannot relate to my friends’ concerns about finding a yaya for their kids, dealing with househelp, navigating through Manila traffic, or reacting to Filipino political issues.

At the same time, they can’t really relate to my situation, not fully… I remember reading an acquaintance’s post — she has stayed in the Philippines all this time — talking about what it would be like to take a Masters degree overseas, living in one’s own apartment and “being totally independent.” And it struck me that she didn’t know what she was talking about, having never lived the experience. But it was interesting to consider how she’d projected that life to be. (Sometimes, I wonder what people think when they look at my Instagram account.)

But I need to stop. It can be fascinating finding out how people’s lives have turned out, but all things considered, it doesn’t really matter. What I’ve learned is to try to be more understanding of where other people are coming from, acknowledging that we’ve now been shaped by different experiences since leaving uni. I think that’s all I need to learn from this social media browsing.

So yeah, the stalking stops now. 😛

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