If you’ve perused the internet recently, you may have heard the latest “buzz” that is shaking the interwebs.
Instagram will be hiding the “likes” on photos.
Yes, you read that correctly.
Right now, every photo on Instagram shows a tally of how many people “liked” a photo. Jennifer Aniston, for example, gets literally millions of likes per photo…where as your girl here, I’m lucky if I break 1,000.
But for better or for worse, there has always been a numerical value attached to people’s posts, indicating how “successful” of a photo it is.
And starting soon, Instagram is doing away with that feature.
People will still be able to like it, but there will no longer be a numerical tally keeping score publicly.
And it’s safe to say, the influencer community is quite literally shaking in their over-the-knee fashion boots.
But I’ll let you in on a little secret — I think this is a great idea.
Sure, it could either be the greatest thing ever to happen to Instagram, OR the catalyst to its demise, only time will tell. But for the sake of mental health at large, I think this is a giant step in the right direction.
Ever since communities existed, “popularity” has always been a thing. An omnipresent referee that can cause, especially young people, tremendous stress and anxiety.
Pressure to fit in, to be well “liked” — both in person, and on social media — we’re getting so wrapped up in that fickle and fleeting facade of worth. And it’s slowing destroying our sense of self-worth.
We’ve forgotten where our true value lies.
During my recovery from anorexia, this particular issue was one that was not only incredibly difficult to overcome, but also the lynchpin for my true healing: I had to find my worth and value outside of anything externally dictated. I had to find my true source of worth.
It wasn’t the number on the scale. It wasn’t the size of my jeans, or the number of calories I did or didn’t eat that day.
It wasn’t in how I looked, or what I achieved, or any accolades I may have had.
No. My worth came from the fact that I was created by God – period. End of sentence. Learning this truth – which seems so incredibly elementary now – first brought me to my absolute break point, and then to the greatest freedom I could have ever imagined.
To the world, “good enough” is never good enough. The bar will always be raised higher and higher. And thanks to photoshop, there will always be a new, more unattainable level of perfection that that world demands.
From the way we look, to our job position, to the number of friends we have, the car we drive, — heck — even the number of instagram “likes” we collect.
They assign “value” and “worth” but the fact of the matter is that those indicators are coming from a hollow, empty space.
Their way of assigning value empties the person. It is a reduction of the person to a numerical, or measurable entity.
When we find our worth in Christ, it does just the opposite: it fills us up.
It causes our souls to overflow with the love and grace that only He can provide.
The fact of the matter is that the number of “likes” one receives can never, ever capture the magnitude of worth and value we have in God’s eyes. We cannot put a numerical value on that because it is infinite. It cannot be measured. Nor are our earthly brains even capable of conceptualizing the Father’s love for us.
But it certainly was able to be demonstrated: when Jesus embraced the cross.
That is the ultimate evidence of our worth, and value and dignity. That is the truth that set my free from my anorexia. That helped me embrace life, and accept and love myself: because He loved me first. He loved me so immensely that He poured Himself out for me.
And if He could do that – so could I.
There are no “likes” that could ever communicate that value we hold as His children.
So you know what? Yeah – bring on this “like-free” era of Instagram.
It’s time we start remembering just what it is that truly gives us our value in this life.
What do YOU think about Instagram’s decision to get rid of “likes?”
Also: You can find me on Instagram @beauty.beyond.bones
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
A big thank you to my foundational sponsor, BetterHelp Online Therapy. I cannot begin to express how beneficial therapy was for my recovery from anorexia. Speak with an online therapist. Or check out content about eating disorders from BetterHelp.
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