The Highlight Reel Is Not Real

With the new release of my book and some potentially progressive collaborations, I've been receiving an onslaught of congratulations and statements of reverence. So many people come to me saying how they wish they were in "my position", or one similar, I often get the "I want to be like you when I grow up" joke and a bunch of other seemingly supportive words that points to this idealistic perception of where people perceive I am in life. I often respond, "No one's highlight reel is real." I've been having this conversation so much that I felt it was necessary to write about it. 

First, social media is a curated collection of moments in people's life. In other words, you see what they allow you to see. They show what the few seconds of their days or months that make their life seem enticing. Do not get caught up in glimpses, we're all showing segments of our days which are seconds in a pool of hours. For some, those seconds might be the best time they have throughout that day. Speaking for myself specifically I don't ever show the times of doubt, anguish, frustration, laziness, distractions, stagnation, distance, numbness, confusion, self-inflicted chaos, stress, self-coping lust and countless other shortcomings that happen all within a day. It's very easy to look at the capture of accomplishment without any context and feel - "that person has it figured out." I'm here to tell you, that is not nearly the case.

This life thing is a process for us all and it didn't come with a blueprint on how to master it. There are countless people I speak to regularly that I feel are inspirations to the direction I'd like to go in life. Feelings of inadequacy are not reserved for the unaccomplished. I'll share this very honest moment with you -

Up until the LITERAL public release of my book, Fragmented Reality, I battled with a lack of confidence that this work was even worthy of releasing. I thought about all the ways it could and probably would fail. I felt like the work was done and maybe even old so releasing it would be a waste. I told myself, I live in a world that is reading less and less so I wouldn't probably be able to sell many copies. I just felt it wasn't worth the effort. 

When I finally released the project I posted how excited I was, and as true as that might have been a lot of that excitement was a mixture of nervousness and uncertainty. To everyone else, it was seen as a milestone. While that is true, it's a milestone to overcoming the struggles of whether or not something is possible. 

No one knows your process and how long it has taken you, nor how much it has taken from you. NO ONE. The only way a person has an inkling is if they are present and you allow them in. There are so many times when you can get lost going through your social media for hours looking over countless accounts and comparing their highlight reel to your reality and begin to feel "behind" in your process but remember you could be much further than what they are showing you of their own life. We are humans. That means we have an array of emotions and experiences, we are complex and evolving. Do not allow the temporary delay you from your long term. Use the social media highlight reels of others as inspiration to continue your own process. 

We live in an age where everyone is a brand and all their digital accounts are their marketing platforms, so think of it like this - I call it the "Selfie Reality" people often take countless selfies to give you one good picture. You don't get to see all the discarded pictures that lead to that heavily filtered "remastered" piece with all the likes. Such is life. Everyone is trying to make it ahead and for many, their marketing platform serves as a snapshot of what they intend their life to be. Be at ease we're all swimming upstream.