I want you to know where this post is coming from…

A conversation with friends. A belief that social media can be used for good, but has its traps as well. An acknowledgment that normal is a relative, subjective term. A hope to encourage & not to belittle.

So now that that’s out of the way, here’s the main point of this entire post…

We live in a social media world & many feel a pressure to compete in it…but maybe there’s an alternative.

What are people competing over? People are competing to see who has the most interesting, exotic life. Who has done the most extravagant thing lately. People want to know if they can get the most likes on Instagram, or generate the most discussion on Facebook (if they still use it…). People are competing to create a life that looks very exciting.

But here’s the issue with that kind of competition. Most of us live normal lives. We go to work or go to school. We spend time watching Netflix, going to Chick Fil A, and occasionally trying to exercise. We hang out with friends & make sure to keep in touch with our families. Sure we can take a cool picture of the sunset when the clouds look just right & pick the perfect filter. But on the whole…most of us live ordinary lives.

But is that such a bad thing? Is it terrible to say that you live an ordinary life? I don’t think so. In fact, I think that we need to embrace the normal life.

We need to come to a point in our lives where we find joy even in the mundane. There is real value in being a good worker or a diligent student. There is real delight in a meal spent at Qdoba (or whatever place you usually go) discussing random whatnots with friends. There is real beauty in loving your family by doing the dishes. And there are a billion other normal scenarios that you can think of that ultimately contribute towards a meaningful life. So…stop fighting it…be normal.

So where do we go from here?

1. Continue to use social media.

If you find yourself being pressured by the competition of social media & can’t find a way out…then maybe you need to take a break. But I think there’s a way to celebrate the normal life while enjoying social media. Here’s what I’m thinking, start using #normallifeisgood (that’s hashtag normal life is good) to celebrate the normal parts of life. I’m going to incorporate it into my social media writings & I encourage you to use it as well so we can see what normal looks like for one another!

2. Take advantage of the blessing of social media: keep up with what’s happening!

It is great to stay up to date with what your friends & family are doing/accomplishing/working towards/etc. For me, that means looking at lots of pictures of friends & their little ones…I now look at more pictures of babies in one week than I did through the first twenty years of my life combined. That may be an exaggeration, but probably not by much. You can know what your friends & family have been doing. It is no doubt a huge blessing to be able to stay in touch so easily these days!

3. Be excited when something outside the norm happens for a friend!

Don’t be the person that takes this whole idea of embracing normal to the extreme. Seriously, don’t be that person. If your friend goes on a hiking trip and takes a beautiful picture, they should post it! They just hiked & deserve to share this extraordinary moment with the world. If your friend gets to meet a former president and take a picture with him, they should post it! Be excited for them! If your friend gets engaged or has a baby, they should post it! Big moments in life should be celebrated by all. Alright, hopefully you get the point…don’t ruin this for us by being that person!

So there you have it: there’s a lot more that can be said on the subject, so I would love to hear your thoughts! Also, remember to start using the hashtag so we can see what normal looks like in your life: #normallifeisgood