Instagram in Real Life // Editing the Noise

Recently Micah and I were talking about having our Instagram feeds be more simple and creative.

Instead of whatever we were thinking or doing at the moment, we would be more mindful about keeping our feeds cohesive and give them an actual “look.” 

When you scroll through a feed that’s messy, do you get confused? Do you get agitated?

Sometimes I feel that way when I scroll through and take inventory of my life. 

Yes, I did relate Instagram to real life. 

What if my life was just as strategic as my Instagram feed? If I edited, and I cut out the things that were just busy and loud, would I gain clarity?

If you’re in design or creatively inclined, does your art reflect your mood and perhaps your overall life?

 

So now, I’d like to keep it tight. Editing and picking only the images I believe reflect me at the moment, and thus fit the theme of my feed.

And I’ll do the same for my life, spending time only on that which gives me clarity and taps into the roots of who I really am. 

On the Nature of Stereotypes

Los Angeles is a wondrous swirl of countless perspectives, ways of life, cultures and languages. Fashion choices and religion. Beach people and city people. The list goes on an on.

Photos taken at verve coffee in downtown los angeles

I’ve noticed that a lot of things everyone believes about themselves and others could be classified as a stereotype.

Fulfilling the stereotype by holding stereotypical views.

A real chicken or the egg situation.

Older People

LA People

Millennials

Politicians

Do you have certain ideas that come to mind when you hear each of those words? How may people have you seen fulfill those ideas versus how many of “those” types of people are there actually in the world? Chances are, in your experience, one “rotten apple” can “spoil the bunch.” Leading to perfecting your Tina Fey eyeroll.  

But do their actions justify the classification? Or are your views arising from breakdown of understanding one another?

I talk a bit occasionally about building cultural bridges. Could our perceived ideas of people just come from culture clash? A sheer dislike of another culture just because they’re different from our own?

I think there are strings that tie humanity together, and we snip them with our perceived realities of who “that type of person really is.”

What if we got outside our party lines? What if we realized that the “problem” really wasn’t that particular group or ethnicity…it’s really us. And our reactions to things that are different from ourselves?

 What if we didn’t re-act, and just acted like ourselves.

Accepting differences as learning lessons, as little blessings in time where we can experience life through someone else’s eyes and maybe even learn something new about ourselves. 

Time is Not Money

When I first had the realization that Americans talk about time in the same ways they talk about money, my brain literally powered down like a robot with its cord accidentally pulled out.

“Life is long” says my husband Micah. “Life is short” says me.

I had never really begun to think about my relationship with time until recently. After I got married I realized that I would have some time on earth with my husband and then we would die.

Naturally, I freaked out and decided to jam as many experiences I could into my weeks. I signed us up for a website that suggests fun dates around the area – and went on one at least once a week. Always wanted to be out and about in LA discovering new things. Always wanted to be somewhere new and planned many-a-weekend & longer-term trips. 

The result? I am exhausted.

However to me, thinking about time is stressful. There is never enough time in the day that I’d like there to be. I realize also that how I *ahem “spend” my time directly correlates with what I’m passionate about.

I am the master of my time, yet I feel like time is mastering me.

It took me a minute to realize this, but I am passionate about the relationship I have with my husband. And I wasn’t utilizing my time with him. Just him. Just us.

In American culture, we say “time is money,” but in reality “time is priceless.”

If we instead looked to breaking the construct of time that we have created, even just for a moment or a weekend (i.e. we ate when we were hungry, we let the day come to us), we would replace the value of time with how much we value the people in our lives.

When I worked on Skid RowI listened to so many stories. People would come into my office, plop down in the chair next to my desk and start talking. Instead of getting frustrated (sometimes I did), I would just spin my chair towards them and listen.

The concept of time slipped into the background when people opened up and shared their lives. In those moments, they were sharing such a deep piece of themselves. The emails could wait. The voicemails could wait. And you know what? Nobody died. The world didn’t stop turning. If anything, our lives were enriched by one another’s at that moment.

Because for once, I didn’t care about time as a currency exchange. I cared about the person, and let the dialogue lead us to where we needed to go.

And we got there, not by watching the clock, but by letting it spin around unnoticed on the wall behind us as we ran and danced around the stories in our minds. 

Time is not money, it is priceless. Enjoy your holiday season and ignore the hands of time.