Snapchat is great. This is not an article bashing it or those wonderful 10 second moments. I personally couldn’t live without seeing my friends drunken nights and my own hilarious recaps of the day. I couldn’t imagine not knowing what Kylie Jenner might be up to or learning the meaning of life and “Keys to Success” with DJ Khaled. It’s the perfect way to not really leave a permanent trail like other social media platforms. And it’s just simply fun to use. That out the way:
Maybe that was a little too dramatic. Perhaps a small anecdote?
I have a friend. Let’s call her Snapping Susie. Snapping Susie loves Snapchat–addicted almost. Everywhere we go, Susie is snapping away, capturing (in her mind) exciting memories to share with all of her friends. The problem? Susie snaps everything. The leaves in trees: snapped. A stranger passing by with a subtly intriguing gait: snapped. A drink she just paid for at the bar: snapped. She also always captures her reactions to all of these things. It’s excessive and worst of all, Snapping Susie knows it’s excessive.
One drunken night, while I was admittedly creating my own ridiculous drunken SnapStory, I looked over to see Snapping Susie and the rest of our friends doing the same– basically ignoring each other. It hit me:
Are we too busy documenting our lives to actually enjoy it?
We hear it all the time. How we are slaves to our phones and zombies who only take pictures for Instagram, videos for Snapchat and only type to create a witty caption. It’s told to us repeatedly how we should be able to live free from our devices to create memories, saving them in our minds and not our devices. Well, easier said than done but the sentiment is spot on. I can’t help but think back to how Snapchat works. 10 seconds and the moment is over. 24 hours later (unless saved down), the moment vanishes forever. During the actual moment, those 10 seconds are so precious and likely mean something, yet we allow them to disappear. It’s like we are setting ourselves up on a stage to present this great play for social media that ultimately is smoke and mirrors.
We’re so busy creating memories for show that we forget to truly experience a moment–letting ourselves drown in it.
Experiences and memories are one of our best gifts in life. Looking over to see a friend more engaged in their phone than in your time together, although now normal, can still be very off putting. Back to Susie. I value Snapping Susie’s hilarious outlook on life and love when she’s enthralled and fascinated by whatever situation we find ourselves in. She has so much more to offer than the 10 seconds she’s allowing.
Hopefully Snapping Susie and I can collectively get it together.