The Blog

Smoke and Mirrors - Will the Real Slim Shady Please Stand Up?

Remember in this life there is only one of you, so comparisons are pointless. You are you. Full Stop. And remembering when looking at anything on line, on TV or in magazines, just remind yourself this is not reality unless of course they say #nofilter......

Last week a leading mobile phone company launched their new upgraded smart phone with enhanced features that will make everyone's life be more mobile and allow us to really work from anywhere. One of the key features was its camera, it was automatically set on an enhanced filtered setting that blends the skin, ensures sparkly eyes and all the while allows us all look like we have the skin of a 12 year, even after 30 years of living.

Reality and real life is slowing slipping from society, everything now is either enhanced, scripted or photo shopped. No more so than in the world of health and fitness. There has been a movement towards getting people engaged with their health, which is positive. I have just left an event where 1,300 athletes put themselves through it over sea, on the bike and pounding the roads. Nothing was more real than watching these sports people cross that finish line throughout Sunday morning. This was real and this was real life. No filter required.

Seeing as social media plays such a role in the majority of our lives, its where we get our news, the gossip and for some inspiration, I feel it should come with viewership side note. Social media is probably one of the easiest ways to orchestrate or to portray yourself as you yourself wish, there is no policing and there is no one there to say whether this is a reality or just your reality. It gives a platform to everyone to express themselves, their passions, their thoughts or just a place to showcase how cute your dog is. Social media can be serious, light hearted and can be just that social.

Enhancing your own reality, can however be a dangerous thing to do for your own mindset. Take always filtering and monitoring all your on line content. Does this invariable lead you to have an enhanced sense of self or worse again a lowered sense of self? Is your unfiltered face, body and life simply not enough?

I give alot of talks to young teenage girls and one common thread is their on line behaviour. They love to look but not really post. They love to look at other peers and of course celebrities they admire for one reason and another. End result is always the same, they envy the lifestyles that are portrayed of theirs on line, which they all said leaves them "feeling that their lives are shit or not as good as what is on line" Wow when we hear or read this, you have to ask yourself, social media is it causing more harm than good?

Just look at social media photos- how many times is that shit taken and retaken before it ends up on that profile. I have asked and people have answered up to 45 times. Who has time for that? But you see the perception of looking the 'right' way will far outweigh the damaging time being spent on getting that shot. Look I know we all want to look our best, I mean who wants to post a pic when you are looking like Johnny 5 chins and there is that squint in your eye that makes you look like a 85 year old woman, worse for wear! I am just concerned we are losing sight of our true ourselves in the quest for filtered and angled perfection.

Online dating has never been as popular and I have heard horror stories of people who have gone on that date and literally said they were looking at Denzel Washington on line and in reality in walked Ryan Tubridy. Scary.

Angled shot number one:

Knowing how to be photographed is a skill, along with knowing how to take a good photo. Angles and light are everything. I document my training life on line and there is focus on my body in these shots. I am however just not interested in posting progression for my body that is not made by hard graft or dedication to my training. I can filter my body, face and abs any day of the week, but in reality if they are not really there, then what am I doing it for, likes? If so then can you please tell me what a like on line really means or is worth to me as a person living in the real world?

I know if I shoot from a height I look tiny, I know if I shoot in a slighted darkened room, the illusion of my body will look very defined and if I angle my body with almost a back and neck dislocation my body will look pretty good. To prove this I shot myself this way, I almost dislocated my neck at one point and brought in my arm pit into the mix. I also just took a photo of myself, standing normally and in real time with no filters because that is me and I like to always keep it real.

Just a casual shot:

I am you see vested in my health, I train my body for mobility, for strength, to ensure I stay in the best health I can possibly be in for as long as I can. I also train to give my body purpose, to show myself what I can do and achieve and to give my mind the feeling of achievements. I train for endorphins and I train because I love it. A side affect of all this training has been that I am in good physical shape and finally after years of judging myself and not feeling adequate in my body, I now do.

Such a natural pose!:

Remember in this life there is only one of you, so comparisons are pointless. You are you. Full Stop. And remembering when looking at anything on line, on TV or in magazines, just remind yourself this is not reality unless of course they say #nofilter......

Just standing normally no angle, no filter no nada: