Living in a Pinterest Perfect World

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Last night as I scoured the internet in search of a tutorial to tie the perfect bow for a project I was working on, I was I was hit by a sudden sense of enlightenment…and it wasn’t one of bow tying knowledge.  It was a keen understanding of what it means to live in a Pinterest perfect world.

Have you ever considered that the place of inspiration boards gone wild; the largest cookbook known to man; the place that I can plan a wedding to a man I’ve not yet met, may be more detrimental than we think?

Living in a Pinterest world has made me realize just how much focus we put on perfection.

Think about the last few pins you’ve posted to your many pinboards.

Let me guess… weightloss tips or the ultimate workout guide.  A picture of an immaculate kitchen with granite counter tops and the latest high end appliances.  And last but not least, a recipe for the most scrumptious looking dessert you’ve ever laid eyes on (well at least until you hit refresh).

Was I close?

Have you tried those weightloss or workout tips?  Can your pocketbook afford that kitchen?  How about that recipe, have you attempted it yet?

I’m betting not.  And you know why?  Our lives are just not that perfect.

I love Pinterest as much as anyone else (working my way to 5k pins at-the-mo), though I’ve come to realize that the mindless hours spent pinning away is another reason we feel alienated from relationships (friends, family or otherwise).

It’s a reason why we find ourselves comparing our lives to those of our co-workers or celebrities on TV.  It’s a reason why we end up feeling as though we don’t measure up, our lives are cut short of glory, and that our lives are somehow inadequate compared to others.

In all honesty, most of our lives don’t look like the pictures you see on Pinterest. And you can thank Photoshop and PicMonkey filters for that.  Our lives are not sparkly, with fun colored confetti spread on the table top surrounding a perfectly constructed multi-layer rainbow cake.

Our lives look more like the breakfast bar, misshapen and deformed from living in the bottom of our purse; eaten as we make a mad dash to work, to drop off the kids, or a full-out sprint through the grocery store.

And. that. is. okay!

Life can be messy.  Life can be downright cray-cray.  I know mine is!

Let’s stop to think about what life would be like if we lived inside of those pictures we continue to pin:

  • We’d have the most fashionable wardrobe.
  • We’d have a spotless home.
  • Our families would have perfect, smooth, taned and toned bodies.
  • Our hair would look like we just stepped out of the salon at every moment of the day.
  • And our children would have the coolest playground in our well manicured backyard.

Sounds glorious, right?  Ha!  But what about those real life moments:

  • What about those moments when the milk spills all over the table?
  • What about our favorite sweater that we’ve owned since college that cannot be found on a single shelf but your own?
  • What about the stretch marks from child bearing and the scars from the time you decided to go for an adventure?
  • What about the lingering scent of your favorite shampoo on your wet head as you rush to clean up the house before company arrives?
  • What about the fort made out of blankets and the smudgy fingerprints left on doors, evidence that fun was had in the simplest of ways?

Now that’s a life worth living; a world without Pinterest perfect expectations!

Do you struggle with feelings of inadequacy when browsing Pinterest or other social media sites?

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  1. Pinterest has just taken what used to be confined to magazines and made it so much more easily accessible. Sometimes it’s nice to escape from that spilled milk and the messy lawn and the imperfections to see a little bit of beauty and celebrate someone else’s talents. I just try to tie a rope around my waist so I don’t get sucked into it and can escape back to the imperfect, but wonderful reality, I love 🙂

    1. Vanessa – spot on, a mental vacation from relatity is definitely a God-send sometimes and for that Pinterest is a very cheap alternative to therapy! You are also on point that we need to be careful not to get sucked in as many people do (myself included) into thinking that because the pictures are so pretty, that it is what life is “supposed” to look like. Thanks so much for stopping by! Have a blessed Memorial Day weekend! 🙂

  2. Love this! I caught myself experimenting with PicMonkey this morning to ‘improve’ a photo of me. I edited and edited until every wrinkle, blemish, out of place hair were erased. Then, as I compared it to the original, I thought “this is crazy”! These “flaws” are who I am – the result of good years lived, mothering two children and being comfortable with me. So, I tossed out the doctored picture and published the real one. We need to be real more often! Thanks for this!!

    1. Kathryn, I’ve done the exact same thing! I’m proud of you for making the choice to show the REAL you, which I’m sure is even more beautiful than the “airbrushed” version! Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts!

  3. As a recovered perfectionist, I’m of the mind that the better things look on the outside the messier they are on the inside. That goes for people too. I used to look movie star perfect all the time and I was actually a self-loathing alcoholic. As I’ve healed and recovered, everything around me including my appearance has gotten messier while inside I am becoming whole – thanks to Christ of course.

    1. Laura, wow! Your testimony is such a powerful example of how Christ can take our messiness and turn it into something so incredibly beautiful, that sometimes we don’t recognize ourselves in comparison to our former ways! Many thanks for sharing your testimony and beautiful new outlook! Be blessed.

  4. “Our lives look more like the breakfast bar, misshapen and deformed from living in the bottom of our purse; eaten as we make a mad dash to work, to drop off the kids, or a full-out sprint through the grocery store.” Yes! This is so true! And sometimes things come together and the house and kid run in perfect order for 24 hrs. 🙂 What great thoughts on this subject we are all thinking and processing! Thank you for linking up on Inspire Me Monday this week!

    1. Sarah, I’m so glad you were able to take away something from this message. It sure is nice when things come together, but we need to remember to be thankful no matter the circumstance or state of order the house is in! 🙂 Thank you so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment! Many blessings!

  5. Hi Bree,
    I found your site through A Harvest of Blessing. I love Pinterest and can spend hours on there – I even have my own wedding board with no groom in sight lol.
    I have all of the boards you mentioned but don’t find myself comparing. While I may not get that marble kitchen countertop, I can get some ideas from the pics that would not normally come naturally. Things like decorating (or that wedding planning) are so big in my mind, they become super overwhelming, which is probably why most of my walls are bare.
    I agree that it can be detrimental if we allow it to be just like any other social media outlet. But I love seeing what other people share and how creative people are even if I’ll never get to that level. Some of it is funny, some awe-inspiring but rather than become envious, I appreciate what is out there like I would if I were window-shopping.
    We do need to keep our hearts in check that we aspire for those real life moments, then the cookie-cutter perfect moments. This is great for spotlighting that we can’t forget our imperfections because they are what keep our feet grounded in reality!

    1. Liv, I love your idea of thinking of Pinterest as another method of window shopping! I too enjoy seeing what is out there, but I sometimes need that reality check and reminder that it’s okay that my life doesn’t look like these picture perfect moments often pinned or shared on other sites. I’m glad to know that you are capturing the best out of this resource and not allowing the overwhelming nature of comparison to take hold! Thank you so much for connecting!

    1. Thank you so much for stopping by, Elizabeth! I’ll be sure to sure to swing over to your site as well. I appreciate you taking the time to comment and hope you’ll stop back again real soon!

  6. No you weren’t close on my latest pins…lol. Put I do think social media as whole has us focusing a lot on putting our best selves out their. And Pinterest can have us pinning things we will probably never really get around to trying.

    1. Oh no, I was wrong! Let me try again… haha! You’re so right though, Wanda, unfortunately we are now focusing on always picking the best picture out of the bunch to share instead of the ones with fly away hair, or a crooked smile, which are the kind of pictures reflect who we truly are, imperfect beings made beautiful through Christ.

  7. I will admit I’ve only been using Pinterest for about 6 months and really don’t browse other people’s boards. I just use it to organize my ideas I find around the web while reading blogs. So no troubles with Pinterest in this area. But Facebook is another story!! It’s hard to look at everyone’s perfect life when you are home by yourself with the kids a lot. I deactivated my account for a bit, and that helped me realize just how much I was on it without realizing it!

    1. Hi Jennifer – thanks for sharing! Pinterest is just one way that we’re using social media to compare our lives to that of others and Facebook is definitely another big contender! It is pretty crazy how much time we devote to these confidence-sucking platforms, isn’t it? As long as we remember to remain humble, or as one other commenter said, a rope tied about our waist so we don’t get sucked in, I think they can be positive places for networking or meeting people you never would have connected with otherwise. Good for you for taking the step to fast from what you knew to be causing hard feelings. May I be so brave to do the same! Thanks for stopping by!

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