Fearne Cotton is known for her honest, fuss-free social Instagram posts, depicting the day-to-day realities of parenting, insomnia, anxiety, and a whole host of other very normal states.
Keen to show the 'imperfect' side of life on her account - amongst a barrage of unrealistic, filtered snaps - the 39 year-old mum-of-two (and step-mum to two teenagers) can be seen regularly posting pictures of herself after a long night of no sleep, and has now taken to the social media site to vent about the importance of concentrating less on posting flawless photos to Instagram and instead focusing more on the story behind them.
Revealing that although she's been feeling particularly agitated this week - due to a distinct loss of control over the very real effects the coronavirus pandemic is having on people around her - the Happy Place podcaster realised that her social media use is one area she actually does have control over.
Taking to her Instagram account with a lengthy post this week, Cotton opened up a discussion around why we all feel the need to post picture-perfect selfies of the 'peachiest arse' and 'poutiest lips', and that we will never reach this mythical 'mental utopia' by trying to look like these unattainable pictures, which are really just a 'contrived snapshot in time.'
Explaining that - despite loving how 'connective, dynamic' and 'educational' the platform can be - she's 'frustrated,' as a mother of two girls, to see these these superficial photos constantly posted, with heavy emphasis on 'surface stuff.'
'I am constantly bamboozled when it comes to certain areas of the Instagram world,' Cotton started the post. 'Some of the most influential people on here purely showcase picture perfect selfies, designer clothes and a certain lifestyle.
'First up, if that’s what floats their boat fine, this is not an attack from me but where I feel I can help out is to start a conversation about how that information is processed by our human brain.
'Unfortunately these sorts of images lead to most of us believing, even if on a subterranean level, that if we have the poutiest lips, the most perfect hair, the peachiest arse, then we will reach some sort of mental utopia.
'These photos offer an empty promise. They’re a contrived snapshot in time with no depth. Pretty? Sure! But helpful to us individually? I doubt it. Why do we value the surface so much more than the story?'
Cotton, who released her book Happy: Finding Joy in Every Day and Letting Go of Perfect back in 2017, then went on to highlight several accounts she believes are worth following which make her feel happy and 'champion courage and welcome conversation.'
'Follow people that make you happy. I can give you some suggestions of people I believe should have the biggest followings on here… @samantharenke @henryfraser0 @anniejprice @howtoglitteraturd to name just a few. People who champion courage and joy and welcome conversation.
'As I’ve said this is not an attack on anyone, merely a chance to look at what makes us feel good and what we are happy for the next generation to be influenced by.
'Another option is to put your phone down and get in nature. I feel so happy when I’m outside, much better than I would spending an hour scrolling through photos of smooth foreheads, shiny bums and contoured cheeks.'
Finishing the caption by admitting she herself doesn't use Instagram perfectly, but encouraging her followers to continue the conversation and 'work out how we can put more emphasis on the story behind the photo.'
We couldn't have said it better ourselves!
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