Inspiration or Imitation?

Have you ever seen someone on Social Media wearing an outfit and then the next day (tried) to put on either the exact same or something similar too that outfit? I know that I have. Usually though, it’s the more affordable version of the outfit, because despite my best efforts I am unfortunately sadly not successful in a traditional sense. I buy my groceries at Superstore, Dollarama and I are tight and I think $40 for a shirt is outrageous, of course I’ll still buy it, because its cute and I’m easily manipulated, but I will wear the sh*t out of that shirt. I got a bit off track there, so I’m going to bring it back in. I have trouble differentiating what I am inspired by and what I am actually trying to imitate when it comes to social media. The definitions of the two are different but still seem to link to each other and that leads me to question why some people get so upset when you “imitate” them, after all isn’t it the highest form of flattery?

“im·i·tate: take or follow as a model.”*

I am a girl who does not understand her body type at all and I refuse to conform to the typical “are you a curvy, athletic or slim build?” and “how to dress for your body type”. Barf. To me, if you want to dress for your body type you put on whatever you feel confident in and you throw your middle finger to the people who don’t support you, because you don’t need them. However, for me, this becomes a problem when I see people wearing something on Social Media, so I decide “I’m going to get that outfit and wear it, it looks so good on them, it’ll look like that on me…” Then I put on the outfit and reality hits fast and hard. “Oh, wait, I have huge boobs and a tummy.. and I’m only 5’3…maybe I don’t look exactly like Candice Swanepoel.. Damn it!” So I change into something I’m more confident in, leggings and a t-shirt. The thing is, I take imitation too serious sometimes, imitation is not a bad thing but I forget that its more like the memes floating around lately: Me: “Can I copy your homework?” Social Media “Yeah but just switch it up a little”. That is the part I struggle with, I can switch it up to be something that its better suited for me and I then I’ll be more confident and not copying someone but more-so getting inspiration from someone.

“in·spi·ra·tion: the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.”*

I classify myself as a “creative” therefore the above really speaks to me and it is what I like to achieve. The feeling of being inspired by an idea, thought or person and then making something out of it that is your own. Social Media is a brilliant place to gather inspiration from, hell, I get all my workouts from there and I have to say, I check it about 20 times or more a day. With a tool that is so powerful and influential though, comes a downside, unrealistic expectations. People see transformation pictures and think that’ll be them, you see people going on vacation all the time and assume you can too, couples that are totally #goals are all over the place, it would be wrong to say that you can’t have all the above too, but you’re not shown the work that goes into those things. Instead of trying to imitate the above, you should be inspired from it. See that Transformation Tuesday and say, “Yes! Good for you! I am going to go the gym today” or “Wow, I bet they worked hard for that trip! I’ve always dreamt of going to Spain, I’m going to save $10 every pay cheque until I can”, you can even have the relationship if you’re open to it. Try saying, “I’m so happy for them and I am open to the idea of a healthy relationship too. I know it will take work and  time but I’m willing to put in the effort.” All of the above statements have something in common, you are recognizing their achievements as their own and clearly stating that it is you that needs to take action in your own life to create the life you’ve always wanted to live.

I dream of a day where we no longer want to live someone else’s life because we are all too busy loving our own. We’re too busy being grateful to the world and ourselves for creating it, that we forget to be jealous, we forget to put others down because they got where we wanted to be faster than us. Instead, we thank them for providing us the inspiration and we move on. That is what I’m working on, living and loving my life as my authentic self, I mean, isn’t that really what it’s all about?

Feel free to share some of your thoughts on this, do you think Social Media has too much power lately? Have you ever tried to imitate instead of be inspired by? Let me know!

xx your gal, AL.

 

*all definitions were taken directly from google.ca