I talk all about the most toxic trends on the internet right now, and shed some light on the unrealistic expectations behind them.
1. TikTok’s ‘That Girl’ has to be at the top of my list. The ‘That Girl’ aesthetic is disguised as healthy living and being the best version of yourself, when really, it’s riddled with toxic, unrealistic expectations for women. That Girl demands you give 100% of yourself everyday, and that if you don’t, you’re not good enough. Simple as that. I see so many influencers on TikTok who (probably unbeknownst to them) are promoting a ‘lifestyle’ that looks healthy and inclusive, but is really just unrealistic and, on the other side of the camera, not all that glamorous.
2. Glorifying Burnout. This kind of goes hand-in-hand with the ‘That Girl’ trend, but it’s a bit more focused on eradicating the 9-5 and pushing everyone to have a side hustle or otherwise working themselves into the ground. Not everyone is capable of having a side hustle, and some people simply just don’t want one. The romanticising of burnout makes the point that if you’re not constantly tired, constantly pursuing another level, or living a slow life; you’re simply not doing enough. This has to be one of the most toxic ‘trends’ to date.
3. Instagram Life. Of course we all want to show our best selves, but when looking at someone’s Instagram instantly makes you feel envious, or suddenly sad about your own life when you thought you were perfectly happy, it becomes toxic. I’m not saying that we can’t share the best things that happen to us, but when your Instagram is all about showcasing your so-called perfect life and making others feel bad, it’s time to take a step back. This responsibility not only rests with the person sharing their content, but the viewers, too. Know your limits and what is going to motivate and fuel you, versus what is going to make you feel unworthy.
4. Making mental illness an aesthetic. Don’t glorify mental illness; full stop. You’re not a little bit ‘OCD’ or ‘ADHD’. Don’t chuck these words around so carelessly. You’ll offend the wrong person one day.
5. The “I travel and don’t work but I’m still rich” trend. We get it; you’re somehow able to travel the country in your decked-out van while maintaining a good cash flow without working. Good for you! Don’t make this an aesthetic and don’t give others false hope that they too can obtain such a lifestyle when, clearly, many cannot. And you know what? There is absolutely nothing wrong with working the 9-5 grind. In fact, it’s what past generations have done for years and years and years. Why do we suddenly deserve not to work and earn a wealthy income? Why does this generation believe that they can get everything for nothing? This trend promotes pure laziness!
At the end of the day, it's up to you how you would like to live your life; but I beg you, please do not subscribe to these ridiculous trends and feel let-down or disappointed when they don't work out for you. Know yourself, your limits and your reality; and remember that just because it looks good, doesn't mean it is good.