Rebekah Peters is a sophomore at Corban this year.

Rebekah Peters is a sophomore at Corban this year.

But I’m feeling like my worth is found in the number of likes on my Instagram. When I post on Facebook, I sit and wait for that one person to “like” my status. Typically, that doesn’t happen. And when it doesn’t, I feel like I’m inadequate.

How vain.

Is my success really measured by a number of likes?

Before you think I am going to bash social media and its place in society, I want to make it clear that I’m not about to.

Think about the multiple Corban groups on Facebook. Other than chapel, where else do hundreds of Corbanites gather on a regular basis? It is a unique way for our student body to have common experiences every day.

But I know for myself, I place far too much stock in the opinions of others. Especially when I’m basing one’s opinion of me from the sole fact that they liked my post.

While I want to caution us about the slippery slope of placing our self-worth in people liking our statuses and photos, I would like to applaud the internet for providing a community that could not exist without social media.

A prime example is my nephew, Dash. He’s a 3-year-old with an Instagram. If that’s not crazy enough, he’s a dog. His mom, who is my sister, runs his account with him because his paws have a hard time navigating the touch screen.

Some evenings after a long day at work Beth, my sister, sits on the couch with her dog, iPad and Netflix where she relaxes and likes the photos of other dogs. Over time he has gained over one thousand followers!

Does he collect followers because he needs affirmation? Of course not. He’s a dog. But there is a large following of dogs. Most all of his followers are other dogs. It’s a dog-follow-dog world out there.

Instagram and Facebook are home to communities for all people, and dogs, apparently.

While I like to poke fun at my sister and her dog’s ridiculous Instagram habits, Beth has taught me a lot about what social media’s place should be in our lives.

Last year when her iPhone broke, she reverted back to a “dumb” phone. It is okay to not have Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Trivia Crack constantly bombarding us with notifications and distracting us from the people we are with in “real life.” She challenged me one time with the question, “Are we doing fun things so that we can take a photo and look cool? Or are we doing fun things for the sake of being adventurous and enjoying life?”

Beth also sent me a quote by an unknown author on Pinterest which has caused me to think a lot about this topic.

“The number of followers you have does not make you any better than anyone else. Hitler had millions, Jesus had 12.”

If my life is focused more on building relationships and less on gaining followers and getting likes, I can’t imagine how much more joyful life would be.

But I don’t know about you.