Pinterest And The Crisis of Contentment

By Fin Sheridan

Ever just go on Pinterest for what you thought would be a quick look and 45 mins, you’re still there? If you’re one of the 176 million users, then you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you aren’t, let me just bring you up to speed. Pinterest is a content sharing service that allows members to “pin” images, videos and other objects to their pinboard. They say that they are “the world’s catalogue of ideas.”

Think of it like a digital scrapbook, filled with creativity and an endless list of subjects. Planning a wedding? Get on Pinterest. Want a tattoo? Pinterest. Choosing an outfit, baking a cake, looking for cool ideas for furniture under £20? Pinterest will serve you up a whole host of ideas and options.

“Rather than being glad with our reality, we get caught up in a fantasy – happiness will come when we have what we see on our screens.”

Pinterest is awesome – another benefit of living in the digital age. The catalogue is vast, the potential for creative and innovative ideas seemingly endless. However, looking at all these wonderful things that we could have, that would give us the dream home, the perfect outfit, the ideal life, can be toxic for our hearts.

The overload of the aspirational can leave us feeling discontent and dissatisfied with the life that we do have. Rather than being glad with our reality, we get caught up in a fantasy – happiness will come when we have what we see on our screens.

This isn’t a call to go and delete Pinterest or a rally against social media. These are good gifts and perfectly enjoyable when used in moderation. But next time you find yourself frantically “pinning”, just check yourself. Does this contribute to your level of contentment? Or does it put it in crisis?

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