Not Always What It Seems

Hey friends!

How’s your week going?

Mine has gone swimmingly thus far-can’t complain too much here! I also had a nice chat with one of my best friends yesterday, so that’s made the week beginning on a really nice note. :)

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Not Always What it Seems

As a blogger (it still seems weird to me to say that’s what I am/do!), and blog reader, I feel it’s my duty to remind us all of a few things. And I do this because, once again, I am human & fall into comparison & judgement traps too. Maybe not as deep or as often as I used to, but I STILL do.

And thus it comes to the term ‘healthy living’ bloggers….. healthy living is obviously a huge term in and of itself (and is really hard to actually define, because healthy looks different to people), so simply coining the phrase leads to ambiguity, unmet expectations, confusion, and well, the ability to almost disguise one’s behavior as healthy. See the problem already?

Some like the ambiguity & disguise their unhealthy behaviors on purpose, others do not. And some might not realize their behaviors are a bit disordered or unhealthy. To each his/her own (but I get sad when I read blogs where it seems the writer is hurting). We’re all human!

And that is why I’m simply calling us ALL out to be careful with HOW we read and view blogs & pictures. There is NOTHING wrong, innately, with blogs or pictures of food or fitness (hello! I take them too!), but it can be somewhat dangerous/trigging/upsetting/confusing/frustrating to each of us if we automatically assume that he/she eats less/more than we do or exercises more/less/harder/easier than we do, etc.

See my point?

Here are a few examples from me….

Exhibit A

IMG_4848

I shared this picture in yesterday’s post. I ate this on Friday for dinner. I ate all of this, yes, and MORE.

But did I share the rest of the food as a picture with you? Nope. Why? Because I am utterly and completely lazy when it comes to food photography. I really am! Hence no cutesy backdrops, perfect lighting, and awesome setups. Sorry, it’s just not my thing.

I do not intentionally want to mislead anyone, so it’s just a simple reminder that what you see on my blog (and other blogs) is not always what it seems. And to be totally honest, I usually eat more than you see on a single plate. :)

And in case you care, with this dinner I ate a bunch more fruits & veggies & a bagillion chips. I was way too lazy to actually put the chips on my plate though….hence no chip in the pic. #winning

Exhibit B

chicken and chips

I ate this dinner with Jared’s family a few weeks ago. And it was super yummy!

However, it’s missing the gobs of ketchup that I added (once again, out of laziness, I didn’t take another photo), the copius chips that I ate straight out of the bowl (sense a trend? hah), and the extra pickles that I grabbed.

Who really cares, right?

Exactly. We shouldn’t. We don’t need to compare or judge ever….but because we’re human we have a tendency to do so.

Just saying it how it is–don’t believe everything you read or see.

Exhibit C

the food-my plate

I ate this amazing plate of deliciousness at my sister’s house in CO. (And I wish I were eating it again tonight!)

What you don’t see in this pic is that the salad is actually quite massive (seriously huge!), that I ate 4 more slices (not kidding), and had another garlic knot.

I hadn’t eaten much lunch that day because church was during lunchtime, so by the time dinner rolled around (we ate around 4:30, actually), I was starving with a capital S. And so my body naturally wanted more food. duh. And I gave it to it.

I didn’t explain this then (it was a fun/recap post where I didn’t want to type it all out–once again, lazy with a capital L!), but I remember feeling kind of bad that I just threw the picture out there. Without saying that I totally added to that plate a bunch more times. Whoops.

But really. Who eats 1 slice of pizza?! Honestly.

Not this girl. I can down pizza like it’s my job.

But that’s a whole ‘nother post. ;)

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Anyways. See my point? I don’t intentionally mislead, I just am naturally lazy when it comes to this stuff (but oddly enough have crazy amounts of energy to teach fitness classes….I amaze myself sometimes with how little I make sense! hah)

Moral of the story? Don’t ever ever ever judge yourself against what I do or eat. Please. (Can’t speak for everyone obviously, but for the most part, I think we’re all a bit lazy & don’t feel like photographing every morsel we eat. Am I right??)

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Have a GREAT day! <3

(p.s. Please keep praying for Ashley & her sweet Hunter. Things to be looking a bit up–yay!–so keep the prayers coming! Read this post to get deets.)

What are some of YOUR thoughts on “not always what it seems” when it comes to blogs & photos on IG & FB?? What do YOU think we can DO about this??  How can I help create a healthier mindset?? Would YOU like me to be less lazy with photos?? <—please don’t answer this one. hehe ;)

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Comments

  1. I agree! Thank you for posting this! As someone who does suffer from disorder/binge eating, I’m totally upfront about that on my my blog so people know not to follow my eating habits! I’m trying to eat healthy, and most days I do now, but even so, even if my diet was 100% perfect for me, that doesn’t mean it’s 100% perfect for someone else!

  2. i def think itz all about how we interpret the pictures. for me, i know i don’t post nearly everything i consume, so i assume other bloggers are the same? and if that’s not the case.. uhhh ok? haha

  3. I think I moved away from photographing my meals for this reason alone! I’m a total grazer. I never put everything I eat on a plate :). So I could never realistically portray what I eat! Great post- gotta keep it real!

  4. Thanks for posting this Annette! it is so easy to fall into the comparison trap with bloggers, but we need to remember that we might not be seeing the whole story. Like you, they may be eating more than they photography, or they may really be suffering. It’s important to remember to do what’s best for your body, not live by someone else’s food plan and rules!

  5. Thank you for discussing this! I have a disclaimer on the side of my blog that clearly states that I don’t post everything I eat, however, I’ve still gotten a few very concerned people asking me if there’s anything wrong. Honestly, I’m just too lazy to photograph every meal. Heck, in some posts, I may just have one picture of breakfast, and that’s it for the day! I’m glad you mentioned this!

  6. Trisha says:

    Thank you Annette!! As a non-blogger, yet blog reader, I can attest that I’ve read some blogs and after doing so, felt like crap. Suffering from disordered eating , I often find myself comparing my meals and picks and bites to what the blog writers post. Thinking… “how do they eat so little?, That’s why they look so great.., They can control their meal… etc…”

    I love reading blogs as i’ve really been able to learn that i’m not alone in this struggle….It does help to read how other women have / had similar thoughts, feelings, and issues as me.

    As a reader, it’s nice to hear that the people we follow are just like us… going back for more, or grazing or not eating amounts fit for a bird. :) It helps to know that in the grand scheme of things and also helps put into perspective how important it is to listen to our OWN bodies.

    • danielle says:

      Hi Trisha, you totally wrote the words out of my mind :) I totally agree with everything you wrote!

      • You both are fabulous. :)

        And this is why I keep it real on the bloggity blog, because I am not hiding anything and am just like you all too! xoxo

  7. I always cringe a bit when I call myself a “healthy living blogger” because I feel like I’m just a “katie blogger”. And I definitely agree that people shouldn’t judge themselves against what we put up on our blogs, I read somewhere that it’s like comparing your daily life to everyone else’s “highlight reel”, they don’t see everything!

  8. danielle says:

    Big high fives for sharing this post and highlighting some stuff that I was certainly always wondering. You are so brave, positive and uplifting – I can certainly be a little sensitive when reading blogs, and yours is one that never triggers me or affects me in any negative way EVER!!! but other blogs/bloggers have triggered my mind and made me feel like either they may not be in a healthy place, or cause me to feel unsettled and anxious. Not really what I want, ya know? I’ve always been nervous to make a blog that involved my food – simply because I’ve come across other blogs by people who have had ED’s or still have ED’s that appear like the food pics might be… not helping them? I dunno, I really pray for anyone who’s had or has an ED and hope that they all heal in a positive way. For me, blogs are meant to uplift and energize and nurture, and your blog really does all of that and more for me. It’s always a treat and makes me smile. In the blog-o-sphere, it’s pretty rare so thank you!
    :)

    • danielle says:

      I should add that I don’t expect bloggers to always be in a good mood, or have bad days – of course we are all human! I just meant I’ve actually read some bloggers express the pressure they feel and how they feel they might need to maintain a certain something for the readers… basically what i mean is it’s hard if you’re recovering from an ED, it’s a very sensitive thing. I’ve been recovered for a long while now, but I know myself well enough to realize having my own blog would probably bring out some obsessive ways. Not positive, just sayin. okay, rant over… i’m just babbling now. help me! lol

  9. Loved what you’re saying here. Pictures can definitely be misleading! And we all need to be careful not to judge, and not to compare. Plus, we all have different needs at different times of day, too. There are so many factors!!

    I like to think about these blogs (and hope this is what others do with mine) as just a resource for some great ideas (and the fun of getting to “know” someone that might be a bit like-minded in some areas). Take and leave what works for you. Let it inspire you to try a new food, exercise, etc. And make it work for you!

  10. I know what you mean! You see, I have the opposite problem sometimes and feel the need to explain every detail and seriously who wants to read that long paragraph about one meal that I didn’t take a picture of? Uuuugh boring. So I feel bad leaving it out (misleading) but you know, I gotta keep it short and sweet and interesting! So I forgive you completely! Because this post was nice and to the point and interesting! And that’s what we’re all looking for right? And besides, if you posted everything you ate, wouldn’t you get judged the other way (omg, how can she eat all that?!) Can’t win!
    ~Ang

  11. Such a great post and a great reminder! Thank you!

    I am passionate about these kinds of things and have dedicated my blog to these kinds of messages so I appreciate reading others :)

    I also wrote a similar guest post on Carrots’N’Cake awhile back:
    http://www.thebalancedlifeonline.com/finding-balance/comparison-is-the-thief-of-joy-thoughts-on-social-media/

    Thanks again for your honesty!
    xo,
    Robin

  12. If I posted everything I ate, I would be blogging for 9 solid hours. I eat a lot!

  13. Thanks so much for this post – I do exactly the same and then feel awful that someone might think that is all I eat. Likewise, talking about exercise. If I’ve done an hour of running, chances are I’ve sat down a lot and rested in that day. Sometimes I read blogs and its like all people do is exercise!

  14. Morgan says:

    Thanks for your honesty in this post! I think especially for me, TYPE A – LITERAL THINKER, I see pictures on the blogs and think “WOW THEY ONLY ATE THAT MUCH… YOU TOO ONLY NEED TO EAT THAT MUCH!!!” I was for awhile thinking I just overate to the extreme because I got stuck/still stuck in the comparison trap and so looking at food pictures on blogs gets me comparing myself and how much/little I eat. It is nice to know that this is not all you eat!!! Thanks again for being a support system out there!!

  15. Of course none of us are perfect. We are all free to share a much or as little as we want. As long as we do it with a pure and honest intentions I think everything will work out just fine.

  16. It’s seriously so hard to capture every. single. thing. you eat! And honestly? NOT fun. Like at all haha. I’m not gonna pour myself a bowl of cereal just to snap a picture when I’d rather have a few handfuls straight from the box! The comparison trap is evil, what works for someone else won’t necessarily work for you anyway, everyone is different!

  17. Kristen says:

    Thanks so much for this post! As a nutrition specialist, I have been trained on how much food people should be eating depending on their weight goals. So many people do not each enough OR compare to others…. either its “she ate a cookie so I can to” or “all she had were veggies so that is all I am going to eat irregardless of how hungry I am.” Its such a vicious cycle! I always look forward to your posts! :)

  18. awesome truth post. I wish you were in colorado eating with me too! I’ll make all that for dinner right now if you can come! =)

  19. Love this! I used to always assume bloggers posted basically everything they ate. (I was young, okay? ;)) Now that I’M a blogger and trying to take pictures of my food, I totally know that they do NOT want to flip out the camera to record everything they eat!

  20. great post and you bring up so many great points! we wish the same thing that you do -that others do not judge us or judge their eats/workouts based off what we do. we just share as we know many people want to know. we do our best to document everything but sometimes we get lazy too and forget to mention something or forget to take a picture. it happens :)

  21. It’s a double edged sword- we want to see photos of food but then we also want the food to be a certain way. I never look at your food and say wow thats too much or too little because I feel I know you enough to know you’re incredibly healthy mentally and physically- other bloggers though I don’t know as well, I will admit I probably thing ugh they aren’t very healthy and it’s always in the sense of undereating and disordered eating. I omit as well, not on purpose but cbf taking pics of everything and telling them everything ALL the time- how boring. Plus I forget ;)

  22. I love the points that you make in this post, Annette. It’s sad but true– posting pictures of food and workouts often calls the attention of judgment and criticism.
    We’re ALL different and we ALL have different likes, dislikes, needs, and health requirements. As long as you know you’re doing what’s right for you, it doesn’t matter how your habits may appear to others!

  23. Great post girl! I don’t think anyone can ever make assumptions about what people eat based on pictures alone because they only tell part of the story. A photo of dinner says nothing about how much activity the person did that day, what they ate 2 hours before, whether they had dessert, whether they had seconds, etc.

  24. Yes! I wish more people understood this. We don’t try to mislead…we just take pictures when we feel like it! It’s not a constantly updating photostream:)

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