As I scroll through my Snapchat during my break at work, I cannot help but to watch Kylie Jenner’s snap story. Not so much for the pictures of her freshly, delivered pizza or her new nail color- because that’s not out of the ordinary for anyone. Instead I’m intrigued by the lavish cars, designer clothes, and A-list outings… let’s face it: MOST of us aren’t used to that! It’s the idea that she could’ve easily ordered a $500 pizza flown in from Italia that keeps me being a constant viewer. So yes, when I get in my car from work- it’s hard to not feel enough. Despite the fact that I work hard, earnestly, and am pursuing a career that requires more education than what most of Hollywood consists of, I still feel like an average joe compared to someone who is my age, a high school dropout, and parties every weekend.
And this feeling is an ongoing problem in America. People are spending money they don’t have to try to keep up with the Kardashians [pun intended]. We are downplaying the need for education, and making it seem like knowing how to market yourself on Instagram is a requirement for success. Our resumes, our accomplishments, and our hard work is no longer of importance. Reality TV has such a drastic impact on the perception of wants vs. needs, beauty, etc.- and it is not a positive impact, at that.
We must be responsible enough to remind ourselves and others that reality isn’t all that real. The “drama” that takes place is just as legitimate as the hair extensions and nose jobs. People, especially younger audiences, watch the shows for the entertainment, yet subconsciously pick-up mannerisms of those who appear on the series. Catty, manipulative people always have the most spotlight- and I don’t think those are the traits we want our future generations to aspire.
Most of these personalities are rich, attractive, and involved in scandal. From Real Housewives, to W.A.G.S., to The Bachelor- this pattern of what it takes to be a recognized television personality is consistent and false. We often forget of people like Oprah, who may not always be on the front cover of People with her new beau, but still is an internationally recognized philanthropist who has taken Hollywood by the reigns for decades. She is the type of role model we need to idolize- whose material is raw and not overdramatized for better ratings.
The saying ‘it’s not what you know, it’s who you know’ is unfortunately true now. Reality TV effects our perception of what matters in this world. While it is important to socialize and live life to t’s fullest, it is not necessary to break the bank or be involved in bar fights to be successful. Balance is a necessity in happy, fulfilled life- and reality TV lacks that. We are all interested in where Kyle is vacationing to next- but let’s not stay up too late watching that stuff: we have work at 8am tomorrow.