Think Different Theory

social media kill you josh forti

This Will Kill You, And Social Media Isn’t Helping


In this episode, I’m going to talk about something that was killing me and I didn’t even know it – comparison.


The comparison with others will make you super unhappy and, whether you believe it or not, social media is nothing but comparison. It escalates the problem to a whole new level. The biggest thing that was making me unhappy was my comparison of others and it was all coming from social media.

It’s ridiculous, honestly, that I didn’t even realize my issue with comparison was as bad as it was when I made the change. I decided to change because, when I did the did the research and read these statistics, it was clear that there was nothing that was killing me more and that was making me sadder and more depressed than comparison. It was unreal.

We will dive into this here. I want to focus on the comparison and how the comparison is making you unhappy and how social media is contributing to that.

I talked about this in the last episode where I started asking the question of ‘why’ to everything because I wanted to trace things back to the source. Here I will tell you how I found the culprit of my unhappiness.


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January 07, 2019


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This Is Ridiculous. Honestly, I didn’t even realize it was as bad when I made the change. I did it because there was nothing that was killing me more and that was making me sadder and more depressed than this, and then when I did the did the research and read these statistics, it was unreal. It’s just crazy. 

01:59 So let’s, let’s dive into this here. Like right away, the topic here, like I said, is more. I want to focus on comparison and how comparison making you unhappy, but how social media is doing that and I want. I’m going to talk about social media, social media statistics here. So the thing that made me more unhappy than anything else, okay. And I didn’t realize it was comparing myself to other people on social media. So I talked about this in the last episode where I started asking the question of why to everything because I wanted to trace things back to the source. All right? So while I wake up in the morning, why did I want money? Why was I unhappy? Why was I happy? Why was I stressed? Why did I want, you know, whatever it was, I started asking the question why and one of the things that this was a or that, that through this process that I discovered, I was asking myself the question of why am I unhappy?

03:01 And I was also asking myself the question of why am I stunting my own success and not letting myself go when. And I started tracing things back to the source and what I realized was, is that comparison of myself to people that were similar to me in my industry that I was following on social media was seriously making me majorly depressed. Like I cannot tell you how much I would wake up and I would roll over and I went, you know, grab my phone. Typical, you know, 24 year old kid. Uh, I’m on social media, I do social media for a living. I check Instagram, I check facebook. The first thing in my face, I see everybody’s Instagram feeds everything that they’re doing facebook as everything that they’re doing. Another person, another win. And like I wanted to be happy for these people. I really did.

03:49 But deep down inside I’m like, Ooh, Ooh, another person winning. And I’m not. Even though I might have just killed it, I remember we did a launch and it, this was I think July, end of July, and we did like $42,000 in a nine-day period we’ve made. And like the day afterward that we did all this, I got on social media and I was super depressed and I couldn’t figure out why and it’s because I saw everybody else out there question, oh, so and so just how to, you know, just cross seven figures, so and so just did a six-figure launch, so and so just got featured in some magazine, so and so got this or whatever. And it was just so depressing. And so I started asking myself like, what, what was causing me to be unhappy, what was causing me to hold myself back?

04:38 And I realized that this was it, this was comparison. And so I thought back to like pre-social media. So for those of you that don’t know, I grew up pretty conservative. Uh, I wasn’t like, I didn’t have Instagram until I was 20, probably facebook until I was 18. I’m texting on my phone until I was 18. Very, very low. I grew up a dial-up internet, so like super, super not connected with modern day technology. I grew up on a farm and I noticed that really the only time that I would compare myself to other people and whether or not I was like better or worse was when, uh, I would be like something that I was super competitive and so like when I was playing ultimate Frisbee or you know, when I was out trying to win a game, it’d be like who’s the best person?

05:22 I try to like level up and be, you know, be the best person I want to be the best. I’m very competitive. But then I got into the social media world and I want to talk about how social media is designed because once I realized this and once I realized what it was doing, like it was a hard realization because I’m like, Nah, I can use social media the right way. I can know I can control my social media consumption. I’m not going to be affected by status of others. I actually thought that. And then I just went and started looking at how social media was designed. Okay. And how people are using it. Social media is literally the platform giving its user’s permission to upload whatever type of content that they want and connect it with their friends and now followers, but when it started it with friends, family, people that they were connected with.

06:13 Now if you’re sitting at home in your pajamas and nobody else is around, you’re going to act one way, right, and when you go out in public, let’s say it was to try and to oppress someone, you’re going to get dressed up. You are going to be fancy. You’re going to be on your best behavior, quote-unquote, more or less, right? Well, on social media, we always are trying to look good. We’re always trying to put out our best side. There’s filters on Instagram, hundreds of them, right? Hundreds of different things. You can do filters on Snapchat editing. We can show our best sides of our face. We can blur out or edit things we don’t want. So social media is literally everybody showing their best side of themselves and everything that they do to the world. It is a highlight reel, especially Instagram. Instagram is the worst, is a highlight reel of somebody else’s life and it doesn’t show any of their thoughts and if there’s a lot of their emotions, anything that they’re going through, like nothing and it just makes it look like everybody’s life is happy and amazing and Hunky Dory because that’s what we want people to see and it’s really bad in the influencer world, right?

07:26 The world that I’m in, you know, I have managed hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram and have grown and been part of, you know, million multimillion follower networks, right? I have a friend that owns $85, million followers, managers like $200. Million is ridiculous, okay? And it’s always putting out the best thing. What picture is going to get the most likes? What’s gonna? Get more engagement. The more exposure, the more growth. We all need it. We all want it. So now I want you to think about something. You wake up and let’s say you’re following on up to 300 people and you’ve got four or 5,000 friends on facebook, right? You get on Facebook, you get on Instagram, you are now looking at, and let’s just say, I dunno, you scroll through for 10 minutes and you look at 100 different pictures, 100 different statuses. You’ve now seen highlights of 100 other people’s lives.

08:14 What they want you to see as the best part of their lives. It doesn’t matter if they’re depressed or not, they’re gonna put out their best side. It doesn’t matter if they’ve won or not or lost. They’re going to put out there winning side. Does it matter like what they’re doing? It’s always going to be through the perception of how they want you to see it and all these people that are like, oh, I’m so authentic. You know? Most of the time they’re showing authenticity through the lens that they want you to see. All right. Now I’m not saying necessarily that’s a bad thing, but I’m saying this is happening at mass scale, so when you get up, you look like crap. You feel like crap. You’ve just woken up in the morning, you’ve got a long day ahead of you. You probably don’t feel like getting out of bed and you open up Instagram.

08:53 The first thing that happens is you see posts of everybody else winning. You’re automatically in a bad mood. Now you go out there and you’ve set goals for the day, for the week, for the month in your business or whatever, and someone that’s selling something similar to yours or someone that’s doing something similar to you do that you do or someone that you don’t really like. Post an image of themselves doing really well or post a status about a huge wind they just did. Now you’re mad. Now you’re depressed. Now you’re like, Oh man, I wish I could be that man. I wish I could be that. Oh Man, I wish I could be that. We’re following all these celebrities that are traveling the world that are doing really cool things and let me tell you, I’ve met a lot of them. I’ve been blessed to meet a lot, a lot, a lot, a lot, a lot of people, and a lot of really wealthy people.

09:37 A lot of very influential people hang out with top YouTubers, Instagrammers, lot of them were super depressed. A lot of them are super sad. Their lives are just as messed up as yours. Probably way more messed up, but you don’t know that you don’t feel that because it’s right there in the moment, and so I started asking myself the question. I was like, I wonder how much time I spend on social media and then I wonder how much time the average person spends on social media. And I was actually pretty blown away by the statistics. So I’m the average person and by the way, let me. I’m going to quote my sources here. This is from Neil a The average time spent per adult, so this is not even kids, which I’m sure astronomically bigger than this. The average adult, 18 years or older in 2018 spends on average of 11 hours consuming some portion or some form of media k be that TV social, a video game, some sort, 11 hours a day.

10:50 All right. Now I drove down a little bit further and I was like, okay, let’s specifically do social media. My age group, like millennials and millennial, maybe some gen x in there, a little bit younger crowd. The average person spends between 27 and 32 hours per week on social media. Thirty two hours a week. Let’s just average it out and call it an even 30, 30 hours a week. Looking at somebody else’s highlight reel. Thirty hours a week of comparing yourself to somebody else that has different goals, different ambitions than you do and you’re sitting there comparing yourself. You’re doing it subconsciously. You don’t like. You can be happy for that other person. You can be sad for that, but whatever you are comparing yourself because it’s natural human nature to go and do that. Now I talked to a couple people about this and I was like, Hey, do you think this is affecting you and some of the results, where are some of the people I asked were like, oh yeah, I mean I think it is blah blah blah.

11:48 So you know, really? And some people were like, not, I don’t really think it’s affecting me that much. And I said, okay, let me put this perspective for you. Thirty hours a week, 30 hours a week divided by, uh, seven days is 30. Let me do it right now. Three divided by four point two, eight. So call it four point two, four point two hours a day that you’re spending on social media for easy numbers. Let’s call it four hours. If I were to come into your room for four hours a day and tell you that somebody else was better than you for four hours a day. And I was like, Hey, insert your name here. Yeah, you’re not as good as so and so man. Yeah, that other person really, they just did soccer way better than you today. They did, man. They got more followers than you.

12:40 Yeah, that really sucks. Oh Man, uh, you know, did you? Did you see so and so make all that money. Oh man, did you see so and so’s traveling the world? Amen. Just that beautiful beach picture a man so and so’s got a way cooler life than you. Oh Man. So and so was making more money. Has a hotter girlfriend, a better boyfriend, make you know whatever has a better job, better career. Got The benchmark that you’re chasing before you did. If I did that for three or four hours a day, how would that affect you? It would kill you. It would weigh mess up your brain. It would weigh, mess up your mind. All right, we are not supposed to have that. It’s, it’s a comparison like you’re comparing yourself to all these other people all the time and is constantly in your face and so-and-so and it’s the worst on youtube.

13:28 Click Bait right now on youtube this and let’s just pretend and I want to be reasonable here. Let’s pretend that half half of it was you being productive on social media, watching productive how-tos and things like that and only half of it was catching up with your friends and celebrities that you follow. So two hours a day of me coming in there and doing that for you. That’s still mess you up. It messed me up man. I get like, oh, and we’ll get into this on a future episode. Like the importance of your environment, but oh my gosh. Like I can’t deal. I can’t be around negative people for like 15 minutes or like people that are putting me down or you know, thinking it drives me nuts. It puts me in a really bad mood, gets me really depressed. And then I realized I was literally doing this.

14:11 I spend probably seven hours a day on social media or I did in 2018. All right. Seven hours a day on facebook and Instagram. It was ridiculous. And some days it was way more than that. Like some days it was like 11 or 12 on social media alone and I was like, oh my gosh, I’m literally doing this to myself. I’m literally letting this happen and this comparison factor and I would get on and I actually traced this back and I started. I took it one step further as I was going through and I was trying to figure out if this was really, really affecting me because I didn’t believe it at first I did it. I went and I started trying to figure out the top people that I was comparing myself to. And so what I did is every single time I took a lot of self awareness. All right. There’s like a lot of self discipline and like just honesty with myself to go who am I comparison comparing myself to and who is it that I like vocally want to win, but secretly I’m like hurting or upset or feel like it really down on myself whenever I see them win because I feel like they’re doing better than me.

15:13 And I started making a list and every single time I’d get on social media and like keep like a little note, a running notepad by me and I write down be like, oh, this person. And I started writing down names and this has nothing to do with them. Remember, this is not the other person’s fault. Alright? This has nothing to do with that because let them go and win and I want. I want people to have success. Right. But I started writing it down. I was like, oh my gosh, this person, oh my gosh, this person. Some people that I didn’t even realize were affecting me, and so I said, you know what? Rather than like, just going cold Turkey because my life is on social media, I can’t cut it out or whatever. Let me just unfollow those people. And so on. Facebook, I didn’t unfriend them necessarily, you know, a lot of them were my friends, I just unfollowed them because I want, once again, it’s not their problem, it’s mine.

16:00 I want a lot of these people to win, right? They’re doing a good work. So I unfollowed them on facebook. I and there’s a reason I only follow three people on Instagram. Okay, that’s it. I unfollowed all these people and I’m, I kid you not. Within the first week I was happier. I was not so hard on myself. I was more productive and just overall felt better and I was like, this is ridiculous. This is incredible. And it was because of this comparison game. And I remember, I’m like, I want to drive this point home to help you guys understand if you’re depressed right now, if you’re struggling with this, you are not alone. Your normal everybody does. I would literally go and on a Thursday afternoon I would be laying in my bed looking up at the ceiling on top of my covers doing nothing because I was so depressed that everybody else was winning.

17:02 And I wasn’t. When in reality I was basically doing the same thing as they were. But because I couldn’t see my results, I wasn’t focusing on what I was doing. I was focusing on what everybody else was doing. I was like, I’m so depressed. And this is true in all areas of life, business, sports, school, uh, your job, wherever you’re at, comparison is big. It’s like a thing that you have to be aware of. And social media is amplifying this at such insane levels. Please, please stop comparing yourself to other people. They are not on your path. You are on your path. Focus on what you’re doing. And so I went out there and I started setting little goals and eliminating all interaction with these people and try to get off of social media as much as possible. Social media is becoming a second reality for a lot of people and hopefully you’re not there yet, but most of us are what’s going on on social and then my regular life, there’s a big huge world outside of social media and I didn’t start realizing it until the last couple months as started spending less time and less time.

18:10 Guys, I live on social media. It’s what I get paid for. It’s what I do. I’ve grown millions of followers, grown and managed millions of followers on social media, worked with some big names. I understand the platform is very well. I teach it. If I can do this, you can do this too. And I started getting off. I realized so quickly that this was making me feel better, that I deleted social media apps off my phone. I don’t have the Snapchat app on my phone anymore. I don’t have the facebook app on my phone anymore as of December 31st. And this is really big for me because my whole business run on this messenger off my phone, facebook messenger. I get 30 to 50 messages a day at least on a messenger, like unique conversations on messenger, deleted it, gone, moved all of my primary stuff over to a different communication platform so that I wasn’t getting distracted.

19:10 And I became so happy. Much happier. I started wasting less time. I started being more focused and I stopped comparing myself and guess what I would go and a lot of the people that I was comparing myself to, I was their friends. And so I’d hit them up and guess what? When I hit them up now and when we talk, I genuinely can be happy for them and genuinely be like, dude, that’s awesome. You know, because I’m not comparing myself from them on a daily basis. And I can go, man, congratulations. And here’s the big thing for me that I realized that a lot of people don’t talk about. Not only because I’m not comparison comparing myself to them on a daily basis, but because that time now is spent on that time and that energy is spent on me moving my dreams forward, me moving my goals forward, me doing what I wanted to do and me becoming the best version of myself.

20:13 You’ve got to realize that comparison will kill you. There is like there’s 7 billion people in the world and it’s only getting more by the day. There will always be someone ahead of you. Always, always. There will always be someone that’s less than you always play it just. It’s impossible to be the best quote on quote you need to be. You need to be different and that’s. That’s what thing different theories all about. That’s why I have this podcast is to help you realize this and to think different. Set your own goals so when someone made more money than you, if you’re chasing money, you’re chasing the wrong thing anyway. I’m not chasing money. Someone message. This is true story. I’m gonna end with this. Someone messaged me today and I’m going to read this. I’m gonna. Pull this up and he had messaged me, I don’t know, months and months ago, like, oh, probably over a year ago and pitched me some like, Hey, I want you to come in on his business idea with me, blah, blah, blah, like all this stuff and you know, went off.

21:13 And I was like, you know what man, I’m really interested. He’s like, dude, we’re going to be rich. We’re gonna do this, we’re going to all this stuff. Right? And I was like, dude, I’m just really not interested in it right now. Not For me. I didn’t really believe in that, you know, the kind of the business plan or the idea or anything like that. Right. And he literally, he messages me today two hours before this episode was being filmed and basically goes and is like, dude, I’m a multimillionaire now. I’m laughing at the fact that you’re not like, you basically suck. Um, how did your year go? I mean, just like really dogging on me, right? And uh, like I read the message, didn’t reply at his last thing was a, I make fun of you for the ells. And I’m like, I don’t even know what that means.

21:54 And so then he went and I read it, I didn’t reply and he came back at me again and he goes, you out, you could have been rich with me essentially. Right? And I just replied back and I left at this and he’s replied back on one of times I haven’t done. I said, yeah, but I’m happy. Money doesn’t drive me. Happiness does enjoy your success. All right. Yeah, he’s made more money than I have. Yeah. So what, like, who cares? I’m not a millionaire yet. And so what if I’m a millionaire at 27 or 30, like, what am I going to do? My life isn’t going to change that much because I’m not chasing money. I’m chasing purpose. I’m chasing a better life. I’m chasing, helping people. I’m chasing my dreams and my goals. And the day I could not. I could not have said that three months ago, six months ago, a year ago, I would have been devastated.

22:47 I would have been like, oh my gosh, um, you know, did I make the right decision? I made the rounds and blah, blah. I stopped comparing myself to people and how that changed. I used to compare myself to people all the time and I was the most miserably, miserably depressed person. I knew I was upset with myself all the time, even though I portrayed an image of happiness, I was struggling and then I stopped comparing myself and my entire life changed. And that started with me getting off of social media. I’m not antisocial media, I’m super anti comparison, but I understand how social media works. I understand how it is designed. It is designed to give you those hits that make you want to stay on there longer, that make you feel good. And when you don’t get those, you get depressed and you get those off of comparison.

23:35 Oh, people like me or they don’t like me. Stop it. Go Chase your dreams. Go Chase your goals. Go do what you love to do, and my Gosh, stop comparing yourself to other people. No one is you. No one will ever be you and no one is capable of what you are capable of. All you have to do is think differently about everything that you know and then go out and chase your dream fiercely and never stop. All right. I hope this episode help guys very, very passionate about this. Obviously, if you can, I would highly recommend considering getting off social media or at least deleting the apps off your phone and limiting your time on there. Just go find a hobby. Find something you love to do. It will seriously change your life forever. And hit me up on DM. If you guys want some ideas or more clarification on this or have any questions, hit me up in the DM on Instagram @joshforti

24:25 Um, and let me know, like, let me know if this help, if you like this, if you didn’t like it is going to the place to be, uh, @joshforti, j o s h f o r t i on Instagram. We’d love to hear feedback guys, as always, hustle the hustle. God bless. Do not be afraid to think different because those of us that think different are going to be the ones that changed the world and remember, when you think different, you’re going to be misunderstood, so don’t be afraid to do that because you know that’s all right. I love you all and I will see you on the next episode. Take it easy fam piece.

24:53 Yo, what’s up guys? You’ve been listening to the think different theory with myself, Josh 40, which I like to call a new paradigm of thinking and real quick, I got a question for you. Did you like this episode? If you did, I want to ask a huge favor. See the biggest thing that helps this podcast grow and that will spread this message of positivity and making the world a better place is if you leave a review or rating and subscribe to the podcast. What that does is it basically tells the platforms that this is out on that you like my stuff and then I’m doing something right. So if you could take like three seconds out of your day and subscribe, leave a rating and review, I will be forever grateful for you. Also, I want to hear from you. I want to know your feedback, your ideas, and your questions for future episodes. So be sure to hit me up on Instagram in the DM @joshforti or via email