As yet another month begins with no release in sight from this house arrest the world has been sentenced to by the damned pandemic, Twitter has found a way to keep itself entertained. (And well, a little bit miserable too.) Twitterati is sharing throwback pictures of themselves from January 2020 when they were blissfully unaware of the curse of the coronavirus quarantine. The challenge reads, “A photo of you in January 2020 without imagining what was to come.”
While some users are looking back at pictures of themselves partying, relaxing, holidaying – events that now seem like exotic rarities from another life – others are finding joy in pictures of themselves doing mundane tasks like walking on roads or going to the market. All in all, with this new trend, people in the online community are finding laughter in pain and trying to lessen their load of gloom by sharing it with each other.
A Photo Of You In January 2020: Best Pictures
Rarely are there days on the internet when everyone is not at each others’ throats, and these days, invariably, are those when a trend takes over people’s imaginations on Twitter. All the camaraderie and affability one witnesses during such times are really something to cherish. And so we are. To add to your dose of sorrow at not being able to resume normal life, and then to remedy that very sorrow with the satisfaction that we are all in the same boat, here are some of the best pictures, or rather captions from the trend:
Me in January 2020: Buying a car, planning a 50 city road trip across India. 😂 pic.twitter.com/q5Pz4ePHJp
— Shruti Chaturvedi (@adhicutting) September 1, 2020
— Shreemi Verma (@shreemiverma) September 1, 2020
Smiling Through The Pain Together In Solidarity
While we bask in the glory of our past lives that were oh-so-happening, it’s worth exploring why people are gaining joy by painfully sharing and looking at pictures of each other. Does it help with psychological well-being? Is it healthy?
It’s safe to say, backed by professional research, that our screentime on social media has increased manifold ever since the COVID-19 outbreak – over 87 percent, a study in March claimed. Stuck at home, the internet has become life support for everything, from searching up Dalgona coffee recipes to shooting work emails back and forth (some days even past office timings).
More specifically, Twitter saw a 30 percent rise in daily average users during the beginning of lockdown, a KalaGato report noted. While the report said that the increased usage could be attributed to the alternative people were searching for instead of utilising “the hours usually spent in traffic or looking busy at the office,” social media has helped greatly in keeping netizens’ moods up.
Online challenges, like pictures from January 2020 or the Black and White Challenge, have been keeping everyone busy and light-hearted. Something we all need desperately. As clinical psychologist Prerna Kohli told Livemint, “Successfully completing a challenge not only keeps you occupied while you are staying home, but also makes you feel like you’re in control. This, in turn, relieves anxiety.”
Picture Credit: zeenews.com
Views expressed are the author’s own.