Have you guys heard about Essena O’Neill? She’s an Australian teenager and Instagram phenom who boasted more than half a million followers and made some good money marketing products to them. She recently made waves and started quite the conversation – first by editing her captions to expose the photos as “contrived perfection made to get attention,” and then quitting Instagram altogether.
O’Neill seems to have tapped into something huge, something that many people can relate to, even if they don’t have hundreds of thousands of followers. She made the move she did because she wanted to escape the pressures of feeling like she always needed to be logged in, tracking “likes”, sharing, updating … I’m exhausted just writing about it! Beyond that, she seems really committed to exposing FOMO (I won’t make you look it up – it’s fear of missing out) – according to O’Neill, her pictures are not real life. They are staged, crafted, and one of many takes to get the perfect shot. Lots of people see others on social media and feel bad … here’s someone peeking from behind the curtain saying we don’t need to.
While this is obviously a case of a social media “celebrity” who is affected on a grand scale, it’s indicative of a problem that so many of our young people are facing today. They are constantly plugged in; constantly feeling the pressure to, in essence, make a personal brand that is showcased by their social media prowess. We think about this a lot, mostly because it’s one of the biggest reasons summer camp is so essential. When kids get to camp, they are often relieved that electronics, the Internet, and social media are just not allowed. So for an entire summer, they are free.
When kids have the chance to unplug and get away from the ever-present screens that now dominate all of our lives, they have the chance to learn new things about themselves. They can try new things with their hands and minds, learn new skills, or surprise themselves by taking a risk knowing they are in a safe environment. There is nobody counting or tracking “likes” at camp. There is no pressure to get the perfect image or write the perfect caption. There is only the outdoors, the water, the fresh air, the trees, good friends, counselors who love you unconditionally, fun things to do, and time to enjoy it all.
We know that summer camp in Maine is our favorite place to unplug. Do you agree? Share on our Memories page about why your Maine camp will always have a special place in your heart.
Then turn off the computer and go outside.
Maine Camp Experience Resources & Tools
Looking for the perfect Maine camp for your child? Try out our helpful tool where you can select a camp by choosing: type of camp (girls, boys or coed) and session length (1-8 weeks). It helps to narrow down a few camps to a manageable list that includes rates. Then you can research these camps in more depth.
Next, be sure to contact our Maine Campcierge™ to discuss these camps as well as for free, year-round advice and assistance on choosing a great Maine summer camp for your child.
Talk to Laurie, our Maine Campcierge™, about choosing the right camp for your child and what to do in Maine.