“Its Friday. Work Hard, Play hard” reads out the caption on my Instagram.

To be honest, I am broke and this post is meant to overcompensate for my insecurity and justify why I’m ignoring my friends phone calls.

“Naona uko works…. Good stuff” a friend of mine comments. It’s so easy to post your aspirations on social media to portray an incorrect representation of your real life. The validation is addictive. When I notice that my crush loves my photo, I’m hooked. I’m now smiling at the phone ‘Click’, I visit her profile and do some low-key stalking.

“Kumbe anapendanga kibanda kama mimi?” I say to myself. I now literally know every clothing item in her wardrobe. In fact, if I was to meet her today, I’d probably say “Si hii ni ile nguo ulipost 55 weeks ago? Ni poa”

I’m far from doing what I had posted on social media. Minutes turn to hours and by the time I realize, its already lunch time. “Darn it!” I say to myself. Where has all the time gone. It doesn’t help that our office has this culture of switching off on Friday afternoons as we anticipate partying or going home early.

Now I have loads of pending work and on top of that, I have lied to my social media followers that I’m getting work done. If my boss followed me on Instagram, he would have confused me with ‘Employee of the month’ based on my posts.

Posting the pictures with dope filters is addictive. You want to stop but you can’t. Posting on social media during work reminds me of primary school days when I had homework but chose to watch wrestling instead saying “I’ll wake up early in the morning or copy from a classmate”. This always ended up with a severe punishment.

Sometimes I scroll through my social media posts to see whether I’m projecting the right image. “Does this photo look like I’m living my best life?” It doesn’t tell the story of how I’ve become too dependent on my phone and can’t stop. It doesn’t tell of how I feel the need to brag about my useless experiences. It doesn’t tell the story of how I’ve become dependent on the validation from strangers and always respond to notifications with enthusiasm thinking “Haiya…. Who liked my stuff”.

I have become like a socialite, only that I’m not getting paid to shake my booty by some Nigerian oil baron.

“The internet used to be a place where we went to get away from the real world. Now we go to the real world to get away from the internet” – Unknown

Everybody is now on their phones. I’m not alone. In important meetings, my bosses are always responding to e-mails. When I’m hanging out with my friends, we are all on our phones responding to people that are miles away. I’m always attempting to take a photo of something I think is cool and will get me maximum likes.

As a result of this dependence on my phone, I’m not getting much work done this Njaanuary. I have a serious problem. SERIKALI SAIDIA