Becoming ‘that girl’ was one of the biggest trends of last year. “You have to start romanticising your life,” said thousands of influencers on social media as they posted videos of waking up at 6 am, journaling, meditating, working out, hydrating, eating clean and doing elaborate skincare routines. Do you even have your life together if you’re not eating avocado on toast for breakfast? In 2022, we’re handing that toxic productivity and positivity mindset a giant bag of flamin’ hot Cheetos and a Netflix subscription. In short, we’re going into goblin mode.
More a mood than an identity or permanent lifestyle, goblin mode rejects the influencer culture and the Instagrammable life it comes with. Basically, when in goblin mode, you just let yourself be. And if staying in bed all day, binge-watching trash reality TV while also mindlessly scrolling through your phone and eating copious amounts of junk food is what you want to do, then so be it. With everything being so perfect in the online world, goblin mode accepts your feelings of being unmotivated and embraces your inner slob.
The credit for the recent spike in searches for goblin mode goes to a fake viral headline about actress Julia Fox and her ex Kanye West’s breakup. “He didn’t like when I went goblin mode” it read. Julia denied ever using that term, but by then it was everywhere.
When people say “goblin mode” this is what they mean https://t.co/LEaCJOej93
— active participant dave mcnamee (@DaveMcNamee3000) February 19, 2022
Goblin Mode: A Social Media Trend Or Just Real Life?
When I first heard about the trend, it sounded all too familiar. These are things I do when I’m home alone anyway, I mean what are weekends for? Goblin mode tries to normalise a complete lack of aesthetic, but my question is why does it have to be normalised in the first place? Isn’t letting loose the most normal thing to do when not having to be presentable for the outside world? I for one certainly do not have the tendency to wear a bra, skinny jeans and makeup for midnight movie marathons on my living room couch and I’m sure you don’t either. If tying my hair up in an unkempt bun, wearing my comfy sweatpants three days in a row and eating takeout makes me a goblin, then I wonder what it’s like to be human.
Another argument against the term is that this way of living isn’t a ‘mode’ that can be switched on and off for people with mental health issues or disabilities. They live in goblin mode, not by choice but because their circumstances are so.
A Healthy Balance Is The Key
However, as flawed as it may be, goblin mode in a way encourages you to accept the messy parts of your life including your feelings and emotions. It lets you drop the facade you show to the world. In healthy amounts, merging the goblin mindset with everyday life doesn’t seem like such a bad idea. For some, it could manifest as feeling more confident in their greying hair, for others it could be about giving up the need to please other people. Above all, it’s about being comfortable being your most authentic self, even if that’s an unshowered, crumb-covered goblin. Move over hot girl summer, this year we’re all about #feralgirlsummer.