Social Media is Bad for You
There have been a ton of articles and stories in the past few months about how bad Social Media & Tech is bad for you. Even the creators of some Social Media platforms and tech companies do not allow their own kids use their own social media platform and tech gadgets. Well, there's a hint for you: it is kids. Of course they shouldn't own a tablet with their social media profile on it but sit in the backyard in a sandbox getting their hands dirty instead (I meant an actual sandbox, not a test environment, for all the techies reading this) ...
A lot has happened in technology and media in the last decade. I remember my first MySpace and Bebo profile. Little did I know how much Social Media would overtake our lives only within a few years. I think the “I don’t have a Facebook account” is the new “I don’t have a TV” statement.
When I hear people say: oh, looking at Facebook (or any other social media) I get really annoyed. Well, here’s some news for you: you create your own social media experience. Do not follow people that annoy you. Simple as that. Unfollow all the news outlets if you don’t want to hear about the latest Trump tweet or Brexit disaster.
You are in charge of your online experience. I know, sometimes it’s awkward not to accept a friend request or you feel obliged to follow back. Don’t feel obliged to do anything. And if you don’t want to see someone’s updates on Facebook because you don’t want to see yet another inspirational quote, holiday update, food picture or morning toilet rant, just mute them. They won’t be upset because they will never know. I’m pretty sure many people have muted me as much as I muted them. It’s ok. Don’t take it personal.
You can use different social media platforms for different moods and interactions. Everyone has their own preferences based on what kind of interactions they are looking for. For me, my personal Twitter account is a great way to get in touch with companies directly and get a quick response. Most companies have a good social media team and very often you can actually get a much faster response and a more positive interaction with them on Twitter compared to the standard channels. On Facebook I share a lot of news, funny videos and the occasional rant. I send it out there into the void, I guess it makes me feel better. Whether someone else sees my post or not I’m not really too concerned about anymore. It’s out there, I let it go. I've stopped hunting for acknowlegment long time ago. Instagram is my happy place. No negativity there. I scroll through my feed where I follow lots of professional photographers who post amazing images. And yes, I admit it, I follow some cat profiles. Don’t judge me, I know you like a good cat video too! Check out Timo, The Ragdoll. He’s hilarious.
Use social media for meaningful connections and do not disconnect yourself from the world by falling into the “I need to constantly show the world how great my life is” trap. Nothing good can come of this. Share the occasional food picture or holiday snap - there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, particularly when you have foodie friends who love to travel who enjoy seeing those. Know your audience! But don't act like the insecure teenager posting duck faces and boob shots from yourself or your girlfriend just to get attention. That's particularly sad to see when you act like this in your adult life. There’s no need to post every little thing you did in your every day life, no need to add a silly dog ears or princess filter on your selfie when you are over 10 years old.
Social Media is a great way to connect with family and friends, particularly when many of yours live in a different country.
So do not feel guilty when you spend a little time on Social Media. Do not worry about those reports that Social Media is bad for you. As long as you use Social Media responsibly and connect with others in a meaningful way it will enrich your life and not harm your life. And never forget to interact with real people and the real world.
And don't be shy - share this post on all your social media channels!