With the plethora of social media platforms and their various spins on communicating, it is worth our taking a few minutes to reflect our use of social media and how social Media has affected us and those around us!
On a positive note, social media facilitates our interaction with other people. It allows us to keep others aware of our activities, find others with similar interests, and lets us freely, easily connect with far away or long-lost friends. Social media can bring us enjoyment and even help us to relieve anxiety. It helps eliminate boredom.
Social media has brought significant change to our everyday lives, but there can be consequences to these changes.
For some of us social media may move from a convenience to an infatuation and even an addiction. We find that we can no longer enjoy an event unless we share it with friends and collect their often-superficial “thumbs up” or positive comments. Posting or tweeting becomes a compulsion and we cannot put our phones down, except for brief periods, without picking it up again and checking for comments or the posts of others.
While social media enables the rapid dissemination of information to people across our networks, because of this speed, false information, misleading information and hurtful information may be planted online and be considered as truthful or complementary information.
We may find that our smart phones, tablets and computers begin, more and more, to dominate our attention as we constantly peruse social media. As this infatuation grows, troublesome tendencies develop. We reduce our attention to those we care about, we exhibit reckless, divided attention while driving or moving about and we may even create embarrassing moments when taking selfies or find ourselves posting malicious comments we might ordinarily not have spoken.
Self-examination and awareness can help keep things in proper perspective and reduce self-inflicted pain or stress. Here are some suggestions:
- If you find yourself spending more and more time on social media and less and less time interacting with those physically around you then take a step back and view yourself as those around you do.
- Try limiting your posts to once or twice a day. Keep posts to subject matter that may be of genuine interest to others.
- Enjoy the moment, the real experience. Don’t spend all your time creating majestic media moments that might impress others. Instead take a quick picture and enjoy the real moment and the not posed experience.
- Take regular daily downtime from your devices. You will be surprised, but the world can get along without you and you’ll have more time for those really important things.