As we get more into the digital space in connecting and communicating with people, I love that it is so convenient but I also get bothered by some of the toxicity the we are invariably exposed to. Of course, we know that once we decide to put ourselves out there, we must understand and navigate our digital footprint to best meet our needs while taking into consideration the vulnerabilities of being in the cyber world.
Some key take aways from recent experiences on social media which I would like to share are:
Grow a thick skin if you are posting your opinions or work on your social media handles. It is inevitable that there will be people who disagree with you, judge you, and have no qualms in disgracing you with harsh comments. And don’t be surprised if some of these comments come from people you consider to be friends.
Be certain about fact-based information that you are re-posting especially in areas of health, finance and law. Misinformation in these areas can be detrimental to someone’s wellbeing in uncertain terms.
Constant need for attention and recognition is really bad for your mental wellbeing. You cannot measure your worth in the number of likes and comments you get on your posts, or the followers you have. If you are doing that, you are in a bad space and need to re-evaluate your priorities in life.
Your data is not your data. You are leaving a digital footprint of important information about yourself that can be used by individuals and companies, without your permission.
Always remember, the control is in your hands and your head… You can control what you see and you can control what others see. Get yourself educated on beating algorithms and be selective in your likes. Post when you want to, not with the pressure that you will be left out if you don’t. Use intent and wisdom.
It’s not all bright and beautiful in the digital world. People enhance images of how they look, people tend to post only the good, fun moments, people often design how they want to be perceived… it’s not a real reflection of who they are and what their life is like. Don’t compare your life to others and make yourself miserable for the things you do not have.
Social media is what you make it. It is a wonderful tool if used mindfully, and has played an incredible role during the pandemic in bringing people together to work on solutions to big and pressing challenges.
But also know that time is a precious commodity and each one of us only has so much: think of all the other things that you may want to experience in flesh, for real, and it may just be able to help you decide how much time and importance you want to place on the virtual world.