The Problem with Social Media? It's Me, It's Not You
That one word was my first new Facebook status in months. No explanation. No follow up. Just the word, "you."
At first, mostly everyone glazed over it and passed it by. Then a few people followed it up with jokes and snarky comments. Yet, I held back a reply.
Until one of my young, terminally analytical, left-brained friends (you know the type: the ones so gifted mentally that illogical statements or off-beat humor often short-circuit their Beautiful Minds?) just couldn't take it anymore, and had to ask. So I told her.
I have a friend with whom I have grown close. They have recently looked to me for relationship advice. They are going through a particularly tough time and were making some bold moves to help the situation. I wanted them to know that I was there for them I was thinking about them. But then I realized how I really had that sentiment for most of the people I communicate with through social media.
I've written a few eBooks and a blog about social media and helped many grasp the best practices. One of the first things I stress is the importance of remaining personal. Social media as the name implies needs to be friendly and it needs to have something about you -- not just your company or product -- but the actual living human behind that keyboard or smartphone.
But I've noticed a general overall malaise with social media, and with Facebook in general. I think part of the boredom is that we all spend too much time posting about us, about our families, our jobs, our causes, our favorite whatevers. But that's not being social -- it borders on being narcissistic. We all get so caught up in our daily lives that we are even too busy to make contact through Facebook -- which provides impersonal contact at best.
So the post was intentionally vague on the surface. It might be read by a friend who's going through a rough patch, or someone who holds a special place in my heart, or just an old colleague with whom I remember sharing times. Hopefully, everyone interprets it differently and uniquely, and how it is intended in my heart.
So when I made the single word post, there was actually something more behind it. Facebook is so "Me, Me, Me" I wanted to make a post about others. Remind those friends and loved ones that you are thinking of them even if you've been remiss about making contact. Try it. The results might surprise...you.