What has social media done to you? #5TTT

Hi all,

Remember back in the day when the internet started being something we could have in our homes? If you were lucky, you had a massive ‘piece of equipment’ PC and you spent your evenings talking to friends on MSN messenger about the same things you had also spent the past 8 hours of school talking about.

Fast forward a few years and I was off to university. At this point Facebook was only available to people attending select universities, and it never really fussed me. Until a few years in and my university was accepted. Of course we signed up! This looked so cool! Still, it was only something you looked at when and if you were connected to the internet… and even then it was about posting when you were having a party… and revealing said pictures from party!

Fast forward 13 years and social media has just exploded. Everyone has constant access to the internet. Everyone is on Facebook, your mum, your auntie, all of your friends. And then there is Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and so on and so forth. Has the way we communicate as a society really changed so much in the space of 13 years? I don’t think anyone could argue that the answer to that has to be ‘yes’. 

What has social media done to you?

For this weeks 5 top tips, I dug deep to look at the relationship I have with social media and what it has done to me. What does social media reveal about the world around me? What has it brought to my attention? These are my thoughts. Maybe you agree, maybe you don’t, maybe social media means something very different to you. Let me know below what you think.chase the red grape

Connection

Social media will always be worth it’s weight in gold to me, simply because of connection. Being on the other side of the world from my family and friends has been tough but social media allows me to be a part of life over there still. It allows me to keep connected with my old communities and friends. I cannot imagine how hard it would be to have to disconnect from all these important people and places – thankfully I don’t have to.

Desire

Social media has enabled me to desire more than I ever could have dreamed of. Maybe for you this desire is a good thing, you see something you want and you figure out a way to get it. It pushes you, it drives you, you can see an end. For me, desire can lead to pressure, confusion and often unhappiness. Most of the time it’s about things or opportunities I never even considered or was aware of. Social media can make me feel bad for not wanting it or not having it.

Why not me?

Yes the comparison game. Why don’t I have this? Why do they have it and not me? What have I done wrong? Do I not deserve the same opportunities? Am I no good? We glance at something, take one look and that’s all we need to bring ourselves down and tear ourselves to shreds. We no longer live in our bubble. We can see every single bubble in the world. We feel judged, we judge others, it feels like there is no escape. (Unless we disconnect… but then face being left out!).

People can be cruel… but cruel people are not worthy of your attention

The ability to be cruel, cause hurt to others and bully has exploded throughout the evolution of social media. I see good people everyday being torn down by comments online. It’s horrible. However through trolling we have learned that both online and in real life we cannot tolerate people who are cruel, people who bring us down, strangers, as well as those we know, who believe it is ok to cause hurt with their words. As much as I wish no one has to ‘learn how to deal with trolls’, it has become part of our world. What counts is that we stand up to it and realise that trolls are not worthy of our attention.

We are stronger together

Finally, I believe that social media has made me realise that we truly are stronger together. We feel with others on the other side of the world. We can be a part of helping afflict change in areas where we used to feel helpless. We can be more informed, have a strong basis of knowledge, share because we care. Yes there is a lot of ‘fake news’ out there and so much nonsense but the more time we spend with social media as part of our lives the more we realise its worth, its power and its ability to help us do good.

Be the good, promote the good, share the good and all will be well.

Have you always had social media in your life?

What does social media enable you to do?

What has social media done to you, both positive and negative?5 top tips on a tuesday - chase the red grape

10 thoughts on “What has social media done to you? #5TTT

    • Jen says:

      The sound it used to make waiting for dial up to connect… ah the memories…
      And what happened to you guys during the election… that is exactly why we cannot underestimate the power social media actually has. Very scary.

  1. Cora says:

    Ho boy, what a massive topic, eh?

    All in all, I do not regret social media existing. Like you, technology has enabled me to connect much, much closer with friends and family than I ever would have been able to without. Not to mention, with people of the world that I don’t even know or have ever met. It can/has given us a much greater sense of community and “being in this together” within the world – a sense that we can all come together to stand up for something, or support each other. Of course, it can be abused. But I suppose any technology can and has been abused. Social media often aggravates, disgusts and annoys me – yes, hello comparison game and giving into jealousy – but it is in my control to figure this out and to unplug myself when I need to. I also do not like how it has given people an “easy way out” to say hurtful things etc. If we had to say it to someone’s face or, god forbid, actually PHONE someone, would people say as many things as they do!? ! would like to get to a place where I do not feel so dependent on it, or that I’m on my phone all the time – and I would really like to see this in more people and as a society as a whole – so this will be a continued challenge.
    Cora recently posted…The Realization That This Is How It Is: Getting Jacked up #2My Profile

    • Jen says:

      I think we just have to realise now that it is a big part of our everyday life. I’m sure it will get to the point where (and I think it should) kids will have lessons in school on how to disconnect, deal with trolls, the comparison games etc, otherwise we will have generations who don’t believe they can exist without their phone and the SM on it. The problem is our generation and above, how are we ever learning to be without it? As you said, a continued challenge but one I am willing to face.

  2. Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets says:

    As with anything, there are pros and cons to social media. Much like you, I love the way it keeps me connected with people. At the same time, I really dislike seeing how cruel people can be, especially in the comments on articles and links. In fact, I try my best to completely avoid the comments because it’s a rabbit hole of hate.
    Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets recently posted…The BurnhamMy Profile

    • Jen says:

      I always avoid comments on FB and Instagram… it always makes me so sad when I do read them and I cannot believe what I see half the time.
      So I will stick to the positives and use my SM for good! It’s all we can do.

  3. Miss Polkadot says:

    It’s honestly crazy to think how huge of a difference in just about every area of our lives social media has made. I actually just talked about this a bit with my family. Despite how much I use social media daily and the positive impacts its had on my life, I’m very glad it didn’t exist when I was born and growing up yet. Especially when I read about children being mobbed via Facebook or WhatsApp, see very young children glued to their parents’ – or worse: their own – iPads and all the other negative impacts.
    My sister is keeping my nephew from technology as best as she can and I’d do the same if I had children. You can obviously only manage that for so long in today’s society but we’ll see how his relationship with social media evolves with time. Who knows what will have changed unti then …
    Oh and what social media has enabled me to do? Connect with all of you from everywhere in the world which is amazing and also feeling less lonely. Not in that I didn’t have friends outside of social media but less lonely in the struggles we all go through but probably wouldn’t be as open to share in real life.
    Miss Polkadot recently posted…Good good links #198My Profile

    • Jen says:

      I too am so glad I grew up in a world without social media. Even in my teens when I had a mobile phone all I could do was call, text and play 2 black and white games on it… which soon got very boring.
      Technology will be a major part of every child from now on, that’s inevitable … but the actual relationship they have with it and how it affects the early stages of their life is definitely something that parents can have control over. You just have to do what you think is best.
      But that connection with so many wonderful people, that’s what makes it worth its weight in gold.

  4. Lynn says:

    Without WhatsApp, FB and Skype. I would find it so hard with my daughter being on the other side of the world. Something may pop into my head and I can send a WhatsApp or email.
    I have to remember the time difference. But watching for my son in laws blip each day if feel connected to them. X

    • Jen says:

      As much as there is so much negativity it’s also so easy to see all the positives. We just need to be a part of promoting the positive out there, something I know you are. x

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