If you want something you have never had, you must be willing to do something you have never done. – Thomas Jefferson
I peppered my husband with questions:
- “What is the difference between a friend and a follower?”
- “What is a like versus and tag?”
- “What is a page versus a profile?”
- “What is the cost of this level of connectivity?”
- “What is the point?”
Talking about social media brings out the worst in me and I finally understand why. My husband has been preaching the benefits for years but I always fought back with a high need for clarity and understanding.
I have learned something this week. It is not possible to understand some things fully. Some things require a certain level of acceptance for the unknown and social media is one of those things. Even the experts haven’t been able to give me a straight answer because there isn’t one answer. Technology is moving so quickly that when I think I have grasped it, it is no longer true. What I have learned is that it is precisely when I am on this uncomfortable edge of my comfort zone, it is time to jump.
There is no way to fully understand the vastness of the social media sea, so I jump.
Only then will its potential reveal itself to me. Only then will I know what is possible.
- I hope I have the strength to remember, as I navigate this daunting realm, that words like follower, invitation, connection, and friend mean something profound to me.
- I hope I have the strength to remember that nothing is more important than presence and to the extent that social media enhances presence it is helpful.
- I hope I have the strength to remember that every time I connect on-line or in person, my children are watching and learning about what matters most and there is only a short window where they are a captive audience.
- I hope I have the strength to remember that living a deliberate life may sometimes mean not connecting on-line in order to stay true to the moment.
- I hope to have the strength to remember that FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram and All are tools to facilitate connection. They are not a replacement or escape from looking up and having the courage to be with those that matter most, even if it means being alone with my thoughts.
- I hope to have the strength to remember to appreciate that these very platforms are supporting my ability to live the life of my dreams from any corner of the globe and that in itself inspires awe in me.
- I hope to have the strength to remember to embrace this maze of social media without getting lost, or losing myself.
Am I overthinking this leap? I heard recently that the average person spends the equivalent of four years of their life looking down at a device. If I had four years left to live, it would be naive to say I would never rely on technology, but it is safe to say, I would rely on it a lot less. It seems like something that deserves reflection.
People are thinking about this aspect of our new reality. Ironically, this piece about putting down our devices, has been shared on Facebook over three million times . . .
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