Why social media is not my friend

Very rarely, but sometimes, I get messages like these…

“It’s digusting what you’ve just written”

But mostly and often (luckily) I get messages like these…

“You’ve inspired me” and “Thank you for what you’ve written”. (Thank you to everyone who messaged me about my abusive blog post – I will get back to you all eventually – there’s been so many!! xx)

The truth is when you’re a blogger and you write exactly what’s on your mind, then you’re going to get comments whether it’s good or bad. Thankfully for every negative, I get at least thirteen positives.

Despite what I write about or how I feel, some people will always disagree.

I have no problem with people voicing their opinions. They don’t have to like what I’ve written. That’s what blogging is all about.

I put my opinion out there to invite other opinions to flow in. 

It got me thinking that social media is known for its amazing communication tools and although it helps to promote what I am saying, it doesn’t always help me to communicate how I am saying it. This may simply be because people can’t hear my tone of voice, nor can they see my body language. They see it for what it is; regardless of what they think about me.

The reason why I’ve written this blog post is because I wrote a status on my personal facebook the other day regarding my Daily Mail article. 

  

I stupidly wrote something that was of course in jest. It was along the lines of “Totes famous now” *Slaps head to my desk* Of course I was only joking. I just didn’t think how it might have been interpreted until a girl, who I used to go to primary school with, messaged me saying that I wasn’t highlighting my blog in a positive way. I re-read what I wrote and I nearly died. How could I have been so stupid? I was mortified. She had a point. I was making myself look like a total idiot. Most importantly it was taking away the focus of my blog and the reasons why I had written it. Quickly I deleted it and thanked her.

I guess what I thought I wrote was funny (in my head) was probably not that funny for some. Especially to those who don’t know me that well. Of course those who do know me, would have read it in my silly tone of voice and would have known I was only joking.

It got me thinking that we all have to be so careful with what we say online. It can be misread in so many ways. Whatever you write may entertain some but it could also offend others too.

It’s so easy to hide behind technology and write how we feel/think, that it’s so easy to get caught in the moment.

The other day I texted a friend and she instantly replied asking why I was “off” with her. Confused I called her – she said my sentences were short and that I wasn’t using my usual smiley emojis! The truth is I was absolutely fine – I was just out running. Honestly try running and texting at the same time – unbelievable! 

We live in a society where we are all connected yet we are still so far apart.

Technology is amazing for many things but it is faltering our social capabilities.

Social media is used to share our opinions and sometimes these opinions can be rather hurtful. Social media is  known for its high rate of bullying. 95% of UK teens have been abused over social media, especially Facebook. This has led many people to take their own lives, simply because someone felt powerful telling them exactly what they thought online.

I had an email the other day from a girl called Louise* asking to give her advise on blogging and that she was too scared about what other people would think of her. The only advice I can give to others like Louise, is to write from the heart and ignore the hurtful comments. It sounds cheesy but that way you’ll never get bored of writing and also you won’t be fazed by idiots. Obviously you should always try to listen to constructive criticism as it will help you bloom.

What’s important is that you should always do what you want to do regardless of what other people might think. What I’d probably say to anyone who wants to blog or who uses social media as much as I do, is to be careful what you put out there. Obviously I couldn’t care less what the majority of people think of me, but when I do something as silly as posting a thoughtless status – it really doesn’t win myself any favours.

At the end of the day you need to be your own PR manager and as my friend Ellen said, “Unless you want to be the next Katie Hopkins, when you write you must re-read it, as if it’s not you who has written it.”     The same goes for our social media posts too!

I’ll always speak my mind and I’m grateful that my blog receives a lot of positive attention. I only write about what I think and feel. It’s my opinion. Some agree and find me funny and some don’t. I won’t however condone bullying. Unless you have a valid point or an opinion – then I’m all ears.

I’m going to make it my mission this year to not use social media so “loosely”. I need to be more sensitive with what I write, as the last thing I want to do is upset anybody. I guess it’s always best to keep in mind that anybody could be reading your stuff, whether it’s your boss, your mother-in-law or your neighbour. Someone, somewhere, could be reading your thoughts and painting an image of you from your own words.

 *Prays David Gandy reads my blog* 

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