GETTING BACK TO MORE THAN 140 CHARACTERS AND AVATARS ….

10 Jun

FotoFlexer_Photo

These days everyone is all about social media, branding yourself, trying to be a bigger name than the next person, and trying to show that they can have more followers than anyone else. It’s all about 140 characters, tweets, status updates, posts, emails and texts. We tend to see each other more these days by a tiny square default photo on a web page rather than up close and personal and that’s so ass backwards from how it should be. Yes, social media is awesome, I personally love it but at times I personally hate it. It takes the real connection out of life. Are you connected? Yes, but are you REALLY connected to your friends and family? When’s the last time you spent time with one of your social media friends offline? When’s the last time you picked up a phone for a real conversation instead of picking up your phone and sending a message? We should be spending the hours we spend on social media thinking of ways to connect with people personally, not just via text characters and then making those connections happen. Social media is such a warped place, some people are awesome while some people simply use it to be rude and express opinions in a way they’d never do to someone in person because they’re “anonymous” online, they’re “untouchable” online. Be touchable, don’t be anonymous, don’t be just an avatar to someone and don’t let them just be 140 characters or less to you. People are so much more important than a digital communication. We thrive through real contact, hearing each other’s voices, holding hands, spending time together. We already have a following that we tend to pay less and less attention to, those who are offline and there for you anytime you need that connection. Don’t put those who are really there on the backburner. The longer someone sits in your background, the sooner you’ll look up and notice that your background isn’t how you remember it and they will either take themselves out of the picture or they will slowly fade away with time. Your picture will eventually change and when you spend less and less time focusing on it, the quicker it changes. You don’t need a million people to tell you how awesome you are and think you’re the best thing ever, you only need the small handful that actually mean it and are the ones that would come to your side when you’re not so wonderful. It’s easy to build an online persona that isn’t a factual representation of who you are and people get to know who you want them to think it’s who you are. How about using that time and energy to reconnect with your life offline, with those who love you for who you really are and don’t have a picture built up in their heads of who they think you are, to re-energize yourself by taking a deep breath away from the keyboard, to enjoy who and what’s around you?

Social media is a great way to “meet” people and in many cases, a great way to make friends for life that you do eventually connect with offline, just don’t forget those who were here long before Twitter, Facebook and even Myspace. Don’t let your background fade. There are people in your life that you choose to connect with and keep in your circle for a reason, you find them interesting, there’s something in them that you see as special and that you want to get to know better. Take that time, get to know them better, find out what makes them special. They keep you for the same reasons. Build your relationships offline and don’t spend so much time away from them that they start to dissolve and disappear. It’s fine to be on social media, to build your “brand”, and to spend your time working, just don’t let it become your life and don’t find that your main circle no longer exists outside of a digital connection. Live your life in more than text, more than numbers and more than avatars. Get back to the basics of building relationships and doing what it takes to maintain them.

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