Social media through a positive lens

Do you also really love sharing memes? Have you found it easy to virtually communicate with family and friends recently? Why do we enjoy posting pics of us travelling?

How often do we focus on the benefits that we derive from social media? Okay maybe a few of you addicts have those ready for argument’s sake, but I mean it from a place of inspiration, guidance and service.

I’ve been asked to write an alternative view to my older post about social media. I’ll discuss how we’re able to stay connected, being a source of inspiration, finding motivation, using creative outlets, learning to surf the web and understanding two sides of a story.

Let’s dive into some healthy perspectives and learn how to face the digital tsunami we’re inevitably experiencing.

Staying connected

The lock down has shown us what a monumental resource technology has been, especially connecting through social media. We’re able to stay in touch with our friends and family from all over the world, doing so now more than ever before.

Video calling friends and family can be incredibly healing, especially when you can’t travel to see them. I think we have a lot to be grateful for, especially the fact that we’re not dealing with the 1918 pandemic. Imagine if the only way to communicate with the rest of the world was through pigeons?

Shutterstock

I do hope that your communication extends further than liking and commenting on posts, as that isn’t really ‘connecting’.

Being a source of inspiration

We have an incredible ability to influence people on social media. Why not utilize this to help other people? If you ever feel like you’d want to serve a cause greater than yourself, it’s now easier than ever before to do just that.

Social media enables us to post about aspects of our lives that could benefit other people. Sharing your exercise regime, your daily habits, the recipes for your Insta-worthy food, your studying routine, your poetry, your philosophy, how you deal with your mental health and so much more, can all greatly encourage people.

There are various ways for us to make the most of our time spent on social media, we just have to be conscious of the energy and content we upload / expose ourselves to.

So long as we’re intentional about why we do what we do, we can all contribute positively.

Creative outlet

As mentioned above regarding sources of inspiration, social media can be used as a creative outlet. It allows people to make a living off sharing their art and what truly matters to them. Remember that art isn’t restricted to a specific genre like drawing. It’s about finding a way to express yourself and allowing people to connect with you in a unique way.

This has also enabled us to work from home and keep going with ‘business as usual’. Being in lock-down has been an incredible source of creativity for many people, as we’ve finally made time to focus more on what matters.

It has also enabled people to start thinking genuinely about what they want to achieve in their life. We’re not limited to 9-5 jobs in an office desk anymore. We have the world at our very fingertips.

Finding motivation

When things get overwhelming and difficult, we can search for ways to stay motivated. There are so many people who upload content specifically to encourage people, to keep them going, to help them stay on track. If you’re ever feeling a little overwhelmed, learn about how others deal with that same feeling.

Sharing our stories and accomplishments can allow us to be a source of motivation to others. When you see other people overcoming hurdles, it empowers you to keep trying. When you see that you’re not alone in this, it helps you feel related to.

This all depends on how well you’re able to work the algorithms and keep your feed in check. We need to learn about exposing ourselves to relevant content.

Learning how to surf the internet

For us to adequately deal with waves of change, we need to learn how to surf. The internet is just a bunch of web-pages that represent gnarly waves. We have to make sure we tread the waters carefully, by studying and actively seeking ways to understand it.

Here’s a great YouTube series to help you with that:

There’s a lot of chaos and misinformation amongst the memes and selfies. We need to become aware of how fake news also tends to go viral; spreading corruption in a different form.

We need to find a balance. The very same resources that we use to empower ourselves, can be used against us. The quality of our relationships, our attention span, the subconscious and even childhood development are all being heavily influenced by the presence of social media and technology.

Two sides of a story

How often have you found yourself defending a story after hearing only 1 side of it? You trust that person or source, therefore, believe them entirely without doing your own research.

We need to understand that social media, like all media platforms, feed off engagement. When people post offensive or contradictory statements, it gains traction and starts trending. We all hop on the bandwagon and join in, further fueling engagement.

So my point here is that we’re barely able to hear two sides of a story IRL, imagine how much tougher it is on social media? We just need to be intentional and a little more conscious of how we’re allowing the technology to seep into every aspect of our lives.

A wise man once said: “Stay woke.”

Regardless of what your stance is, you need to become adept at navigating digital information.

We can find resources to stay motivated and use ourselves to inspire others. We can unleash our creativity in incredible ways and share it with the world around us. There’s so much that we have to be thankful for, especially how we’re able to stay connected using social media.

It’s just as important to stay aware of the influence social media has on us. We need to put in a little effort to understand the navigation, so that we don’t drown in information. There’s much more to it than the click-bait or headline.

I’d like to thank you for your time and support, it always means a great deal to me. We’re all in this together, so we should always share whatever beneficial knowledge we have. I’m going to end this by repeating the quote I used in my previous post on social media.

“We don’t have a choice on whether we do social media, the question is how well we do it.”

Erik Qualman

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