REAL LIFE LESSONS FROM SOCIAL MEDIA

 REAL LIFE LESSONS FROM SOCIAL MEDIA

‘Social media has consumed our lives in recent years. In this article, we look at some lessons social media can teach us about real life.’
Social media has taken over our lives. Facebook today has 1.3 billion members, almost one-sixth of the world’s population. Twitter has 300 million users. Websites like Pinterest and Instagram are also on their way up. Most of the time, social media affects our lives in a positive way. It allows us to make and keep in touch with friends and family, trade messages, share images, and do many of the things in the matter of seconds what used to take days and weeks (probably months) before the proliferation of the internet.
However, more and more studies have begun to show up Facebook as a vehicle for time wasting. Also, a new term called ‘Facebook envy’ has begun to do the rounds these days, especially among younger users, where people come away from a spell of scrolling down their Facebook newsfeeds feeling rather empty about their lives.
Regardless, there are some lessons that we can take from Facebook and Twitter which will potentially make our lives better. Here is a list.
Like things openly. Positive energy is a good thing, so if you have something or someone that impresses you, don’t be afraid to like them in public. Often, we’re afraid to show admiration in public until someone else does it first. We’re often shy to let our inner opinions be known until someone else has. So if we can learn to be eager to like things in real life too, that will dispense a lot of positive aura around you.
Don’t dislike openly. Just like on Facebook, which does not have a ‘dislike’ button, keep your dislike to yourself. If possible, remove all traces of dislike from you mind as well. The old adage is to give praise in public and criticism in private. Another valuable piece of advice that has come down from the sages is that if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. This is particularly true with people who are not your closest friends.
Encourage comments. Just like you do on Facebook or on your blog, encourage an atmosphere of feedback about your personal and professional achievements. Listen to people whether you agree with them or not. Also, foster an environment of civil debate where ideas can be traded and debated with no bad blood.
Share. As they say, sharing is caring. In real life, we hoard what we like. If we can instead replicate our online ‘sharing behaviour’ and train ourselves to share things that we like immensely, we will not only be happier, but it makes it more likely for the recipients to share with others too. All the important things in life – like love, joy, service – become more abundant by the act of sharing. So whenever in doubt, share, give, distribute. And do it with a smile.

Gaurav Malhotra

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