Oh Social Media! You love it, hate it, or just don't care. It’s a free forum of millions of opinions and personalities you would not normally come into contact with in your everyday life. It's a way to make connections and relationships, or a way to lose them.
Everyone has a different view of how it is used and viewed. Therefore, there are no basic rules since weekly it seems to change based on what new program comes out or disappears and depending on your age range, you probably only use two to three specific platforms regularly.
Social media is a whole new arena to learn and navigate. It's a part of my children's everyday life as they are growing up. They know the terms: tweeting, favoriting, commenting, liking, sharing, posting, editing, chatting, and deleting as everyday words! All these words are related to them connecting with friends, family, and "gaming friends" (the people you only communicate with when you are in a virtual world, like Minecraft or a "clan").
When I was in high school, we had no way to communicate with friends except by written letter (called pen pals!) or hard line phones (the phone with a cord that is attached to a wall). The worst my parents had to worry about was what the neighbors thought and who I was speaking to on the phone that was attached to the wall in the middle of the kitchen. It had a cord so long that I would have to uncurl it so I could stretch it across the kitchen to my bedroom for some privacy! So the phrase "don't talk to strangers" literally meant don’t “talk" to strangers.
As I navigate this new media with 3 kids, I am very grateful to have a daughter who is "an old soul" and who is so responsible about perception and forethought. She is aware that there are people at the other end of that keyboard, even though she cannot see them or literally hear them.
She has asked me many times after reading a post, "Don’t they realize there is another person at the other end reading this who has feelings? I always am aware what I put out there."
She can explain her thought process to me on how she handles social media issues i.e. Tweets, etc. and she gets it. If she doesn't understand why someone would post something, we talk about it, until she can see the writer’s possible point of view, and she still wonders if that person realizes what they just said. Or if she posts something I don't approve of, which has only happened once, then we talk about it and I make sure she understands the perception others could take. It then gets fixed.
In my last two years of growing, changing, a marriage ending, friendships changing and/or ending, and looking for answers whether the outcome was painful or happy. I turned to social media as a regular connection when daily personal connections were limited. The most prominent ones in my life have been Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.
During that time as I viewed the posts by others I personally felt the pain and witnessed a friend’s pain, just over a picture of a new friendship.
I have felt pain simply by seeing a word of tenderness between two others.
I have changed my view of someone based off of a post and/or a picture.
I have lost long time friends over a new friend request accepted.
Some of these are definitely related to the pain of a relationship ending and the repercussion from that, but I have also seen some of the same feelings occur in others lives on Facebook. They have posted their distaste for their "friends" comments and unfriended them.
I have seen many posts related to "mass unfriending" due to painful comments etc.
I have read conversations that get heated between “friends” and “strangers”.
Social media can be an easy place to throw insults and people may not realize (or maybe they do) the power of their words.
Tweeting is another area that can have a simple lack of forethought; from tweeting pictures that can hurt others or offend them to retweeting private/personal comments. Now again, many people use it for business, but there does seem to be a very gray area between personal and business because each person has their own idea, or lack of, how it should be handled.
Social Media has many uses and if we can remember a few key things it can be very beneficial:
-Be respectful to yourself in what you put out in the world. Have dignity.
-Don't hide behind a keyboard saying anything you would not say directly to someone’s face.
-Anything you do can be found forever on the internet.
-Remember, you may feel strongly about something now, but later in life you may not, so be aware of what you post.
-Just because this is a new public outlet, does not mean you need to use it or use it for every little thing you would not tell your neighbor or a complete stranger.
-Words are powerful; we have an obligation to leave this recorded history as something that can benefit others and not bring pain.
We are all different, that is the way it was meant to be. No progress can be made if we were all alike.
The purpose of this world and life on earth is to learn. To learn how to work with other personalities that are challenging to yours. That is the way we get stronger and raise up our collective positive energy level (more commonly referred to as our vibration level).
Responsibility is a part of life and throughout your life you will teach others and lead by example. By choosing your words carefully you show that you are aware of others, respect others, and have respect for yourself. Putting positive messages and positivity in general in the world, in whatever way you can, will benefit you and in turn sends a ripple out that affects others.
Be proud of the being you are. Your determination and strength here at this time is historic. No one knows how long they have, use the time wisely and be proud of the positive mark you leave on this planet and in the lives of others. Everyone has good to contribute to our collective.
Much Love and Responsibility.
Many people go through life with their routines of daily prayer, meditating, or making life happen on their own. At some point in life though, some challenges become so difficult, it’s hard just to function. You could feel like your prayers go unanswered and just question all the choices in life you have made. Certain days are better than others and with time, you manage to work through it. Along the way you read new things and try new tools with hopes that they will give you a new outlook.
Within the last few years, when I was at a difficult point in life, there were many days I was just going through the motions of life. I felt I could not make any major life changes and had to get my mind in a good place, so I could function. I was guided to Affirmations, little sayings that put me in control of changing how I thought about something, as a tool to help me move forward. They gave me a sense of feeling confident that I was making positive changes, by starting with how I thought about my situation.
Affirmations are different from prayers in the sense that you are stating your belief to the universe.
Prayer is when we ask God to intervene or we express our gratitude; so slightly different, but both in the same category of expression and having belief.
Words are more powerful than we realize when going through the daily routine. They affect the mind and influence how we perceive ourselves and aspects of our life. If you have ever felt pain from someone’s words, then you know the value of them. The ego uses words against us daily to convince our minds of certain things that will mentally drag us down, like eating when depressed, talking yourself out of exercising, cussing a lot, constantly starting your conversations off with everything that is wrong in your life, or always pointing out the negatives in a situation. These words, in the form of thoughts, can even cause physical repercussions- from the habits of thinking you need coffee and sodas regularly, eating fried foods, eating fast food constantly, and using excessive amounts of sugar.
On the other hand, words when used properly, can motivate, cause change, and create joy. By saying Affirmations, words have helped me to adjust my mind so I could change my routine, break unhealthy habits, release anger, forgive, find joy, and my personal favorite- find emotional stability… that is priceless!
By stating a simple line each day, such as:
“I expect great things today, tomorrow, and the rest of the week.”
“I find joy in my daily routine.”
“I am deserving of money.”
“I can do everything I set my mind to.”
“I live in the present moment by being grateful for all of my life experiences as a child.”
“I have access to unlimited assistance. My strength comes from my connection to my Source of being.”
“I have the ability to accomplish any task I set my mind to with ease and comfort.”
You are sending the belief and declaration out into the universe. Eventually, you notice that your belief in what you are saying gets stronger and you see that the universe responds by building your life up around you to reinforce those words.
~Things will start to flow easier.
~You begin to see things from a new perspective.
~You find a sense of calm among the storms of life.
~You notice changes happening around you that are for the best of everyone involved.
I recently read a book that I recommend if you are new to the concept. You Can Create An Exceptional Life by Louise Hay and Cheryl Richardson. This is a candid conversation going through the daily life of Louise Hay, one of the first leaders in the self help movement and founder of Hay House Publishing. Cheryl and Louise walk through situations in Louise's daily life that show you how simple affirmations, said daily, can help show the reader how changing your perspective makes all the difference.
When life needs a change; when a habit needs to be broken; when life just gets the best of you and just getting through the day is a challenge and you’re not sure how to get started, the simplest beginning is to talk yourself into re-believing in yourself. As you continue to say the affirmations daily, you will see peace, change, and a confidence that seems to feel like life is back on track.
You can create your own affirmations, or there are many pre written ones out there to help you get started.
Dr. Wayne Dyer has several books dedicated to affirmations, one is Excuses Begone! He also has a free app for your smart phone that has a simple card set that tackles life’s challenges right at your fingertips.
Hay House is a publisher of many books using positive tools, such as the You Can Create An Exceptional Life and www.healyourlife.com
Richard A. Luck is a Life Coach who gives you 50 free affirmations just for signing up for his newsletter at www.richardaluck.com.
Life is made up of many different experiences and there are many ways of getting through the tough times. You must find what works for you. In a time of so much access to information, it is very likely that someone has been where you are and can pass on some wisdom.
Affirmations are just one tool to help during those times when you need a boost and to help you maintain a positive path. By starting small and using positive words, you can keep the ego in its place and not let raw emotions lead life, then peace can be found as you remind yourself of the amazing being you are, smart, loving, and capable.
Try new things, change old habits, keep your mind open to possibilities. Life and its challenges do work to help you experience new things and find new ways of living. Change is inevitable and constant. Enjoy the ride.
Much Love and Affirmations.