Yes, you read that correctly. This post is about the ways that social media (and blogging) HAVE made me better.
I know that we are constantly reminding ourselves (and being reminded by others) of the negative effects that an online presence can have on our well-being. And I would agree. But the key word in that last sentence is “can.” You guessed it: each of us have choices to make every time we pull out our phones or log onto our computers. Of course, I will be the first to admit that many times, my real-life and my internet-life are not properly balanced.
What should this look like?
I believe that it looks like being totally PRESENT in the moment.
I believe that it looks like being CONTENT with my life.
I believe that it looks like being an ENCOURAGING and UPLIFTING voice to the world.
And I believe that it looks like being TRUTHFUL.
Lately, I have taken certain days off from posting anything online, and on those days, I have only minimally perused the accounts that I follow. These have been some of the most relaxing and enjoyable days that I have had in a while because I wasn’t worried about “views,” “likes,” “follows,” etc.
During those days, the things that I cared about and focused on were from my real life. I believe that this balance should be attainable even on the days that I am using my online accounts, and hopefully, I am growing and improving in this. (And for good measure, I plan to continue to take many more breaks from social media in the future.)
But again, I would say that in several ways, social media HAS BEEN GOOD in my life. Let me explain…
- Connected me with others: It has allowed me to stay in touch with people that I otherwise might not often communicate with.
- Formed new friendships: I have been able to meet many other encouraging ladies who have poured into me – even though we have never met in person! (I love it when I am up in the middle of the night with my newborn and I can message another mommy who is in the same boat but in another country!)
- Improved my writing: It truly has honed my communication skills. Yes, I have much more to learn, but I have immensely enjoyed the challenge of starting a blog and continuing to add content to it on a weekly basis.
- Given me a hobby: Honestly, it is a ton of fun for me to write these posts!
- Provided encouragement: People (myself included) can be so encouraged by reading uplifting content. I know some individuals who use their social media accounts to affect so much good! And I have seen others that do not. I am striving to fall into the first category!
- Honed my photography skills: I take so many more photos, and since I’m not content with mediocre pictures, I end up with decent ones. (Although this is an area where I still have much room for improvement!)
- Helped me to process my thoughts: Until I started this blog, I had no idea that I processed information so well by writing. I have been able to internalize so many thoughts and truths by writing about them here.
- Taught me balance and priorities: Because social media has the propensity to cultivate things like comparison, jealousy, negativity, preoccupation, pride, etc. If I am to continue using it, then I have to learn to say “no” to these attitudes and “yes” to contentment, positivity, focus, humility, balance, and correct priorities. I have had many opportunities to practice these skills.
- Challenged me to be better: When I see things that other people are doing online, sometimes it challenges me to be better – to work out, to make healthy food choices, to take my kids outside, to start a DIY project, to redecorate my house, to try a new recipe, etc.
Please understand that I struggle from the same temptations associated with social media that every one does. But I am hoping that we can all find a healthy balance because good CAN come from using it appropriately!
What would you add to my list above?
Now please excuse me while I go snuggle my kiddos. Gotta keep my priorities in order!