Lately I’ve been seeing articles about how some people find personal status updates on Facebook and other social media depressing. Apparently people put on their best “faces” so their lives seem better than yours.
Most of these articles aren’t written from a Christian perspective, so they ignore the fact that most of us ask for prayer through social media. Truly, this is a way to be genuine and to be supported and edified.
But what about those times when we don’t need prayer because of a major life crisis? My hope is — that’s most of the time!
So when there’s no crisis or drama, should we be depressed by other people’s blissful lives? I admit I’m a happy and grateful person but even on my worst day, I don’t find Facebook depressing. Why? Because I look at Facebook as a social gathering. Well, actually, a party.
Now, if you met me for the first time at a party and I was being totally honest, I might say, “Hi! I’m Tamela. I’m sure I’ll be glad I came to this party after it’s over but right now I’d really rather be home watching television with my husband. Wow, these heels felt really awesome in the store but now that I’m standing here, I realize the strap rubs my toes. I think I forgot to put a Band-Aid in my purse. Why don’t they ever have enough chairs at these things? I also hope I remembered to throw a tube of lipstick in my purse to freshen up after eating. Wish I hadn’t taken an egg roll. It’s cold and not as good as it looked. And it’s messy. Oh well. I don’t have lipstick on my teeth, do I? Oh, and how are you? And who are you? And why are you slowly backing away? Hello?”
Even if these were my thoughts, I’d be likely to say, “Hi! I’m Tamela. Tell me about yourself.”
Likewise, don’t you present yourself at your best on social media? After all, we all want people to know our best selves and most of us only let a few people see every dimension of our lives. To expect more from Facebook isn’t realistic. And probably not even healthy.
If you are finding Facebook and other social media to be too depressing, or perhaps just too overwhelming, take a break from the overall experience. In fact, you’ll be on trend, because lots of people are doing the same. But DO keep promoting your books, and DO keep in touch with your true friends, both on and off the Internet. Consider setting up a business page just for promotion, and a private Facebook loop for real friends. Or just call or email them individually.
Then when you’re ready to come back, enjoy the party!
Do you find social media overwhelming? Or do you think it’s fun?
Have you ever taken a break from social media? What happened?
What is your favorite social media platform?
What are some tips you can share to keep social media under control for yourself?