I’ve made fun of selfies and the self-absorbed who take them here before. Of late I’ve been thinking about the positives that come from all this sharing, the insights I’ve gotten about people I know as I skin the shares and likes and photos.
Anyone who makes an effort to post something online, has some level of passion about the material. It matters. For some, it’s true, their passion is themselves, their children or their views — this too becomes apparent rather quickly — it’s the reason the block feature was invented.
These poor souls will never understand that the comings and goings of their lives aren’t of interest to the rest of us. In truth, usually social media isn’t your first clue that this person may be a tad self-absorbed.
For the rest of us, what you choose to share tells those you share it with a lot about you and your inner workings — what you believe in, what you think is funny, what makes you mad or sad. People need to think about this before they hit that submit button — do you want the world to know this about you?
From one of my favorite sources, NextDraft, there’s this about oversharing. We’ve heard about the thefts of credit card data from big retailers, but really you need to be cautious about anything you share online. Know that lenders, employers and colleges are checking your social media data to decide your worthiness.
Being a Scorpio you can see I think a lot about privacy, and what is best kept to oneself. Sometimes sharing online makes me feel very exposed, makes me censor myself with the thought of these words being read aloud to my parents at the Thanksgiving table.
Political views are a perfect (but far from the only) example of an area that you need to watch — you may offend (unintentionally it’s hoped) those you know or work for; future events might have you regretting linking your name so closely to another cause or party.
As for the readers of all this material… we learn things we may have forgotten, or never knew, about the people in our lives. This information has value. It helps us build on the relationship, opens us up to new ideas, lets us express differences in a more respectful way. Sometimes we can type what can’t be said.
That level of intimacy wasn’t so close at hand in my day and it may well be the unexpected bright spot to all this social sharing.
P.S. There is a way to remove yourself from the internet, should you be so inclined.