I remember when I was 16 years old and my best friend introduced me to Myspace. I was instantly hooked. I took millions of kissy face selfies to get the perfect profile picture. I even tried my hand at the basic HTML and CSS to get my background to look awesome. Little did I know that all this obsessing would one day pay off.
My love of social media landed me in a lot of cool classes in college and I've worked in a couple of social media content creation, moderation and coordinator positions. Needless to say, I'm really into social media.
Because I'm a social media junkie I spend a lot of time on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (my faves). I love that I can enjoy social media from a business or personal perspective. While, I believe that content is king from a business standpoint, personally I know that nothing effects your life more than who you follow.
Social media is great because it lets us into other peoples' lives and build relationships that we never could have had otherwise, but this comes with a price. Sometimes we don't need or want to be present for every thought that crosses people's minds.
People are more willing to post their thoughts and opinions, especially on controversial topics, when they're online. I know I'm super guilty of this! But what we don't realize when we're posting these opinions is that it can hurt someone on the other side of the computer.
Letting these opinions into our lives can really impact our thoughts and feelings. I noticed that I started to see a lot of posts bashing things I deeply believed in and every time I read or participated in that post a feeling of anger or contention would wash over me. I was short with my husband and just had a black cloud hanging over me.
Once I realized what was happening, I hit unfollow. That black cloud vanished instantly and I was able to scroll through my feeds without feeling angry or annoyed. I was less likely to snap at my husband and wanted to spend time doing things that uplifted me and everyone around me.
I definitely believe that there is a time and a place to debate ideas and listen to other people's opinions, but I don't think that I need to, literally, carry those opinions around with me.
If your feed starts to become toxic don't keep carrying it around. It's OK to unfriend or unfollow someone who isn't brining joy into your life, no matter who it is.