Friday, July 27, 2012

What others think of us


It seems to me that much of the popularity with (a)social networking sites exists because we care so much about what others think.  Some of us are obsessed with "proving ourselves" to the rest of the world.  There is a drive in humanity to be the best, brightest and strongest.  In many large families siblings compete over almost every aspect of life.  Oftentimes the sibling that ends up going to the furthest is looked at with intense jealousy.  I see siblings competing well into adult life, and sometimes up until death.  Now with internet sites like Facebook and Twitter, it's easy to show the family who is number 1.  But I ask: If you are spending time proving yourself on Facebook, are you truly living a glorious life?

Perhaps there is something to be said about backing off and learning to not care about what others think of us.  Is it good for our self esteem to constantly have to prove ourselves to the world?  Of course, to many of us it feels good to show off our greatest accomplishments.  Sometimes I feel the urge to share something I did with my family or friends, and using a site like Facebook would make that a lot easier.  But then I remember the Facebook noise and how my accomplishments would be drowned out in everything else, from Farmville stats to personality tests.  I also realize that my accomplishments mean the most to me, and while I can be proud of them, there is no point on boasting. 

Facebook Detox - Two Friends Talking About Facebook (video)



Why do we care so much about what other people think of us?  Is it hard for people to be happy reveling in their own accomplishments without the need to share them?  Perhaps it is, as we are naturally social creatures.  Our accomplishments are celebrated with our true friends, and feeling good about them, and getting recognition for them helps us to want to accomplish more.  If a child was raised doing well in something, and his parents never recognized that thing, there is a chance the child would stop developing the talent (of course, this is not always the case).  That being said, there is something to be said about sharing that which we accomplish.

Sharing our accomplishments among family and close friends is one thing, but sharing every small movement we make via (a)social networking sites like Facebook is another thing.  Further, it is said that being humble is a virtue.  Perhaps it is one that is somewhat lost in the modern Facebook and text-enabled world.  It is almost expected that if we take a step, we share it.  On Twitter, people will share every small thought they conjure up like it's Einstienian.  On Facebook, if a person makes his way to the restroom, it is seen as an Olympic feat.  Humanity has become addicted to sharing every small breath with the rest of the world!  There is little left of humbleness Is there something wrong with not telling the world about every accomplishment one makes?

In life there is a fine balance to almost everything.  If a person is to tell the world of every small thing they do, chances are the big accomplishments will not be looked on as what they are, big accomplishments.  On the other side of the coin, if a person tells the world only about their biggest accomplishments, oftentimes those accomplishments may seem greater.  Of course, one could argue that the person who does not advertise their every move to the world will be forgotten.  I have noticed with my family that the people who are on Facebook the most are the ones who are talked about the most.  This may be because the members of my family are incredibly vocal in their Facebook careers (I call it that because some of them do not work, but instead spend their working hours on Facebook).  Those who are not on Facebook are, in comparison, rarely spoken of.  However, I value my privacy too much to have my family follow my every move on Facebook.  Of course, there was once a time I was pretty vocal on the site, but I did not care for having an internet leash on, and realized that I was saying too much about my life.

If you decide to make the move off of Facebook, or have already done so, you may find that it is very hard to not feel the urge to post your accomplishments for the world.  That being said, you must purge the urge and realize that even if you do not share each accomplishment of the world, they are nonetheless accomplishments.  I would recommend keeping a journal or goal book in which you keep track of your accomplishments and follow up on them with higher level accomplishments.  You do not need to share every move you make to the world.  You do not need to wear an internet leash to be a valued member of society or a member of your own family.  Your true friends will still be there to celebrate with.  There are many other ways to share your life with others, and Facebook is a very poor excuse of a way in which to be social.  Purge the urge to Tweet about walking to the mailbox, and purge the urge to post on Facebook that you ate Flounder at Skippers. 

10 comments:

  1. I loved the video! Very true...

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    1. I will probably make more videos in the future. I'm glad you liked it!

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    2. More videos, please!!!! Love these! Insightful and funny! :)

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  2. I had "friends" who thought that being on Facebook was the only way to stay in touch. It bummed me out at first, but I learned to realize that it was something I would have to live with not being on Facebook.

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  3. I have to wonder...is there something to the fact that so many doctors, judges, and people who work hard or a lot do NOT use facebook? lol. Goes to show when you're actually out accomplishing something there's little time for facebook

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  4. I just discovered the internets this year when I bought myself an apple this year and started bloggering. I haven't joined Facebooklet yet and I really think I ought to avoid it! I am very old, elderly you see and FAcebooklet is probably for the young kids? I visited that sight and saw a whole lot of things there that didnt' make sense to this old broad!

    Yours in the Love of Christ,
    Mrs. Walter J. Katsellas, Jr.

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  5. This is clearly produced by someone who is highly socially insecure. in addition, Your arguments are faulty, and quite simply amateurish; highly ignorant I must say. A 10 year old of the modern era has better arguments.

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    1. I tend to disagree. While my arguments may not be on par with some of the things you may have read in a college level philosophy text, the truth is, many are addicted to Facebook. Further, you honestly think that it is perfectly alright for people to be obsessed about sharing their food choices and every movement with the rest of the world? You think that it is productive to spend hours a day on a site which rewards a person psychologically for focusing solely on them self? If that is the case, you are free to log on and enjoy posting whatever it is you feel the need to share with the world, and you also remain free to share with the rest of the world the all-importance of your choice for breakfast, the time of your last bowel movement, and what color suits your personality. As for the rest of us, we will try to find something more productive to do with our time.

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    2. "Last bowel movement" haha! I don't miss FB at all! :)

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  6. I couldn't agree more. Growing up, my older sister was highly smart and talented (still is and I am very proud of her). Me being the youngest, I was compared and looked down upon all my life. My self-esteem suffered, I was experiencing depression, stress, and I didn't know what my talents where or thought they were not good enough. People to me, I couldn't amount up to my sister and I had big shoes to fill. Um, what about having my own shoes to fill? Was I not good enough? As I got older, Facebook made it even worse. I deactivated my account often at the time to find myself and ran way from negative people. I now, know what my talents are and don't care what others think, all because I took a break off FB. That time spent on FB, I used to work on my relationship with God and myself. FB has done nothing but damage my life. Also, working at an office job years ago and looking on FB made me feel stagnant and depressed. I also used that time off FB to find a better career. A career that is right for ME and not what others thought I should be. I am grateful for this experience.

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