If you can’t handle deep thoughts today then stop reading because in this one I take on the blessing and the curse that is social media.
A lot of people I talk with mention how often and easily they go down the rabbit hole when on facebook or twitter only to look up and realize an hour (maybe more) has passed. Or that seeing all the cool and exciting things their friends post about makes them feel bad. Or the realization that they’ve just spent their most valuable resource (time) watching cat videos.
I too have experienced all of these.
Check out Prince Ea’s very interesting perspective on social media where his observations about our digital insanity include concern about the generation of media overstimulation and the pageantry of vanity. Gotta love his fantastic use of language!
In spite of the negatives, I absolutely love that social media has reconnected me with so many friends from my past and how easy it makes keeping up with friends and family spread across the world. Social media also allows me to know more about current events and breaking news (practically as it happens) and also to conveniently consume mass quantities of interesting information that is relevant to my life and work.
Further, research by my friend Stacie Furst Holloway and others finds that digital breaks during work do have value. Social media breaks 1) help workers balance work-family responsibilities and 2) provide for career and professional learning. Also, 3) after a digital break people report greater satisfaction.
Drawbacks of social media in the workplace include social media’s inherent lack of physical activity and the potential for cyberloafing.
I work from home, usually alone, and completely enjoy my digital breaks.
I have no conclusions to draw about this or recommendations to make. Just acknowledging here the powerful force that social media is. For me, it is both a positive and a negative – a black hole and light source.
Check out what I’ve written about love/hate relationships previously.
What do you think of social media? Share your thoughts in the comment section.