I ❤ Social Media, but…
I love that Social Media can be used to interact with people from all over the world. My initial attraction to social media platforms, especially Twitter, was the ability to find people from a variety of backgrounds and from all over the world to share ideas and possibilities with.
It doesn’t matter if I’m interested in talking technology and innovation, climate change and the environment, work or family life, politics or the economy, coffee or football, or just sharing some photography, I want to expose myself to everyone’s viewpoints and engage with people from all walks of life.
I enjoy discussing recent events and issues from around the world. There have been countless situations when an event halfway around the world has sparked conversations with people I would never have had the opportunity to engage with without social media.
I enjoy sharing my experiences, consuming information, and learning from the experiences of others. I’ve lost count of the number of people I have learned from on Social Media.
I want to understand the perspectives, experiences, and positions of many, many people and actively seek out people with differing positions and opinions.
I do lean one way or another on issues and find a lot of people who align with me; but, I often find many who do not.
This is an opportunity!
I cannot learn anything if I shut the door on other’s perspectives or experiences… I certainly don’t have all the answers; however, through civil discussions and an open mind, I can consider more than just my own circumstances and experiences before I form an opinion or position on a particular issue.
Lately, it seems, social media has become more of a forum with which to sling vitriol back and forth at each other rather than a platform from which we can share ideas.
It’s saddening to see social media used negatively even by our leaders and so-called role models.
Perhaps we need a reminder…
We can’t begin to imagine what it is like to walk in our neighbor’s shoes. It doesn’t matter if someone is next door, in a neighboring country, or halfway around the world, until we are patient enough to give them an opportunity to contribute to a discussion, to state their position, or simply express an opinion, and empathetic enough to seek to understand someone’s perspective, how much real discovery and learning can take place?
There is a skill that helps achieve this level of interaction…
L I S T E N I N G !