At Cultural Enterprise Office we are running workshops for those who are running and establishing a Fashion Business in Scotland on Social Media. The workshops are being delivered by Made Brave. I popped into the first one because politely I would like to say I am interested in its power and honestly I would say it its impact on my life scares me.
I am a generation x’er and I remember a time when they way to bring attention to something was a really good poster, a couple of thousand flyers and a list of journalists to send of a carefully crafted press release.
At the training, we were told that we had to be active on Social Media not passive. Just liking things, well — that way leads to pain. Over the last year I have been posting less on Facebook, trying to find a voice on Twitter and exploring lots of things on Instagram. My friend Neal says that either my Instagram is either all over the place or a work of genius. For the most part I have been passively reading others contributions and following links to what they feel is important. This has the combined impact of making me feel insecure, digitally impotent and powerless.
At the same time I have been reading ‘The Stress Report’ by those brilliant people at ‘The Do Lectures’ The Stress report asked a representative sample which Social Media platform scared them, the winner was facebook with 40% — ‘Too may feelings — overload’ 19% said twitter ‘So. Much. Stuff.’ and 8% said Instagram ‘A showcase of fun everyone else is having without you’. A recent survey in the guardian states that up to a third of the population have tried a digital detox. It seems I am not alone.
The stress report also had an article at the end about being like a lobster. When a Lobster needs a new shell it crawls under a rock so it is safe and sheds the shell to grow a new one. After this process of transformation it is able to remerge and continue to hunt and scavenge.
This felt like the best thing to read. It made me think you do not have to be ever present on Social Media, you do not need to be constantly there, and there are times — rightly when you need to crawl under a rock or duvet and re-emerge with a new skin and shell.
Over the weekend I started to delete everyone on facebook I do not know or remember and I changed my picture to me smiling with a beard and serial murderer glasses. I got 48 likes and 5 comments including one from my mum who said it was not the one of my best — but I felt better.