John Lennon once voiced in a song “everybody’s talking and no one says a word”. That was 30 years ago – way before social media. Nowadays it seems like everyone is talking – everywhere – a constant electronic pipeline into our lives. But with all this talking I wonder sometimes if anybody is really being heard. And isn’t that the point – to be heard?
I admit I’m guilty of the same thing. The very fact that I write a blog adds to the cyber babble. To be honest I really do it for myself. It helps me focus my thoughts. Sometimes what I write is not meant for anyone other than myself or maybe a close friend. Other times, I put it out there when I feel I have something to share. And every once in a while I say something that resonates with someone “out there” and a connection is made. And that can be a powerful thing.
That’s the appeal of social media – to connect with others. A basic human need. Ironically sometimes we spend so much time in the cyber world “connecting” we become more insular in the process. And when we do spend face-to-face time with others – many of us are multitasking plugged into whatever portable devices we have at the time. In other words not totally “there”.
These days I try to manage the time I spend on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, YouTube and so on. It can be a real time suck if you’re not careful about managing your time. I go online with the social media sites 2 or 3 times a day and I give myself time limits when I do. It’s all about maintaining a balance.
Ultimately all this talking we do on social media platforms is not good or bad – it’s not that black and white. I’ve made some incredible connections through social media. I’ve also reconnected with people I’ve lost track of over the years. I’ve promoted my business utilizing social media and gotten work from people I wouldn’t have connected with otherwise. But I’ll always prefer a real connection with people – outside the cyber world. I think most people do – that’s just being human.