Social Media: Life Behind the Glass Wall

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Social media can be a wonderful thing. As someone who uses it professionally myself, and on behalf of a number of clients it offers opportunities to reach out to people in ways you couldn’t manage effectively offline.

Social media is fabulous for raising awareness, for sharing local information and international news. Personally, I use social media as a sort of digital scrapbook, a way to record and revisit memories whenever I like, and for years to come.

I love seeing what’s going on in my community, sharing news with others, celebrating and when needed commiserating with them. The online world is also a place to gain support. I know people who for various reasons, for example, due to dealing with mental health issues, find themselves isolated. The online world offers aid to those who find themselves alone, scared and in a dark place at 2am and that is a great tool to have around.

Social media is a wonderful thing however, there is also a dark side. People find it perfectly acceptable to say things online, behind their glass wall, that they wouldn’t dream of saying face to face. I’m not talking about these infamous trolls either, I’m talking about people you see every day. I find this bemusing on one hand and incredibly sad on another.

I see people joining groups in order to moan. Don’t get me wrong, I can whine and moan and rant with the best of them and yet I sometimes find myself asking “when did social media replace our ability to act in real life if there’s change needed?”.

Used effectively social media can be a wonderful thing but sometimes I think we could all do with taking a step back, to pause before we post (for our own sakes) and to remember what social media is, to consider its limitations and its dangers. Being behind a glass wall offers a perception of power and that power can be misused sometimes. People on the internet exaggerate, they out and out lie, they victimise, they bully and they convince themselves that they are righteous, that they do have the right to say and do such things. Freedom of speech is a wonderful thing, if not used by a wannabe vigilante mob, or by those who have lost sight of how to deal with issues in person, preferring the keyboard warrior stance and the little thrill it offers.

We live in modern times and as such have access to the most wonderful modern technologies. Take advantage of them but follow your own tune, be true to who you are, protect yourself where necessary and enjoy it. Make sure that you don’t take what you see on social media sites as being automatically factual, check things out. Use the internet and social media sites as a set of useful tools, not as a weapon against someone else.

PS: Please don’t disagree with anything I’ve written here, in my little corner of the online world where I like to ramble on sometimes about the thoughts and ideas rattling around in my head. Having a different point of view to someone online is a no-go so don’t be tempted. The backlash can be appalling…. 😀 

Back to School

It’s very cliche, and no doubt there will be plenty of people complaining about the back to school photos but you know what? It’s my blog and I’ll cry  show my handsome boys off if I want to.

Kieran and Back to School

Back to school, Kieran

Today sees Kieran starting secondary school which in some ways seems ridiculous yet in others feels very right. He’s grown up very quickly in recent years and has become such a fab person to be around. I’m not just saying that because I’m his mum either. He’s confident and comfortable in his own skill, and tells me that he doesn’t need to try and be top dog or in the 1% of his year amongst the “cool” or sporty kids because, as he puts it, “I’m my own kind of cool and I like it that way”.
This young man will go far.

Back to School For Taylor

Year 2! Taylor started Year 2 this morning which means that he is in his last year of Infants, moving to Juniors next year. What an absolute delight he is. He’s clever, funny and more than a little bit cheeky. He loves puns and has a great vocabulary. He attends Helen O’Grady Drama Academy and it’s becoming very clear that whatever he does in life, he’ll do it with flair and no doubt a dollop of extra drama for good measure.

When you become a parent you look out for the milestones, the first tooth, word, the first steps and so on. As they grow older your children continue to evolve every day, sometimes in very subtle ways. It takes seeing one of them donning a tie and blazer for the first time or your youngest walking alongside a new Reception class child to see just how much they’ve grown and how far they’ve come.

Enjoy it, folks, because time most definitely does fly when you are having fun. It doesn’t seem two minutes ago that Taylor started school for example. I hope your little and not so little ones have had a good back to school experience. I’ll be very happy when half three comes around.

back to school, Kieran and Taylor

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