I’ll admit it. I’m scared of social media. With every new social media network, I get a little more afraid. This doesn’t mean I’m not using social media, but I do have a mini freak-out every time I get a new [non-FB] notification. Why all this fear?
- I’ve been taught to be scared of strangers.
- It’s a major time suck, and I don’t need any help in finding distractions.
- I’m not cool enough.
1. I’m scared of strangers. As a kid, I was taught not to talk to strangers. They’re bad. They want to poison you with their candy. They want to kidnap you. It’s ingrained in my brain and it’s just carried over into my online behavior.
Facebook doesn’t scare me because I’ve limited it to people I know. But Twitter, Pinterest – those are the ones that frighten me a bit. I tried to stay off Pinterest for a very long time, but finally broke down when I decided to put together a board for website design inspiration. I really only meant for it to be just for me, but then people started repinning my pins. What was this? People were repinning my pins, liking my pins, following me…and I didn’t know a single one of these people. I got an email like this from Pinterest. This ended in 43 repins – it’s really not a lot, but for someone who expected/wanted nothing, it seemed like the world. Commence freak out.
Yes, this is the point of a social network. I’m getting used to it, and while I still do a little freak out when I see strangers following me on Twitter (not that there are many) or repinning my pins, I understand why it’s happening and how it can benefit my business.
2. It’s a time suck. Part of the reason I was trying to stay off Pinterest and Twitter was because the last thing I needed was another distraction. It turns out Twitter isn’t so bad for me, but Pinterest? So. many. pretty. pictures. It’s almost like sensory overload. So I imposed restrictions on myself. At most, I’m allowed two pins a day, but mostly I keep it to one. And I’m not allowed to spend more than 30 minutes a day playing on Pinterest.
3. I’m not cool enough. Really, I’m not. I’m not one of those trendy people who know about things before they’ve even happened. I’m not on the forefront of anything. I didn’t even join Facebook until 2007. So when I see all of the “cool” stuff that’s getting posted? I think, I can’t do that. Everyone would just ignore me! And what’s funny is, I kind of do get a bit ignored on Facebook, where all of my friends are. Probably because it’s just too big now and I feel like less people are actively using it (or so I tell myself). But on something like Pinterest, where I hardly know anyone, people are incredibly active.
So yes, social media scares me, but I’m starting to come to terms with it. It’s making me change the way I use the Internet, making me a bit more engaged, getting out of my comfort zone – and I can’t say that’s a bad thing.
And because everything is better with a photo, here’s one from a recent trip into Denver. Happy Friday!