When was the last time you took a break from social media? I think it’s an essential part of self-care, especially now when the rhetoric can get so incredibly crass, even hurtful. While it’s true that words formed against us are only as powerful at we allow them to be, the truth is, words do have power.
We see that power come to life every day online and via the social media sites we interact with on our smartphones and tablets, laptops and desktops. Over the past year or so, I’ve become increasingly alarmed by how social media discourse has changed. Lately it’s morphed from a forum for lively and informed discussions and debates to a space where public shaming and derogatory remarks–the nastier the better–often dominate conversations.
It’s particularly troubling when these “digital drivebys” aim for the jugular. The mean-spirited ways some of us talk to and about one another in cyberspace, often judging first and asking questions (maybe) later, is not only offensive but also gives license to others to join the “party” and pile on.
I’m sure we can all recall a snarky tweet, comment, meme or shade-throwing post that had us in stitches. But when that teasing leads to tearing down one another, hiding behind hashtags and anonymous handles, spewing virtual venom without any thought to how it’s affecting the people on the receiving end, it can all be way too much. And it doesn’t have to be directed at us personally to take its toll.
As this tumultous month winds down, I invite you to take a digital detox. Use the time to surround yourself with positive vibes, energy, inspiration and images. Together, I believe if we dial down the amount of animosity and negativity we digest on the daily, we can provide ourselves with some much needed balance. Namaste.