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Lora Hogan > Uncategorized  > Facebook: Why post?

Facebook: Why post?

How many likes does it take to get to be really liked on Facebook?

Recently, I have been struggling with social media.

Facebook, in particular.

I have had it for a decade. I will continue to have it until facebook morphs into something new and is no longer a primary means of communication.

But I haven’t been able to place what is wrong with facebook for me.

Then it clicked.

Boasting, Pride, Jealousy, Self-Promotion. 

That’s why so many people use facebook.

Attention.

We live in a society where everyone craves attention. We are riddled with insecurity.  Which only worsens for many due to facebook.

People use facebook:

  • To show off what they are doing (because you are not there and they are!)
  • To prove something
  • To brag about an accomplishment
  • To complain about something to either a) get agreement or b) have people bolster them in reply and say “oh no, you’re really great” or xyz or c) to cause a tizzy on facebook and 
  • To prove that they’re boyfriend/husband/job/house/friends/whatever are “the best ever” and poor you that you aren’t that lucky to be them

I am guilty of doing things like this with facebook.  In the past month I have:

  • Changed my cover photo to show off all the girlfriends who came out to celebrate my birthday with me (I meant to do it to express my love and gratitude for such good friends; but could see how someone else could see it as I am showing off that I had a great time with girlfriends and they felt excluded etc…)
  • Changed my profile photo from a yoga photo to one with an old friend
  • Complained about my loud neighbor
  • Posted a photo with a friend at the ballet
  • Posted a photo montage of my parents house in snow (beautiful, but I used it to express my worry that I wouldn’t make it to Georgia)
  • Thanked everyone for birthday wishes genuinely
  • Talked about celebrating my birthday with friends
  • Shared my decade of facebook video (2004-present summed up by facebook’s algorithm)
  • Posted about my weather being a high of 73 while everyone else had snow storms (and said that I was jealous that I couldn’t make a snowman)
  • Complained about burning my eyeball on facebook

And I am not that super regular facebook user who posts every day.

But I would say that at least half of my facebook posts never needed to be posted. At least half were done with less than loving purposes.  I had complained, I had to post SEVERAL things about my birthday party. I wanted to spread news about the party so as to not hurt peoples feelings, but that backfired and also mean that I was being needy, I was saying “guess what guess what guess what? Did you know? It’s my birthday!” That’s not cool.

The complaints did me NO good. They did not need to be posted. I should not have posted them. I posted them to try and a) be funny and b) comment on something and c)because I wanted someone to go “oh Lora that sucks!”  You shouldn’t require that and it isn’t me being as good of a person as I can be.

And I down-right was BRAGGING about how wonderful the weather is in Florida compared to the rest of the world. Bragging = not cool. It means I’m trying to make others feel jealous of me. I can’t deny it, that’s what I did! EEP!

In looking back, here is what I think was relevant to post:

  • Photos of me with old old friends (without the need to brag about being at the ballet…) My family and many friends use facebook to keep in touch and I know my Mom especially loves to see photos of my life this way.
  • Genuine thank you for the birthday wishes. I had so many people wish me happy birthday on facebook. I tried to personally respond to each one, but had no choice but to send a general message to make sure I included everyone and let them know that I truly was grateful for so much friendly love and affection.
  • I could have posted my parents house in the snow as in “LOOK it’s pretty!” If that was all I had posted and wanted nothing in return, it would have been fine…Instead I tried to make a snarky comment about whether or not I would get to GA for my trip. Which was both a complaint and an accidental bragging about me going out of town for a trip/general proclamation that I was traveling/came off as insecure.

Really, I need to cut out more than half of my regular facebook posts. And I like to think that I am more conscious, more aware, more considerate, and more loving than the average facebook user.

What do I think this means?

It means that, as a culture, we have become immersed in the ME.  We spend so much focus on the individual, on ourselves. We want people to notice us, to celebrate our accomplishments, to laugh, to complain, to redeem us.

We should not need facebook to love us.

But facebook has become a goldmine of fear, insecurities, pride, boasting, self-promotion, and to seek approval from others.

I’m not saying that facebook is evil or that we shouldn’t use it.

I just ask you this:

What do you hope to accomplish from your facebook post?

If your post is to show off, to brag, to complain, to gossip, to promote yourself…Pause before you hit “post.”

How can we better use facebook to show love and kindness to our friends? 

I don’t have the answer to this, but I say LEAD by example.  Maybe it will catch on?

What do you think of facebook and how we use it? What is the right amount? How should we govern our posts?

I leave you with this quote from the bible. Can you imagine if we took this passage and applied it to our use of facebook? How would that transform our interactions with others–and our interaction with ourselves? 

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. [5] It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. [6] Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. [7] It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” 

Comments:

  • Stacey Merrill

    February 23, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    Totally hear you. Personally can’t stand FB & avoided it as long as possible. Got on a few years ago as Etsy artists were all doing it & bugging me to join. Now I use it to share with my family (seems all the elderly relatives, obscure cousins etc who I fail to write to are up there & they like seeing photos etc.). I have more than once deleted some complaint or other rubbish I’ve written before hitting send (but not as many as I should have I am sure. I think it is good to ask “is this something I’d want to read?”

  • Jennifer Pug Pug

    February 23, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    Definite food for thought. I kind of enjoy FB. I love being able to see what’s going on in the lives of people I don’t get to see/talk to regularly, and I even kind of like seeing some of the crazy come out on other people’s posts. I definitely try not to brag or overshare. I tend to post funny things my kid said, pics of my awesome pugs, some things about running (but usually just when I’m at races with friends) and just amusing things from my life. I do loathe when people use social media to just complain and complain and complain. It’s toxic and exhausting and I end up thinking much less of those people.