It’s true that cyber-bullies and trolls are taking the lives of many too soon. We shake our heads at the “Like” generation who are fuelled by the desire for more “likes” and “followers.” But is social media really the big bad wolf that it is made out to be?
Six years ago I lived in a world free from social media. Okay, that’s not quite true. I had signed up for Facebook and couldn’t quite understand why people kept writing sentences about what they were doing at that moment. As if anyone else cared?
Well, apparently they did. They cared to the tune of billions.
To a home without social media I brought twin babies home. I was alone with these babies all day. Some days a kind word or comment from a stranger at the shops would be the only conversation I encountered. I was lonelyyyyyyyyyy.
You could argue that if I had social media I would be feeling envious of staged selfies of other mums and their seemingly perfect bundles of joy. You could also flip that big old coin and safely state that perhaps I could have found a friend, group or hashtag that really supported me.
As a huge tech avoider I spent a lot of my life being a cynical bitch. I didn’t want to embrace the brave new world of apps and iPads.
Yet, somehow I managed to forge a career as a blogger and forced myself to realise the possibility and potential of social media to effect positive change.
I discovered the best bits of social media and I’m going to share them with you, ready?
- Facebook Groups – There are groups for just about everything out there. Just type in your hobby or obsession into the FB groups to uncover your new gang.
- Insta Hashtags – There are challenges to improve your body, health and style on Insta. My favourite hashies are all of the style variety. Of course, if you join Champagne Cartel’s #ccladylove hashtag promoting friendship among women, you can win yourself some sweet prizes right now. Bonus!
- #Everydaystyle by @stylingyou, it’s full of everyday women, sharing their everyday outfits.
- #RediscoverYourWardrobe with @Ilovethatskirt challenges participants to rediscover the joy of forgotten items.
- #RealMumStyle (yep, this is my own creation) A hangout for mums to share their real-life outfits. The good, the bad and the picked up from the pile on the floor.
- Giveaways, Discounts and Deals – No need to wait for Junk Mail day to source all the bargains. Social media provides us a steady stream of discounts and deals on the daily. I have found out about some super secret warehouse sales through the liking and sharing power of Facebook and Instagram.
Of course social media has some down sides. Most notably the Pinterest vortex where normal people believe they are just one tutorial away from living the perfect life.
My big tip for social media sanity: Treat social media like a party. Have a great time meeting new people, share what you love and know when it’s time to get the hell out of there and head for home.