Truly an interesting saying is, “I don’t care what people think.” I’ve found that to be one of the biggest understatements ever. However, people use that narrative often. I know I have. And a part of me doesn’t care, yet there is another part that does. People say they don’t care what someone thinks of them, but I would wager to say that they do care. Very much actually, as they should.
Did you know the bible says that our reputation among men is important?
A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. Proverbs 22:1
If the Lord says it’s important, then that seals it for me.
In my younger days, I did and said whatever I wanted and dared anyone to come at me. I had that type of mentality. Many have that same way of thinking today. Thankfully, my mind was renewed by the word of God.
I wanted to test this theory of, “I don’t care,” by examining how we approach our social media accounts.
Hence the name:
Post and Delete
A common theme among the celebrities who use social media is posting their thoughts, especially on twitter and afterward deleting and apologizing. Why is that? Well for one, they are human beings, who have real thoughts and opinions. Initially they may have spoken their true feelings, but right after, what creeps in? I would dare to imply that public perception of what they just wrote crept in. Backlash crept in.
Being honest and genuine is not widely accepted as you may think. People do love their ears tickled. When it comes to celebrities, we the people want them to play their roles. However, those roles have to become stifling to them. They have to be under extreme pressure because they aren’t living their truth. They have to stay in a “role,” or “character.” We see glimpse of their true selves in those unhinged moments when the wall comes down and they post a real thought. Someone screenshots it immediately, and it’s there circulating forever, even after said post was deleted. (Photo by Bence Boros on Unsplash) In many cases they are applauded by the public for their opinion. It doesn’t always hurt them.
Public perception is a reality and more true than the actual truth. Public relations is very much needed for this reason.Your words and the way you’re viewed could make or break your reputation.
What does this mean for you and I?
How does this play into the average person’s life? The average person with a regular 9 to 5 can lose their job or the camaraderie of their fellow coworkers, by what they post. It’s our reality. Conversations that were usually had in the privacy of our homes, are now out in the open. Politicians are taken down from a social media post. Those with businesses have to be a bit more careful of perception. It could make or break you. Offense is major these days.
How often have you drafted a post, via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, only to read it and delete it?
I have. I know that I’ve been angry and drafted a post and then I had to sit back and tell myself to take it off. We have a natural inclination to vent. Social media makes it easy for us to do so, but what’s needed is self control and thinking first. Pause in that moment of anger or frustration with life. Don’t hit send right away. Read it and read it again. Think, “Should I post this?” and “What is the purpose of my post?”
I am not trying to stifle anyone from speaking their truth. By all means do you and be yourself. I am saying use caution on social media, because once it’s posted, it is there forever, deleted or not. I know that there are people who watch others and save their posts as soon as it’s shared. Just like people do with the celebrities posts. So even after it’s deleted, they have a copy. Not to mention, many hit “share,” on your Facebook post as soon as you put it out there, so even if you hit delete, it’s still there.
Yes, by all means, be yourself. I want you to. It’s liberating. Just know that everyone may not understand where you are coming from. That’s ok too. What we post does alter what someone thinks of us. I’ve read things and have been surprised negatively and positively by people. It’s like, “Oh I didn’t know you was like that. Or felt that way” That sort of thing.
Keep in mind your audience when you are posting and your purpose. Some things don’t need to be said in the public arena. There are ball players, actors and singers who, just like us, want to get a point across, but there is someone instantly there to discredit them. Or to say that they have offended someone and an all out media attack ensures. Is it fair? Many times absolutely not, but it’s the world we live in.
The average person does not have the same responsibility of someone holding a political office, or someone with a huge influence in society. They are held to higher standards than the average joe.
Have you ever posted and deleted? If so, why? That is the main question. Why did you do it? You don’t care what others think right? So why delete it? It’s because you do care. If you have any conscious at all, you care.
These social media platforms have given us a voice. People who don’t speak normally are speaking behind comments. Some would say they are cowards because they wouldn’t say the same thing to someone personally. This may very well be true. The term, “twitter fingers,” means someone is tough behind their keyboard but not in person.
Be yourself. Find your voice. Once you find your voice, your audience will find you.
I don’t post and delete often, but I have in the past. I’ve actually posted, waited and kept thinking about the post. That is a sure way to know that it needs to go. LOL. I had no rest. So I would go and delete it. But by that time, it was already seen by many. Now I think before I write. Even if it’s a rant or vent. I think about it and word it carefully to get my meaning across. I still must be me.
In the past I have been known to rant and rave with no filter because that is how I talked. That was ok in my world and I didn’t need permission nor did I care how it was received. I do care now. I’ve matured. I understand that it’s irresponsible of me to talk out of the side of my neck, so to speak, just because I feel like it. Some things, I need to take to God, my husband, friends or even my journal. There are people who follow me and care what I have to say. I have come to realize that I am influential in many lives, I also have a family, and I do not want to steer any of them wrong based on a fleeting moment. All of this should be taken into account depending on your vocation.
Journaling is a great way to blow off steam and gather your thoughts. If you use an online journal then I would expect to see unfiltered views about whatever you desire. On my blog I write open and honest to you guys. What comes out of me is what is in me.
The bible says at Matthew 15:11 It’s not what goes into your mouth that defiles you; you are defiled by the words that come out of your mouth.”
What’s in you will come out.
Everyone has an opinion nowadays. The internet makes it easy to share it with little repercussion for the average person. But know this:
Your mouth can get you in trouble.
You can get fired from a job or lose an important contract because of your public posted opinion. You can also make a living from being outrageously open. Make sure you are aware of who you are, and who your audience is. Speak your truth. Be tactful. In today’s society you will be shut down for perceived disrespect or prejudices. I say, “perceived” because it’s all up to perception not what’s true. That’s the world we live in. Other’s opinions about what we say matters. Whether we want them to or not.
Case in point, Tina Campbell from Mary Mary, came out publicly stating that she was a Trump supporter and that she voted for him. She has shown herself to be a blunt woman and very open, so on the one hand it was no surprise that she shared this. In the past, she has shared the most intimate details of her marriage and marital problems which was received well. In fact, it was a major reason that I like her. I loved her music and her realness, yet when she said what she said about Trump, it gave me pause. My immediate response was, “That was something she should have kept to herself.” Why? Because of public opinion and perception. Trump is disliked among many, especially in the black community. It was shocking to the black community especially her supporters, and she has had to postpone her tour allegedly due to low ticket sales and support. This is my point. This is the backlash I was speaking about.
It can hurt your pockets, and your fan base.
Yes you have the right to say whatever you want. First amendment and all. I agree. I also agree that you must be tactful depending on the position you hold in society and your area of influence. Think of your motives. It does not mean you’re being fake. It means you’re being mature and smart.
I remember scrolling through Twitter and seeing a post my daughter wrote and immediately contacted her to take it down. Some things you just don’t post. I had to give her this lesson. You may feel some way in a particular moment but then that moment passes and yet those words are there forever. Think about it first.
What if there was no delete button? Oh boy, people would get in tons of trouble.
Have you posted and deleted? Why or why not? and what did you learn about yourself in that moment? Share in the comments.