By Bronwyn Ison

Do you “like” it or not?  Do you participate in social media or have a teenager who does?  Regardless, Facebook, Instagram and Tweeting are the craze.  Each of these platforms exudes positivity as well as negativity.  Thus, what is social media doing for you personally?  How are you choosing to use your social media ~ Business, pleasure or both?  It is important to ask yourself… what are you or your teens gaining out of social media?

When I have expressed to my daughters that I received my first cell phone at 25-years-old it astonishes them.  Today we see adults and pre-teens manipulating their iPhones and engaging with this electronic device more than they are connecting with humans.  Sad but this is truth.  My first phone is antiquated compared to our current devices.  The world is at our fingertips.  This is positive and negative.

Most of us are on social media.  Whether business or pleasure you are involved because you are entertained and keeping up to date by what your friends and others are posting.  Plus, you enjoy posting and sharing with your friends what is germane in your life at the present time.  Facebook can be an exceptional tool for business or detrimental to your personal life.  Yet, you have complete control on what you decide to post.

This is for your teen or you… Research tells us the more “LIKES” we receive the better we feel about ourselves.  Yes, this is what it has come to.  Face it, when you post a new profile picture that portrays the best you, you want to know if others LIKE you too?  There isn’t anything wrong with this I am simply stating a fact.  But, let’s take a peek at the flip side.  What if not as many people “LIKED” your photo?  How does this make you feel?  Do you feel less “LIKED”, not as important, attractive or desirable?  This is where social media gets tricky.  You are putting your best foot forward for the world to see.  Hence, looking for acceptance.  Of course, each of us wants and desires to be liked.  We become perplexed when we become dependent upon the validation.  Be cognizant and be able to separate yourself from feeling as though the LIKES make you worthy.

We may be connecting in our social media worlds, but are we bonding with others outside of the electronic world?  Consider your intrapersonal relationships.  Are they genuine or are they superficial?  Are you connecting with the people around you?  Are you spending more time engaging in social media than your personal relationships?  For some this may be easier because it requires less effort.  Plus, you can jettison somebody in your social world much easier than you can in person.  Hence, this is less personal.

Partaking in social media should be done responsibly.  If handled with care you should anticipate a positive outcome.  Also, don’t let your social media world impose on true relationships.  The true connection materializes when you are face-to-face with a person and not by the simple click of a button.

Bronwyn Ison is the owner of Evolve Yoga.  (760)564-YOGA