Hello everyone. My apologies for often being incommunicado over portions of the last two weeks. Obviously COVID is challenging when looking after two people with dementia. But over the last couple of weeks my phone’s also been malfunctioning, which has in turn impacted my schedule.
That was a blessing in disguise in that I was forced to focus on the things that generate the most good for all of you, which is actual sessions, the blog posts, and the CBC column. Those are also the things I enjoy the most, so that works out well for all of us.
But between those duties and my parents, things got to the point where it was difficult to maintain social media. That was where the potential blessing was exposed. So while it does appear the phone is (almost?) always working again, the short break did beg the question: what is the real value of social media?
It obviously does have value, but more and more people are increasingly questioning how much value. Many people here, and particularly past clients, have made it clear that you both read this blog and use the social media posts to help maintain your own awareness, and to continue your growth by ensuring you are practising what you’ve learned. That is a good thing.
At the same time, due to the very personal nature of the issues I discuss, I also know most of you are lurkers who rarely comment publicly. This makes determining the real value of the page, and my dedication of time and energy to it, difficult to calculate.
I must also consider the opportunity cost. If I did less social media, it would provide me more time to work on a podcast, or on videos. But what is the value of those things compared to the value the social media brings? Would you like to see a podcast or videos? I have both in the works.
If I stopped posting articles, videos and memes on facebook, and instead they were delivered as a weekly listing in a blog format, would that be more desirable? Would you rather have a single catalogued listing of weekly items, or do you like the periodic and unexpected happenstance of facebook? Or would you like to see changes in how I approach the facebook page to allow it to be even more useful to you?
We’ve certainly all seen social media descend into meaningless noise. But it’s important to remember that a lot of connection, discovery and learning can be done through thoughtful comments on social media. But that only happens if people share ideas.
I realize sharing opinions is easier to do with external things like politics or social movements, than about internal things like our fears, peccadilloes or descriptions of our destructive behaviour. But is there room in the middle?
As I weigh my role here, and how facebook and twitter help or hinder my personal and professional life, and my goals for helping all of you, I also want to include what value you take from it.
Some of you have already let your voices be heard. But I am interested in this being useful to as many of you as possible, so I am interested in the views of all of you, as you are best informed as to what you value, and what you benefit from.
To that end, whether it’s in private or public, please do feel free to write or call or comment about which formats and approaches you would find most beneficial. Thank you.
A serious childhood brain injury lead Scott to spend his entire life meditating on the concepts of thought, consciousness, reality and identity. It made others as strange to him as he was to them. When he realized people were confused by their own over-thinking, Scott began teaching others to understand reality. He is currently CBC Radio Active’s Wellness Columnist, as well as a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, AB where he still finds it strange to write about himself in the third person.