When someone talks to people over social media, it is not going to be the same as talking to them in person. It could be said that this is pretty obvious, and that it is not something that needs to be pointed out.
What this primarily comes down to is that one is going to be using a device to talk to people. Through being in front of a screen, the people they are talking to could be miles away from them.
As a result of this, they will have to connect with people by writing, sharing videos and uploading pictures, amongst other things. Thus, even though this is going to be different to having face-to-face interactions with people, they are not going to be short of ways to get their point across.
In fact, one could find that it is far easier for them to express themselves online that is for them to do so offline. One can also take their time when it comes to what they say, and this can allow them to say the right thing.
No Holding Back
The kinds of things they talk about to their ‘friends’ online could be the same as what they say to them offline. However, there is the chance that they will find it easier to open up when they are in front of a screen.
Therefore, if it wasn’t for social media, they could have the tendency to hold everything in. This is not going to be good for their wellbeing, and it could cause them to feel cut-off from others.
This could be something that will surprise a lot of people; especially if they have come to believe that social media encourages loneliness. But while this outlook can sound accurate, it is clearly not this black and white.
If anything, social media can stop people from feeling isolated from others, and this can only be a good thing. So, regardless of whether one doesn’t have many friends or has friends but doesn’t feel comfortable talking about certain things, using social media can have a positive effect on them.
A Time and A Place
Still, the kind of conversations that one has online are not going to replace face-to-face- interactions; in the same way that supplements are not going to replace real food. It is then going to be vital for them to make sure they take the time to interact with real people.
Once again, this could be seen as something that is clear, but that doesn’t mean that it is not something that can end up being overlooked from time to time. Due to how easy it is to get hooked into social media, one could end up spending more time on there than they spend with real people.
At the end of the day, it all comes down to having the right balance, and what is right for one person wont necessary be right for another. For one thing, some people need more stimulation than others, and so they will need to spend more time around others.
Along with this, one could be going through a challenging time and this could make them want to spend more time by themselves. Going online can then be more appealing than spending time around others.
A Number of Similarities
But while taking to people over social media is not the same as taking to them in person, it would be inaccurate to say that it is completely different. One could still have the need to behave in the same way as they do in the real world.
They could also feel the need to say the right thing, and to make sure that they don’t offend anyone. Based on how they respond, it could be said that it is as if they are surrounded by real people.
Freedom of Expression
Naturally, there are going to be some people who say whatever they want online and don’t care about what other people think. This could mean that they are like this in the real world, or it might not.
But for the people who are hesitant when it comes to sharing their views, social media can be somewhere where they are unable to be themselves. In the same way that they can have the need to keep themselves in line in the real world, the same thing can take place online.
One thing that could take place is that one could end up going along with what other people say. Out of their need to fit in, it could cause them to cast their own views to one side, or they might not even take the time to develop their own views.
What other people say online could be accepted and internalised, and it is then not going to matter how true it is. The part of them that is only interested in their survival is going to be in control.
A Number of Different Consequences
This means that the part of them that has the desire to find out what is true and what isn’t is going to be offline. At times, this might not have much of an effect on how they perceive life.
For example, if someone was to say that a certain man/woman is the most attractive person on the planet and one was to just agree with them, it is unlikely to lead to a negative outcome. On the other hand, this is not going to be the case if one was to have the same approach when it comes choosing a presidential candidate, for instance.
Through being aware of how easy it is to go along with what other people think, it can give one the chance to take a step back. If they were to speak up when they disagreed with something, it could cause them to be attacked.
Ultimately, it doesn’t matter whether one keeps their views to themselves or speaks up; what matters is that they dont allow themselves to blindly accept other people’s views. As just because a lot people think something is true or accurate, it doesn’t mean that this is the case.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.