I confess. I love social media. I mean, it’s a party 24×7.
Where else can I log in and see what my family is up to with pictures?
Read about my college friends or catch up with my old Miami church family?
Obtain instant pictures of the His Royal Highness Prince George Alexander Louis? Yes, I have royal baby fever.
As an author, I can dialog with readers about all kinds of things: from books to televisions shows to favorite baby names.
I love being able to respond to a post about one of my books or future books.
I’m a social media super hero!
The downside is my phone hardly ever rings!
As a product of the ’60s and ’70s, the phone was a major component in the house. I can still hear my mom wondering, “Will that thing ever stop ringing?”
While I love social media, I’d not want to date in this texting-email-iPhone-Facebook-Twitter-Instagram world.
Used to be if the boy didn’t call, a girl excused him with, “Our line must have been busy.” Or, “His sister must have been on the phone all night.” Or even he lost your phone number.
But now, oh now, one can log onto Facebook and see that crush-boy just uploaded a picture from his iPhone showing he’s out with his friends instead of calling you! Or see another girl post that she was just hanging out with him.
My heart hurts just imagining it.
But social media is a power house tool for tweeting or Facebooking book news, scriptures, thoughts, news, and pictures of homemade cookies.
I’m not sure we’ve explored the vastness of the social media ocean yet.
If you’re not a fan of social media, realize that you can control how much time you spend online. You can control who views your page or tweets.
But don’t shut out your friends and family because you’re skeptical. Give it a go.
Recently my favorite spin instructor announced she and her husband were moving to Colorado.
My heart! I think I’m going to have to find a new sport!
“Susan,” I said. “Now you really have to get on Facebook!”
She might be 1500 miles away, but I’ll be able to keep up with her new life thanks to… social media.
If nothing else, there are some GREAT giveaways on social media. All you need is a Twitter or Facebook account to play.
As a worship leader, I can find the melody and lyrics to any song on YouTube. There’s no excuse to learn and lead a song “wrong” anymore.
Back in the ’80s, remember? From church to church, worship leader to worship leader you could sing Lord I Lift Your Name On High ten different ways.
But now, with instant, downloadable music and YouTube, there’s no excuse for not knowing a song as it was recorded.
Social media has brought us the ability to look up, research, know things instantly.
There’s no excuse NOT to know the facts of the economy, or the belief system of our president and government leaders, or the truth about salt in our diet.
Yet social media has made us lazy.
We’ve gathered in tribes and well, we stick to them. We don’t follow people, for the most part, who have radically different world views.
So it’s easy to think every one thinks and feels like we do.
It’s easy to get a bunch of wrong information! Oy! Again, laziness or busyness keeps us from searching for truth, ideas or other facts.
That’s the challenge of social media.
To make it a powerful tool in our arsenal. To use it to gain information not to just merely laugh at stupid pictures and sayings.
It shouldn’t replace face-to-face interaction either. We need to be involved personally in our local communities and families.
Pick up the phone now and then, call someone. Don’t text or Facebook, call.
Write a handwritten note.
But harness the power of communication.
What about you? What are the strengths and weaknesses of social media in your life?
Rachel Hauck attended the Romance Writers of America conference last weekend where she was nominated for the coveted RITA Award. She did not win.
Her latest release Once Upon A Prince hit #5 on Amazon’s Kindle list.
Her book Sweet Caroline is going for $1.99 on the Kindle right now!