Who’s Afraid of Social Media?

If you’re in your twenties and reading this, have a good laugh and expect to wonder what the heck I’m talking about.  Perhpas it might also explain some issues with your  parents or grandparents.

If you’re in your sixties and reading this, pour yourself a stiff drink (of your choice), take a seat, find your reading glasses and prepare to enter a new dimension.

I am of the latter grouping and am just learning social media.  After almost eight months pounding the keyboard and sliding my pointer finger up and down, I must admit that social media has changed my life both for better and for worse.

Some changes are great; some are terrible; some are growing less terrible.  Earlier this year, you might have heard me say that I would never do social media, that it was a waste of time and why would I want to exert myself in a useless endeavor.  Never say never!

Thanks to some good coaching, I have slowly, very slowly plowed my way through an extremely difficult learning curve. An old dog can learn new tricks but with a price.  I just completed a cycle where I could not sleep.  I was waking up at 2 or 3 in the morning and finally giving in to the tossing and turning in exchange for a cup of coffee. I truly believe that the screen images rolling by on both Facebook and Twitter along with the bright keyboard totally freaked out my brain for a while.  I seem now to be adjusting.  Early on, I was so confused that I could feel my heart start to pound and my blood pressure rise when I would sit in front of my iPad.  Now the process has become pretty routine, though I’m still assessing what good comes from Twitter.  It appears to me to be a game of you follow me and I’ll follow you and never shall we reap much benefit from anyone’s posts.  That’s not entirely true as I have met some nice people and read some very interesting articles.  However, there are still times when I understand nothing about a post and the code language used to write it.

Few of my posts on Twitter ever get noticed; occassionally someone will “favorite” my post or “retweet” it which is the desired effect but those are rarities.  I started with ZERO followers and now have 700, growing them organically as the jargon goes, never paying for followers.  In glacier fashion, I creep forward to build the envitable social platform.

Facebook is more warm and personal to me and even fun.  I like keeping up with friends, family, past employees, and schoolmates but fail to understand the need to post inane pieces of information sometimes.  I try to be very selective and search for quality content.

As an aspiring author, I am putting in many hours to learn to make social media work for me.  The results are not there just yet but hopefully about to break through in some signficant rush of notoriety.  Until that happens, I will plow away with the daily hours I’m spending in front of the iPad.

Yoga is a must if you pursue this beast.  You simply have to get up, walk away, stretch, bend, go out for a while or call a friend.  It can be a black hole but for me, it’s not as deep or as whirling as it was at the beginning.

I’m proud to have learned a great deal; I can walk the walk and talk the talk of the fast and furious now.  I have some self-pride in that and a dose of new confidence.  I feel “with it” and current in a sea of new technology.  Give it a try, if you dare.

Who’s afraid of social media?  Not I, said this 68-year old!

@LindaSpalla                        facebook.com/LindaSpallawriting