I can be a bit of a perfectionist with a constant fear of judgement. I’m not going to psychoanalyze myself to try to understand where this fear comes from but instead I’m trying to find a way to overcome it because I’m starting to see how silly it can be in some instances especially as I delve deeper into the world of social media.
Let’s look at some of the social media platforms and my personal concerns
Instagram isn’t bad because it’s usually just a quick “Thanks” or maybe describing where the picture was taken, no big deal I can handle that without pouring over it too much. I do have trouble commenting on other people’s photos but I’m working to overcome that by making myself comment on at least one per day.
Facebook I struggle to comment on the statuses or posts of people I haven’t seen since high school or was never super close to in the first place but I also try to make myself do that more often. If someone posts something and I have an opinion or comment I put it out there then sometimes fret over what they might be thinking about it.
The other day a girl I went to high school with posted a pic of a waterfall and I wanted to know more about where it was at so I could check it out. I knew she lived close to our hometown plus she does lots of hiking so I wouldn’t mind chatting with her some about hiking places in the area. I finally commented and ended up learning about an area close to me plus another further north, as well as learning she lived down here growing up so she knows spots in this area.
Overall, a positive interaction, not scary maybe I’ll have to try it more often.
The wonderful world of blogging where interactions help us to continue to thrive. When I first started someone would comment and I would panic. “What do I say?” “Who is this person?” I waited an appropriate amount of time (usually at least 30 minutes, don’t want to seem too eager) then cautiously wrote the words “Thanks! 🙂 ” and waited to see what would happen.
I wish this was an exaggeration. I’m better now especially with the people I interact with frequently.
Sometimes I hold myself back from commenting because I’m so afraid of saying something stupid or silly but it’s such an irrational fear because I’ve never (knock on wood) had any negative interactions online so I don’t know why my comment complimenting the author and maybe inviting them to check out something of mine would incite rage on their part. I was inspired to write about this topic the other day when I read a blog post I really enjoyed and had written a post that related but I never want to seem too pushy or self-promoting but I really wanted to express my enjoyment of their writing and share my experience.
Isn’t that a large part of what the blogging community is about? Enjoying the work of others, expressing that enjoyment, and sharing your own work.
I hesitated, watching the cursor blink in the window, and finally typed out some words then read them twice, three times, then spent 10 minutes debating whether or not to link back to my content before finally deciding to do it. The amazing part is I survived with no hatred or rage from the blogger but a like and a comment on my post.
When I write about some of my struggles with this it seems silly but in my mind it’s a legitimate concern. I know the concern stems from how easily the written word can be misconstrued.
Will they know I’m joking?
Will they understand what I’m trying to say?
Does a smiley face actually lighten the tone of what I said?
I try to keep my life as drama free as possible so I don’t want to say something to spark an internet feud, nothing worse than having an argument through a keyboard. The other side is the part of me that wants to be liked and doesn’t want someone to think what I said was dumb or annoying.
I’m definitely getting better about it, spending less time reading and re-reading every word I write to someone in a comment. I still spell check and read through a couple times but I do less of the waiting because I don’t want to seem too eager to reply or not commenting because I’m afraid of how my own thoughts will sound to another person. I have to remind myself as a blogger I love comments so I assume other bloggers also like comments, maybe some don’t, but I enjoy the feedback and interaction.
As I mention in the beginning, I’m working on overcoming this weird social media social anxiety. I think most people feel safer behind the keyboard but I sometimes feel more vulnerable. People can still judge you but each time I find myself stressing out over typing the words “Great pics” on Facebook or writing a comment to a fellow blogger explaining why I enjo reading their words I ask, “What’s the worst that could happen?” They either like your comment, reply to your comment, or do nothing.
Now that I’ve read this through 10 times, tweaking and editing it’s time to share. I’d love to hear your thoughts. Does anyone else struggle with anxiety about online interactions?