The Life We Lived Before Social Media

fa623c60cfc9feb55826839afc2f60c0.jpgThe times have changed in how we interact with others on a daily basis. If you grew up before social media escalated and became increasingly popular, you’ll remember how interactions were far different to how they are now. We used the telephone at home to talk to friends, we would go next door to play with the neighbours kids and sometimes even talk to people we might not know. There is more online noise and information that we’re consuming. There is speed in communication, but value in conversation is the most important thing, no matter how convenient it is to reach someone.

sharing It’s wonderful to share with others what you do in person, and have a conversation on life and what not. I suppose that translates to online in that what we share requires balance. It’s good to share what you like, but it’s important to have moderation, because most of the simple memories are the ones we keep to ourselves.

privacy I feel that there is less mystery now compared to when we wouldn’t know what someone is doing, where they are and so forth. However, privacy is one of those things that we can choose (similar to sharing) how much we want to show.

relationships My close relationships with friends and family are often those that I see in person, or even those that I might not talk to for a while, but when you reconnect in person it feels just the same. It’s easy to be online friends with many people, but in-person contact definitely solidifies a deeper friendship.

follows I only follow people I feel are a positive influence and that I feel interested to see what they are doing and how they are. Before social media was what it is now, we tend to catch up, surround ourselves and make friends with people we feel good around.

daily routine social media is a normal, regular part of many people’s everyday routine. I remember before social media, I spent a lot more time reading the newspaper while I was having breakfast, playing with puzzles, going to the library for an afternoon (which I still love to do) and being creative with my hands.

online personality When I think of social media apps like Instagram, there can definitely be a narrow snapshot of what the person is like. We only get a tiny glimpse from a shot snapped in a second. We can choose what we want to show and we can show ourselves a certain way.

in person The best form of communication is always in person, even though it’s great that we can connect with people online, especially if we’re unable to see them often. I’m grateful for social media, and at the same time, when I’m with the ones I love, I don’t tend to use my phone so much. It’s the ability to be in the present that is important.

over consumption As I previously mentioned, I tend to only follow those I know I’ll like their posts almost every time they post. I feel that then gives an added value, rather than joining the noise and mindlessly passing through many posts. It also saves time to minimize the amount of online content you consume.

Art by Annya Marttinen

9 thoughts on “The Life We Lived Before Social Media

  1. Really like these points you raised about the social media age and the time before that. Certainly there seems to be less privacy and security these days if you participate in social media – you can share anything you want online. I’m not much of a user on social media, and rarely post things up even on my personal profiles. But one thing I like of social media is that it allows to text others. When communicating with others (when we’re not catching up in person), I much prefer to text someone rather than call them – and that’s just the introvert in me.

    1. Thank you Mabel. That’s true, I appreciate that it allows us to message others. I suppose an aspect I really miss is that sense of privacy and mystery, but again we’re all participating and have a choice in how much we want to share.

  2. I think that while social media really can enhance our lives, it is so important to find balance and prevent it from overshadowing our real-life relationships and hobbies outside of the online world. Personally, I find it quite hard to have the same meaningful conversations with someone online as I would in person. Loved reading this, such a well written and meaningful piece!

  3. Great post and great points. I sometimes think about the portrayal of myself on social media (including my blog) and wonder if it is an accurate representation of my self or not. But really, I feel it is only a slice, and I tend to be a more private person. I prefer to share personal thoughts and feelings with only a close few, so I don’t think my social media can ever reflect my true self the same way I might have my “professional work self” and my true, private self. But then I think people will think I am being “Fake.” What do you think, Katie?

  4. Thank you Erin. I don’t think it’s fake if you are just being yourself, although Social media does tend to only show a very small slice of ourselves. I feel in my blog I’m always speaking from my heart, but there are many things I choose not to say, and only some things I will share. Things online can be interpreted in different ways. However, even in everyday life (offline) I am more open with those I’m close to, and I tend to only share certain things with those I’m not so close with.

    Social Media is more based around images that capture that second of action, but really knowing a person definitely takes time because there’s so much depth to every person. I can relate to when you say you tend to share more personal thoughts and feelings with a few close friends. I am the same :) That’s very natural, because Social Media is a public platform at the end of the day. I think as long as you stay true to yourself, that’s the most important thing!

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