I was thinking of leaving fb, but then I thought about all of the fiery rhetoric and burning invectives I would miss!
What about you? Do you have FOMO (fear of missing out)? Are you addicted to a good fight? Are you just here for the show?
Why Are You Here?
Do you get your news from FB? I admit, sometimes I think, “I wonder what’s going on in the world today?” So I go to fb assuming that anything major will have been posted by one of my “friends.”
Are you on FB to promote your business?
Are you on FB to connect with loved ones, especially the ones who don’t live nearby?
How much time is FB taking up in your life? What else could you be doing? What did we do before FB?
I know, lots of you are saying, “No, this doesn’t describe me. I’m just here to stay connected to loved ones.” But even so, just because you’re just here to stay connected with loved ones doesn’t mean you aren’t impacted by news, ads and opinions.
Are They Proud?
Are Mark Zuckerberg and the shareholders sitting at the conference table discussing how their platform has become vicious tool of hate, lies and division? Or is their profit so outrageously large that they are too happy sitting back on their easy chairs and yachts to let any sense or care about the destruction impact them?
Our Emotional Centers Were Lit UP, But Not Like Today
Do you remember when FB and YOUTUBE focused on people connecting with people, way back in the beginning? Businesses weren’t running the advertising campaigns through fb, they were in print and on the radio. Politicians weren’t running their campaigns on FB. There were no “influencers.” It was a safe, family friendly place to be. The images and messages sparked the emotional center of our brain, but there were no embedded messages or calls to action based on someone’s agenda, and there was no internal pressure to do battle with your fb “friends” or even with strangers.
What Would Happen If….?
What if we did a mass exodus from FB (IG doesn’t seem as bad) and found some other way to share pics of our babies, pets, gardens, etc.? Would there be a marked improvement in the way people of Earth treat each other?
Lighting Up The Brain
FB is a constant stream of images and short messages. Short messages are very similar to images. Think “sight words;” AND, THE, LOVE, DOG, HATE… We process sight words and constant exposure to slogans like, “BLACK LIVES MATTER” or “JUST DO IT” or “I LOVE YOU” as images. In other words, you don’t need to read it, you just look at it and know what it says.
Our brain can process thousands of images and simple messages in a short amount of time. Images and simple messages don’t light up the “thinking” part of our brain, as much as they light up the “emotional” part of our brain.
Emotion and thought are not always congruent. They don’t always line up. But we aren’t going to slow everything down so we can actually think about each image or message, we are going to just keep scrolling, because after all, aren’t most of us scrolling, whether it’s social media or a product category on Amazon, or news headlines as our “down time?” We feel tired, lazy, need a break, so we sit down, tune out our “real” environment, and get lost in world of scrolling.
Off To The Races With Our Emotions
Next thing you know, we’re off to the races with our emotions because we have seen an image that has lit up the emotional centers in our brain. Not all images are created equal. The media is really good at finding the high impact images, because they know people will be sparked by them, moved to emotion and moved to act, either by liking, commenting, fighting or whatever. They are the experts when it comes to “click bait.”
Have We Fallen Right Into Their Hand?
You know you. You know if you are hooked. Pay attention to how triggered you become by images and short messages and slogans. You have choices. Talk to your loved ones. Ask if it makes sense to use a different platform. I realize, you have different groups of “friends” and it’s not as simple as setting up a few private chat groups on text or a less volatile platform. All I hope for is that we can all pause, just briefly and ask ourselves, “Does someone, something, or some platform have my emotions chained up?” If so, what should I do about it.