How do we deal with the continually vast changing attitudes and/or personalities in our social media settings? How do we protect ourselves as well as our readers? How do we shut down those who only want to harm us?
People believe they have the right to speak their mind, but take no responsibility for the fall-out after doing so. Guess what? There are consequences for every action.
The time will come when you run across an individual who is just plain mean, and their agenda is to spread ill-will. They do not want anything from you other than to hurt you, to make you feel minimized in some way. They will lash out at you as you are a source available to them on a social media platform. These jokers have nothing to lose behind a faceless screen name.
So, like a game of poker, we deal, and the joker is definitely wild.
Then there are the genuinely wounded. You will need to decipher who you are dealing with. If you believe you are dealing with a wounded soul, here are three suggestions:
- Offer Guidance. Many seek out social media to look for guidance. The guidance they have asked for but never received. Pleaded for but those pleas went unheard. It is not hard to offer guidance, a simple plan to ensure the reader receives validation. Every human being deserves to have their needs met and some guidance for the hard times, but not many get the guidance they seek.
- Offer Hope. Some individuals are merely seeking out some sort of hope. Hope to them may feel fleeting. It may be difficult to find hope let alone maintain it. Hope is what keeps us alive! Make sure you leave your reader with an offer of hope! Things may be very bad for them at the moment… horrible. There has to be hope.
- Listen To Understand. Often an individual is only seeking understanding. No one wants to feel misunderstood. It hurts! It wounds. When seeking out understanding and then not receiving it, the emotional price is high! Mis-understandings are insidious … creeping in on us, making our wounds deeper and deeper. Try to understand what your reader is saying, take the time to listen and respond.
Now, let’s remember, every deck has at least two jokers.
When you run into the joker, you do what you need to do to stop the game! Remove the player. An individual that is not seeking out anything other than guidance, hope, or understanding is not your responsibility. You end their game. Because to them, this is all it is; an abusive game they play while hiding behind a screen name and enjoying the destruction of your self-esteem. You do not allow that hand to be played, end them.