Sharing my faith and my life one day at a time.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Comment! Like! Follow! Reply!

Yes, all of those things are opportunities to encourage! I am about to think out loud on this blog post. Thoughts crossed my mind just right now that I feel needs to be shared and I hope that I can get your thoughts on it.

I just logged in to my Facebook account and carefully scanned through my "Top News" list. By looking through it, I found out that:

  • It's my friend's son's birthday
  • One of my best friends know a former co-worker from way back
  • A couple we know is celebrating their anniversary
  • A friend's daughter won a tennis match
  • A girlfriend is desperate for her infant to take a nap because she needs it too
  • A newly-married couple we know is about to purchase their first car

As I got done scanning and ready to click the "X" button and go on about my business, a gentle realization hit me. As content as I was in knowing what my friends are up to, I could have done the following:

  • Said a "happy birthday" to my friend's son
  • Let me best friend and former co-worker that I am thrilled at how small this world is
  • Congratulated the couple on their anniversary
  • Cheered on my friend's daughter's tennis win
  • Tell my friend that she is doing a great job at motherhood
  • Told our newlywed friends how happy I am about their new car

While all these feelings are true and genuine, it just suddenly bothered me how many times I felt these things and never communicated it to the very people who will actually feel encouraged hearing it. This triggered to ask myself this hard question:

"How many opportunities to encourage someone did I allow to pass?"

The sad part about it is that it only takes a couple of minutes of my time to send a comment, to click "Like", or  type a reply that expresses my joy on these updates. How many blog entries have I read without even bothering to comment how blessed I am by it? Have I become content seeing my timeline on Twitter without even engaging to the people who connect there?

The truth is, we use different forms of social media to let the world know that what we have to say matters. We want someone to validate our thoughts. We desire to make a difference.

Someone told me that there are two kinds of people in this world and you will know it when that person enters the room. He will either say "Here I am!" or "There you are!" When we look at our life online -- are we the former or the latter?

As much as I would like to think that what I have to say will make a difference, wouldn't the way I respond to someone's statement (and making a habit out of it) create a bigger impact?

Just my thoughts! What do you think?


valerie said...

I think.....what an encouraging post. Thanks for the thoughts!

Liz said...

Great post, Sam! :)

Samantha Johnson said...

Thank you for the kind words Valerie and Liz!

November Tan said...

I went to a presentation at work the other day on the importance of social networks to development organizations, and the guest speaker said, "People are self maximizing actors. That's why social media is so successful." But you're right, if there was no one to validate the importance of what we have to say on social media, it wouldn't be a success. In the end, it really is love (in any form it manifests online) that makes these sort of things successful, no?

Samantha Johnson said...

I agree Ember :-)

Diane G said...

"Someone told me that there are two kinds of people in this world and you will know it when that person enters the room. He will either say "Here I am!" or "There you are!" When we look at our life online -- are we the former or the latter?"

brilliant post =) reminds me of a thought i had before (but never really put out) ... funny that the more technology advances to make the world smaller and accessible, the less we communicate out to the world (more like, we communicate to the world what WE'RE about, regardless of who's listening!)

Gone are the days of snail mail and pen pals where, back in "the old days" people patiently wrote and waited weeks for lovingly handwritten letters and packages. Now it only takes seconds to send an email, and we keep putting it off..! tsk =p

Samantha Johnson said...

Thank you Diane! I really miss old-fashioned postal mail.

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