Wednesday, May 21, 2014

To Share or Not To Share: Part 1

Do you read more than one blog? If so, you've probably noticed that there are many different kinds of bloggers. There are some who only blog about one thing for the purpose of sharing information. Topics can range from food, DIY projects, their family, IT stuff (yes, there are IT blogs), and you-name-it. Then there are others who use their blog as an internet journal. These bloggers allow their online journal to be accessible for others to read whether they're documenting a vacation they're taking or just day-to-day joys and struggles.

Some fellow blogger friends and I have been extolled for our transparency in sharing personal struggles on our blogs.

But, I have a confession to make to you dear readers.... I don't share everything with you.

When I worked as a personal trainer, I worked with a woman who shared way too much information about herself. I felt bad for her. Other ladies would actually roll their eyes when she'd start talking because she was just TMI all of the time. Sitting on the floor with my 8lb dumbbells, I looked at her and realized that because she lacked discretion, she had lost the respect of her peers and therefore her influence... Not to mention, no one wanted to be around her. And, let me be clear, it wasn't just because of what she was sharing about herself... It was because she was all mouth and no ears. No one likes to be around someone who only talks and never listens.

Now, do I have my tongue completely under control? No. I've had my Jennifer Lawrence moments where I've mentally buried my head in my hands and asked, "Did I really just say that?"

Honesty and transparency and openness are all wonderful things... In the right place at the right time with the right people. JLaw has admitted herself that the red carpet is not the appropriate place to discuss some of the things she ends up talking about.

So, let's take a cue from our favorite Hollywood starlet's mistakes and be honest and transparent and open where it's appropriate, when it's safe, and with people who actually care.

Do not be honest and transparent and open when it is not appropriate, in an environment that is primed for an argument, and with people who can erase you from their life without more than a second's thought by clicking the "unfollow" button.

Why? Because they might "unfriend" you? No, because sharing in that kind of environment has the great potential to set us up for disappointment, bad advice, or false affirmation.

If we are functioning on affirmation that is based solely on the number of "likes" we get or comments that agree with us or tell us how pretty we are or how cool our tomato plant is, we're gonna be in a heap of trouble if our internet goes out or our smart phone breaks.

I listened to a sermon this morning by Steven Furtick called The Problem with Pinterest(The Hope of Glory Part 4), and it basically sums the whole problem the majority of our culture is facing in regards to comparison through social media.

As I was listening, I kept thinking about this balance. Transparency vs Discretion.

So what is the first step to finding the balance? I think we start by really considering where we're getting our affirmation from.

Why is finding the balance important? Join me later this week as we delve into that question. : )

"There's an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on the earth." Ecclesiastes 3:1