How often do you check Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.?
It’s a little bit sickening if I think about my personal social media activity. Good, bad or indifferent: I am a hyper-active internet user. I love that it gives me the ability to communicate with brands, celebrities, career icons and others, that at one time may have seemed out of reach.
If you are wondering how someone is feeling, you check their timeline or Twitter feed. If you are wondering what they are wearing or eating, you view their Insta profile. If you are wondering what to get them as a gift, peruse their Pinterest boards.
A blind date is nearly impossible if you know the other person’s name, thanks to Google and our society’s obsession with social media stalking. As part of a generation of people wearing their heart on the internet, rather than on their sleeve, there are some guidelines we should be following.
Perhaps this post is inspired by the never ending career search that I am on, but regardless, take these 5 rules into consideration before you type your next 140 character social suicide wish:
1) Use spell check. Maybe this is the English major in me, but I cannot emphasize how ignorant people look with countless grammar and spelling errors in their tweets. This doesn’t mean you have to use formal greetings and every comma, but with more and more employers checking up on your posts, why make them question your knowledge?
2) Don’t contradict yourself. Sure, your opinions may change over time.. but those opinions will not be lost in the black hole called the internet. When you decide to post the baby photos and engagement statuses that you were just complaining about last week, your followers know. They may even leave.
3) Limit the photos that you post that include alcohol. Social media is all about branding. If you post a lot about cats, you may be deemed a cat lady. If you post a lot about alcohol… you can connect the dots. Whether you are over 21 or under, understand the image of yourself that you are promoting and stand by it.
4) Don’t obsess. The only person you are hurting is yourself if you constantly scroll through other people’s pages, envying what they seem to have. Instead of watering your own grass and making it greener, you are wasting time thinking theirs is. Also, remember things aren’t always as they seem on social media. A filter and photoshop can work magic.
5) Try to make connections. Partaking in a #blog chat or adding a person at your dream employer on LinkedIn can really pay off. Communicate with your favorite brands and tell others how they can improve. The world is smaller than ever, take advantage of it.
— Allison Deutschman (@preppylogic15) April 6, 2015