In the past few weeks, I have learned so much about the power of social media in both a positive and negative context. First from my own person experience – which I will talk about in the next paragraph – and then with the horrific bombings in Paris and Beriut. My social media feed was filled with so much love via social media (mostly for Paris) as well as an unbelievable amount of hate. Hate for people who had nothing to do with this tragic event other than follow the same religious beliefs. I’ve had such a wild range of emotions as I take in all of the things I’ve seen and read. What I’ve learned is that people feed off of negativity and negativity breeds more negativity. So let’s stop, take a deep breath and make an effort to be more positive. It takes just as much energy, and the positive effects are endless.
Now back to my story and the original reason for the post. Last month I shared a post publicly on Facebook and I asked everyone to share it with the hopes that it would go viral, and it did indeed. What followed was what I wish we saw more of on social media… People shared my story by the thousands! I received so many messages from friends, family and even strangers that were filled with love and encouragement that I felt I would burst with joy. I saw firsthand what happens when people use social media for good and the positive ripped effects last for a very long time.
Over 30,000 people shared my story and brought me together with someone I had searched for for 20 years – a man who helped me after I was hit by a drunk driver. The story was picked up by many media outlets and I was even interviewed by Facebook. Below you can see most of the media links if you are interested in seeing the whole story.
Rather than make this post about that specific event, I want to give my thoughts on how I feel we can all make the world a better place to live in, and while this is not specifically business related, I believe it applies in all aspects of life. Especially in the age of technology we are in.
- Share more positive, happy and uplifting news than bad, negative or sad news.
- Stay informed on current events, but don’t read the negative comments people write.
- Be thankful for something everyday.
- Teach your children to be accepting of those who are different from them, whether it be race, religion or sexual orientation.
- Be accepting of those who are different from you.
- Help someone who has fallen down (literally or figuratively).
- Do random acts of kindness and teach this to your children.
- Your actions have a ripple effect on you and all the people you touch in your life. Good things come to those who do good things.
I recently read a status update from a friend that read “Fear & hatred cannot co-exist with love” and I couldn’t agree more.
Thanks for reading, Laura Beauparlant