I had the unfortunate privilege this weekend to experience my first ever social media bullying!
I use social media to connect with an audience who might like some inspiring content and to connect with potential clients. Therefore, my posts are a mix of promotion and value. Anyone who follows me anywhere, knows that I give A LOT for free and that it’s not all selling. But I am allowed to sell, I run a business.
Anyway, I posted a simple personal post, giving potential clients some background as to why I am not only certified to do what I do but also that I have personal experience in the matter.
This was met with the first comment: “Right that’s it, I’m unfollowing this endless self promotion” to which I thought, well who else is going to promote me if not me? This post was on LinkedIn – a social platform used to self promote! But, I also add value in my content there as you can’t just sell sell sell!
Then I shared this post in my personal and private Facebook profile. I did this to check my sanity with friends and industry friends. All I wanted to know was if I was overreacting or well within my right to be a bit miffed by the overt response this man gave. At the end of the day, if you don’t like something in your feed, you can easily unfollow or disconnect from a connection but this man felt the need to publicly say something and then proceeded to not unfollow me and instead add to the post with more hurtful comments from his own connections.
I seem to have offended by writing the word “story” and “honestly.” As there is so much BS on social media, I make a point of only sharing content that is true. If this offends, there’s not much I can do. The problem is clearly with you.
As a human being, I didn’t appreciate this barrage of engagement on this post and I could have deleted it but I didn’t and still haven’t. I actually want to see how it plays out for learning and reflection.
You could say that those commenting in this negative way are probably ideal clients for coaching lol but I have no intention of soliciting them.
As a coach, I have chosen to take the stance that there is ‘stuff’ going on with them and that they feel public humiliation of another human being is the right way to live life. I can comment but whatever I say in this situation is going to fuel the fire so I choose not to respond.
What bothered me most about this reaction to the post, is the content of the post. It’s about my depression and I state how debilitating it was. There is a suggestion in the comments that because I use the word “honestly” that this infers that I am lying. I’m afraid I don’t have any evidence of my potential suicide except for the questionnaire I filled out with the GP. For these people to choose this post to make these comments is what is so wrong with our world. Of course have an opinion but take a breath and think about what potential harm you could be doing with that one comment. What if I was still delicate and this was the straw that broke the camel’s back? What if someone who follows me on LinkedIn is feeling delicate themselves?
In a time where social media is so fiercely jumping on anything that makes a trend like the “be kind” movement after Caroline Flack’s passing, I wonder how much this actually resonates with the people who actually need to hear that it is important to be kind.
Anyway, we all have the option to remove connections, to unfollow and move on from anything that doesn’t fit our needs. It’s called freedom and I hope that those who felt the need to bring me down, get the the help they need to live better lives. Sincerely.
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