I’m seeing a trend on social media where there a number of “quizzes” available to complete, based on your social media profile. You click on the link and it tells you what they think is amazing about you. You can test how “smart” you are, how beautiful, what people like about you, etc. There is a whole sub-culture that exists on our computers. What strikes me the most is the prevalence of these quizzes. So many people are accessing them, clicking on them and sharing the results. We are lacking in actual physical social experiences and are seeking false, electronic affirmations.
What this says is that people are not meant to be alone. We are social creatures, we are designed to help and support each other. When our community fails to help and support, we seek out alternative means of uplifting ourselves. These online quizzes are meeting a deep-seated, essential need. The problem is that we know these are not true affirmations. A computer-generated algorithm cannot truly and effectively affirm us and we know it. When I complete one of these quizzes, I do it with a strong sense of doubt. I question how accurate the response is, I wonder how they drew that conclusion (especially when it’s based on just your social media profile without asking questions) and I disbelieve the results. We need real, honest affirmations from people who know us.
We need to affirm each other.
Little Bird recently wrote a blog post on Abusive Unkindness that is well worth the read. It reminds me that abuse starts when we begin treating others unkindly. She says:
Emotional unkindness is the foundation that holds
up the entire house called “abuse”.
We must be intentional about being kind. We must intentionally affirm our family, friends and acquaintances – even the strangers that make up our community. We can spread kindness in the same way we spread the flu. Have you ever done the Smile Experiment? Smile when you interact with people and see how it changes the way they interact with you. Kindness changes lives.
Kindness doesn’t just happen. It’s easy to complain, to criticize, to judge others. It’s more difficult to look for the good in every interaction, to watch for opportunities to compliment, commend, to empathize.
Let’s turn our homes, our communities, into places where kindness thrives!