{Re}frame SoMe

Following the 2016 election, I was glued to social media, or SoMe as I like to call it. The news, Flipboard, CNN, NPR.

The result: Nightmares. Anxiety. Discontent. Anger. Frustration.

I finally took Facebook off my phone so I wouldn’t be tempted to look at it when I wasn’t at my laptop. Then, I put a 10-minute per day timer on said laptop that covers up Facebook for the rest of the day and tells me in bold letters, “Stay Focused!”

While I like Twitter, I usually only use it for business tweets and follows. I’m hit or miss with Instagram and Pinterest. I guard my LinkedIn profile and postings for strictly business.

When I told Keck I’d taken Facebook off my phone, we were walking. Holding hands.

He said, “That’s probably good. It’s just rumors and gossip.”

I stopped.

Dead in my tracks.

He kept going.

I stood there.


Rumors and gossip?


To further prove his point, I recently learned Google released False, Misleading, Clickbait-y, and/or Satirical “News” Sources. Vox released a story that said the top 20 fake news stories outperformed real news stories as the election drew near. And now I’ve even learned how to spot stories that are all lies, half truths — useless.

Then, Keck reminded me, “It’s not new. Social media has been around a long time. The Romans were writing messages on walls 2,000 years ago.”

Rumors and gossip.

Letters and postcards were probably early forms of the look-at-me, wish-you-were-here, envy-producing missives like those we post on Facebook walls today. And, I saw a meme the other day that said something like this: Books in the 18th century were a cause of concern to adults because young people spent too much time reading.

From The Jane Austen Centre, Bath.

We can say things on Facebook and other social media sites we might never say to a friend’s face or in a group of friends.

I thought of the times I’d been caught talking about someone. I remembered how I felt, and how I hurt that I had been offensive to someone.

SoMe is a mighty tool.

But I needed to {re}frame it. And fast.

Because rumors and gossip.

Not only does the New Testament tell me that it’s incompatible with Christianity, it’s a Big 10 sin. (Yep, I just used the “sin” word.)

Word warns that slanderous talk and malicious gossip destroy our hearts and minds, not to mention other people. Words do hurt. Sometimes they cut deeply and mortally wound.

The writer of Romans is fairly clear. Gossips and slanderers are listed among those things that are depraved, greedy, evil, and wicked behaviors.

And, if I get caught up in it, I’m on a slippery slope to turmoil, discontentment, and hopelessness.

As the saying goes, “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.” (It seems no one is quite certain who to attribute this to — a long research project for me, another day.)

If you find yourself being caught up in too much social media, turn it off. Take a break.

{Re}frame how you see the situation, It might just help you {re}frame how you view others, how you view yourself.