Yesterday I had an interesting experience. Social media has become a big part of our every day lives. Personally I like to see how everyone is doing, check in on friends, family, and share some of the fun or not so fun experiences from my day. As a business, I try to share updates too. Part of that being through adding a welcome message to those who choose to click "add" when following on social. I don't love auto responders, and I get a ton of them when I choose to follow other people. They seem very impersonal, but I understand the reasoning behind them. With mind I make it clear I'm still not a fan, but I want to add some depth to the first impressions of the page. I don't know about you but on social media, at times, I've found a lack of it. My goal hopefully is to let women know there's substance. A human being. Someone who's experienced a fair amount, and someone who cares.
Yesterday a woman replied suggesting I reconsider using them. Well, she caught me in an off mood, so I bit on her comment - obviously knowing it wasn't necessarily a nice one. It got to me.
Her thinking was my response was meant for someone just starting out - someone who needed encouragement - someone who needed help, and obviously I would not have sent it had I first spent some time on her page. Her comment rubbed me wrong. It's an auto-responder - nothing more.
But more than that, so what if it's over positive and encouraging? So what if it's not what she personally needs to hear? What about the thousands of women who do? What about the woman who feels alone and is looking for somewhere to belong? What about the woman who's so frustrated from trying over and over and about to give up? What about the woman who's about stuff her face with the pantry because she's tired or the woman who now wants to starve herself because of all the "perfect" bodies she's now seen on social media? What about the woman who's older and feels it's too hard to try or too late to see a difference? What about the woman who's boyfriend or even husband tears her down? What about those women? What about them?
There are so many women around us who don't have the love and support that I do. There are many who don't feel strong enough on their own and need a little encouragement. There are many who are playing the constant game of comparison - never feeling like they quite measure up - and instead feel like failures.
I'd dare say there are more of them than there are of you and me. And if they happen to find themselves on my page and on my platform, I want them to feel welcome. Even if at first it's using an automated responder.
She asked me to reconsider. Hell no. Reconsider what? The possibility of my message ending up in another box where the reader doesn't get the intent? That's fine by me and a risk I'm willing to take. I should hope that we all find opportunities to make those around us feel welcome. We all have many touch points throughout the day. At the store, while filling up gas, when picking the kids up from school, or dropping them off for practice, at the gym, in the locker room, wherever.
We are human beings, women, who need to feel noticed, welcomed, acknowledged. And while we might not all need it to the same degree or at the same times, we still all need it. Don't we? Even as strong as I feel I am, life would be a hard task to bear without my women friends and the support and love they freely give me. And they don't tell me to "tone it down" or "reconsider" - unless it's my light pink frosted lipstick - but that's another story.
So don't be that person who messaged me last night. Sadly there are already too many who look for opportunities to tear others down or find the negative in every situation.
I don't know about you, but I'm pretty tired of that. I'd rather shower kindness around like confetti - like they say. You?
Have a beautiful Sunday. I'm about to go listen to my cute friend Sarah DeVore (who you may know as sjanedevore on IG) speak in church. As a friend, I love hearing her. She has wisdom in that cute body!