When someone unfriends or unfollows me on social media, I have learned to say this:
See, I love trends and stats, especially related to human behavior. So, I’m fascinated by social media – a giant petry dish of moment-to-moment interactions ripe with potential to lift people up or bring them down. These platforms, from Facebook to Twitter, are like grown-up playgrounds. The goal is to avoid the bullies, and just find a nice group of friends to play with each day.
But sometimes, when you show your true colors, one or more of those friends backs away and goes looking for a new group to hang out with.
It stings, doesn’t it? Because it means somebody doesn’t really appreciate who you are and how you think. Ouch. But THEN! When a new friend shows up and “likes” you, actually wanting to hear MORE from you, everything becomes crystal clear: that other buddy, the one who bit the dust when you got real, wasn’t a great match for you in the first place. When we align with our true nature, the Universe weeds out what and who we no longer need and brings in what and who we do.
During the past year, this has played out for me online many times. When I decided to shift my business to center around my intuitive abilities, showing my true colors in the process, I was scared it would send people running. And you know what? It did. A few of them ran like the wind.
When it first started happening, it hurt to see people backing away. Not just strangers, but people I’d been connected to for a long time. I questioned if I was doing the right thing. I wondered if I should tone it down or go back into hiding. And then I asked myself three critical questions:
- After reviewing a few of my most recent social media posts, am I someone I would want to follow?
- Is the content I’m sharing an authentic reflection/representation of me?
- Do I want to spend my energy connecting with kindred spirits or pleasing the naysayers?
These questions – and my answers – were perspective-shifting for me. I no longer felt wounded by those who were unfollowing me, but grateful that every “unfollow” was actually making space for a tribe of friends and followers and cheerleaders who value who I am and what I do.
That’s what we all need and deserve – on social media, in our friendship circles, in our families, in our work. We are all big kids on the playground, looking for a nice group of friends to play with each day; people who value who we are and enrich our lives, too. There is no need to chase the people who don’t want to play with us. We flourish when we feel found and appreciated by the people who do.