Social media is one of the best online tools that can help us to connect with one another. Of course, social media per se is neither bad nor good. It depends on how you will use them.
However, our perception towards social media can also tell so much about ourselves. Oftentimes the post and comments reflect our sentiments, values, behavior, and attitudes about our priorities in life.
How are we going to be more matured, sensible, and responsible in using social media? Are there guidelines we need to consider in order to mitigate some potential risks and be more careful on how we project ourselves on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.?
Let me share with you the 10 commandments of using social media.
1. Thou shalt not allow social media to compete with family time.
Social media platforms are designed to connect with one another, especially with loved ones living on the other side of the world. Sadly, families are spending more time on gadgets than each other. For instance, the constant notifications from your Facebook can rob precious time with your family.
Needless to say, family relationship is at stake when you have no time playing with your children, or you may start losing a genuine conversation with your spouse due to too much time on social media. If you consume so much time on Twitter, perhaps it’s time to practice digital detox and spend more time with your family.
2. Thou shalt stop comparing yourself with Facebook friends.
Anyone can feel inadequate after scrolling Facebook and seeing friends’ exciting status and accomplishments. Consequently, most people suffered from depression and financial trouble because they’re always comparing themselves with others and the things they have or don’t have.
Remember that every person is unique and comparing yourself with friends on Facebook will do more harm than good. For instance, you might suffer from having a low self-esteem and envy due to coveting someone’s possessions, achievements, status, and appearance.
Remember, you don’t have to act like your life is perfect on social media.
3. Thou shalt not make any comments that will ruin one’s reputation.
Social media can ruin your reputation. Although we are entitled to our personal opinion, social media is not a good place to venting out your emotion and frustration. Posting inappropriate images or writing negative comments is disrespectful and degrading to someone else. Also, indecent comments can be captured and spread easily.
Therefore, ask yourself whether such comments will inspire people. It’s crucial to think before you post whether they are helpful and what are they saying about you. If they are not uplifting and inspiring, better to think twice before it’s too late.
4. Thou shalt be honest and sincere in dealing with your friends online.
Not everything you see on social media is true. In fact, anyone can make a fake profile on Twitter. However, just because other people are lying online, doesn’t mean you should too.
When you count your friends on Facebook, how many of them are really your true friends? Superficial relationship can be avoided by becoming sincere in dealing with people online. If you want to be an effective witness of God’s love, start by being honest with yourself and learn to be grateful to God. He knows your weaknesses and limitations and your part is to accept and improve yourself.
5. Thou shalt be sensible on what you will be posted on social media.
You shall not upload photos and videos that may trigger or promote conflict between people. Consider your motives in posting about your achievements and latest acquired possessions. Are you doing it just to brag or thanks to God for these undeserved gift?In fact, even posting positive image may also be interpreted as bragging by people who don’t know you well. So before you post about your accomplishments on Facebook, think about the impression you may make on others.
6. Thou shalt be generous of giving words of encouragement.
Most people today are stressed out and emotionally drained due to COVID-19 pandemic virus. Sometimes they are hiding their pains from happy faces they projected on social media. If you happen to spot a friend or colleague who is sad, be generous and willing to comfort.Never hesitate to offer some words of encouragement and genuine kindness whenever there’s an opportunity. Be quick and place a positive comment on a blog post, YouTube account, and Twitter and learn to pray for them.
7. Thou shalt not commit cheating and online adultery.
There is no doubt online cheating can also happen even on Facebook and Twitter. If you are not careful enough in chatting with opposite sex, infidelity can ruin or sabotage a healthy relationship. How does online affair damage a relationship? Problems that arise include loss of respect, a decrease in self-esteem, and a sense of isolation.
Although online infidelity may never really involved a physical contact, it can seriously leading to cyber sex. It is important to spend time with your spouse in order to avoid such temptation.
8. Thou shalt be cautious and careful with your privacy.
Stealing can also happen online. Posting your identity and other related personal information can be vulnerable to hacker. Such people are looking for opportunities to steal information if you are not careful enough.
Ensure the privacy setting on your social media account is secured. Never accept any friend request unless you know the person well. Protecting your social media privacy must be a top priority.
9. Thou shalt not judge someone online.
It’s quite easy to judge someone on social media. Most of the time, we are tempted to give unwise remark just because of someone’s profile and outward appearance. The truth is we don’t really know what’s behind those posts and images.
Habits like name-calling, harsh comments, and judging people can certainly offend someone and eventually destroy friendship.
10. Thou shalt maintain humility even on social media.
It’s tempting to brag on social media. For instance, anyone can post photos about job promotion, a new designer bag, and even some achievements of your children. As true follower of Christ, it’s essential to find the right balance between boasting and recognizing the blessings God has given you.
Humility can make a significant impact on anyone’s life. Instead of preaching and insisting your values, it’s better to be humble and let your good deeds and actions speak to prove your noble intention.
Social media has changed our lifestyle and the way we communicate with people. Remember these 10 commandments so you will be able to use you them wisely.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things. —Philippians 4:8, NIV