How To Avoid Starting A Facebook War

How To Avoid Starting A Facebook War

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The state of the world and - more specifically - the USA, has not been pretty in recent past. People are upset, emotions are running high, and biased news sources are being accepted as pure fact. The interactions I have seen and been a part of on social media have been sad and even appaling at times. People on both sides need to take a moment to reflect on the way we are treating those who disagree with us. So, for your convenience, I have created this simple guide to help in all of your online conversations.

Think

Before anything, think. Is what I just heard/read/saw likely to be a widespread view? Is this post kind? Do I have a right to be saying this? Is this an opinion or is it a fact? Simply thinking about what you are going to say - and even re-reading it before clicking "post" - can eliminate many problems before they even come about.

No Name Calling

This is not middle school (unless you are actually a middle schooler reading this), so don't act like it. Calling someone uncultured doesn't automatically make you correct, and it certainly doesn't make you liked. You can easily make your point without calling names, and if you can't, your point isn't worth making.

Don't Assume

Just because you saw one article about the inauguration doesn't mean you know everything about it. That meme you saw doesn't reflect the views of anyone but the person who posted it. Never assume you know what a person thinks because of their partisan affiliations, the protests they have participated in, or even their Facebook statuses. If you want to know what your friend, co-worker, or classmate thinks about a subject, ask. We all know what happens when you assume - you make an ass out of U and Me.

Check your sources

If you didn't know this already, literally anyone can write an article or blog (take me, for example), and they can say anything they want. They can tell you they have had experiences they have not had. And just because it is a news source does not mean it is unbiased. MSNBC is liberal and Fox is conservative. If you want to be sure you have your facts straight, try checking government websites or something more moderate like the Wall Street Journal. Sources, bias, and false information matter, and can be extremely hurtful.

Discuss, don't argue

Contrary to popular belief, expressing your opinion can be done without arguing. Arguing probably means you aren't listening to what the other person is saying. This will change no one's mind. Yelling, and using harsh language actually, makes others more defensive and set in their ways. If you are wanting to open someone's mind, try kindness and gentleness instead.

Don't be a jerk.

All of this can really be summed up in this one sentence. We all know how to treat others with respect, so why do those rules go out the window when we are sitting behind a screen? It's simple: treat others how you would like to be treated. As cliche as that is, it will get you much farther in life.


So, next time you start to respond to that person's Facebook post, think about these guidelines. Maybe things will turn out differently for you this time.

Cover Image Credit: pexels.com

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If You've Ever Been Called Overly-Emotional Or Too Sensitive, This Is For You

Despite what they have told you, it's a gift.
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Emotional: a word used often nowadays to insult someone for their sensitivity towards a multitude of things.

If you cry happy tears, you're emotional. If you express (even if it's in a healthy way) that something is bothering you, you're sensitive. If your hormones are in a funk and you just happen to be sad one day, you're emotional AND sensitive.

Let me tell you something that goes against everything people have probably ever told you. Being emotional and being sensitive are very, very good things. It's a gift. Your ability to empathize, sympathize, and sensitize yourself to your own situation and to others' situations is a true gift that many people don't possess, therefore many people do not understand.

Never let someone's negativity toward this gift of yours get you down. We are all guilty of bashing something that is unfamiliar to us: something that is different. But take pride in knowing God granted this special gift to you because He believes you will use it to make a difference someday, somehow.

This gift of yours was meant to be utilized. It would not be a part of you if you were not meant to use it. Because of this gift, you will change someone's life someday. You might be the only person that takes a little extra time to listen to someone's struggle when the rest of the world turns their backs.

In a world where a six-figure income is a significant determinant in the career someone pursues, you might be one of the few who decides to donate your time for no income at all. You might be the first friend someone thinks to call when they get good news, simply because they know you will be happy for them. You might be an incredible mother who takes too much time to nurture and raise beautiful children who will one day change the world.

To feel everything with every single part of your being is a truly wonderful thing. You love harder. You smile bigger. You feel more. What a beautiful thing! Could you imagine being the opposite of these things? Insensitive and emotionless?? Both are unhealthy, both aren't nearly as satisfying, and neither will get you anywhere worth going in life.

Imagine how much richer your life is because you love other's so hard. It might mean more heartache, but the reward is always worth the risk. Imagine how much richer your life is because you are overly appreciative of the beauty a simple sunset brings. Imagine how much richer your life is because you can be moved to tears by the lessons of someone else's story.

Embrace every part of who you are and be just that 100%. There will be people who criticize you for the size of your heart. Feel sorry for them. There are people who are dishonest. There are people who are manipulative. There are people who are downright malicious. And the one thing people say to put you down is "you feel too much." Hmm...

Sounds like more of a compliment to me. Just sayin'.

Cover Image Credit: We Heart It

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20 Things I'd Do If The Concept Of Time Was Abolished

If only our lives weren't limited by time.

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Recently, news outlets have been reporting on how the people of Sommarøy, a Norwegian island located north of the arctic circle, would like to remove the concept of time. This is largely in part due to the fact that the sun does not set during much of the summer nor does it rise during the winter. The inhabitants of Sommarøy do not have rigidly separated days and nights like the rest of the world and can be found doing normal daytime activities at 2 am in the summers.

They also would like to take clocks out of their society. Although this lifestyle might seem impractical to the rest of us, I couldn't help but wonder what it would be like to live in a world where time is irrelevant, in regards to the concept AND the physical effects of its passing. This newfound information gave rise to ideas of things (some simple, some whimsical) I'd do if the concept of time did not exist and we had as much time to do the things we wanted.

1. Live on a ship at sea.

2. Watch a flower grow from a seed to its death.

3. Apply as much makeup as desired without being late.

4. Retake my favorite college courses and participate as fully as I possibly can, including the completion of every single reading and film.

5. Take a non-stop trip through every country in the world.

6. Learn to play and fully master every single musical instrument in existence.

7. Watch a full rotation of Earth around the sun from space.

8. Live by myself in a cabin at the edge of the woods a la Thoreau.

9. Reread every single book that shaped my childhood.

10. Have a brief conversation with every old friend.

11. Re-drink that first sip of the perfect cup of coffee.

12. Observe how the tides change with the lunar cycle.

13. Learn as many languages as possible.

14. Sit at the beach and listen to music for days.

15. Train for an Olympic event.

16. Write a detailed, thorough analysis of every track in my favorite movie soundtracks.

17. Take a photo of every interesting place I visit and every little nook I find peace in and make a physical photo album.

18. Cook food without burning it.

19. Watch a star's life cycle from birth to death.

20. Replay the feeling of coming home.

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