Opinions posted on social media are like people’s butt cracks. Everybody has one, but we don’t all need to see them..
I’ve been on Facebook for many years, but I wasn’t one to post very often, especially rants. Nor was I ever an overly political person until the 2016 elections when America was so incredibly divided over what we all so intensely felt was right and wrong.
I was often personally offended when I read comments featuring views which opposed mine. I couldn’t believe how ignorant others were with the things they said and the candidates they supported.
As such, I often felt obligated to speak my mind after reading posts by these obviously uninformed individuals. I felt the need to correct those who were so wrong. But each time I’d post a reply, it only seemed to upset people. I just didn’t understand why.
How could anyone question my replies? They were so well versed, properly researched and well, true. I knew I was right, so how dare they question me?
I was frequently involved in many “discussions” (arguments) with friends and total strangers. I did this because I felt I needed to defend my beliefs.
I did it because I thought I was right.
After the elections were over, I started to change my outlook on things. I realized if I stopped reading the offending posts of others, I might be less offended. It seemed like a good plan in theory, but the practical applications just weren’t the same.
I tried it for a while. In fact, I stepped away from all of it for a while. Unfortunately, I’d still get messages from friends asking “did you see what that person said”? Or, “I can’t believe what they wrote”. While I tried to ignore the ignorant posts of others, it was like looking at a car crash. I had to read the comments and I had to reply.
I was being drawn in once again and I had a really hard time keeping my mouth shut.
Then something happened.
I stopped caring.
It just happened all of a sudden. Specifically, I refer to not caring about the viewpoints and commentary of others regarding current events, hot topics and political agendas. I felt free by not reading these posts. I felt I was finally released from the chains of social media.
I realized how the opinions of others had no impact on life, though I often argued over points as if the other person was the cause of the problem and I was the solution. Most people hear a comment like that and “duh”, but as stupid as it was, it’s easier said than done. Until you step away, you don’t realize just how silly it all is.
Where I used to think I was right, I realized NO ONE was right.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion, but sometimes they’re best kept inside. I don’t feel this way because I want these people to be politically correct (I am the furthest thing from politically correct). I feel this way because it’s annoying.
As a poster of commentary, the very thought of this made me change my entire style of writing. I realized what I wrote was often very opinionated and could be perceived as offensive. As such, I upset people. I lost friends. I think I probably lost some credibility as a writer too. I didn’t like that.
My style of writing changed to being more entertaining and informational, or as I often say, I play “devil’s advocate”. I now like to expose both sides of a story so the reader can draw their own conclusions. I like to question things, but from a point of logic, not opinion. And, I tell stories. If done correctly, these stories allow you the ability to create your own opinion without me telling you what to think.
This is something many writers can’t do, especially on Facebook.
As such, if it’s a one sided comment about something the writer is not an expert in, I won’t read it. And even if they are an expert, it doesn’t mean they’re always right.
The moral of my story is those who post may be totally wrong, but I don’t need to be the one to correct them. Since I’ve been doing this, my blood pressure has dropped and I’m far less stressed. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it!
Written by Marty Augustine
Marty is a Kansas City based writer and entertainer. If you like this article, please feel free to “like”, comment and share! Don’t forget to subscribe for new articles!