07 Jan Facebook Jail, Good News, & Butchered Quotes
“My heart is stirred by a noble theme…”
This is a BLOG POST of my January email newsletter.
If you’re surprised you are receiving this newsletter, it means I added your name to my list. This probably conflicts with proper newsletter protocol, so if you want to unsubscribe, scroll to the bottom—and accept my apologies. If not, read on—it might be fun and informative.
One morning two months ago while reading my email, Facebook informed me that I’d tried to reset my password in the middle of the night. I quickly emailed them back, but…too late. I’d been hacked. And I haven’t been able to access either my personal FB account or my business (author) page since. For the first several weeks, I tried everything to recapture my identity, to no avail. Facebook jail.
I’m a little ashamed to admit I suffered withdrawal. I missed my friends, and I missed the chatter. But I’ve spent hours over the past six weeks thinking about social media, and here’s what I discovered.
- My authenticity diminished. It’s easy to look good in life. You just hide part of yourself. But it’s hard to be authentic and honest and true—whether it’s with your friends, your spouse, or your God. You tend to hide the wounds or hurts or humiliations because you don’t want others to know, or you’re ashamed or guilty or disgusted. I’ve learned if you conceal those feelings, they just simmer and boil inside—until they surface, like in anger or hate or spite or cruelty. FB rarely fostered my authenticity and often inhibited it. I didn’t like that.
- The cancel culture hurt. On several occasions when I posted, I got attacked. My opinion was immediately canceled. In two instances by friends of mine who had been friends for over 50 years. I reached out and rescued those friendships, I think, but I don’t have so many friends that I can risk losing one over a comment on FB.
- It’s hard enough knowing what to believe. With all the deception, untruths, and lies posted on FB, I realized the more time I spent on there, the harder it was to know what to believe. Life is hard enough knowing right from wrong and FB made that so much tougher. It reminds me of the lyric from the Warren Zevon song, Lawyers, Gun and Money: “How was I to know she was with the Russians, too?”.
So, if you’re wondering why you haven’t seen me on Facebook, I’m enjoying jail. I may stay here awhile. (BTW, I can’t post to Instagram either, since its owned by FB).
Point: Sometimes you need to ride the horse in the direction it’s going. Or, in other words, when you can’t change a situation, maybe that’s because God doesn’t want it changed.
More on Social Media
Watch The Social Dilemma on Netflix. “This documentary-drama explores the dangerous human impact of social networking, with tech experts sounding the alarm on their own creations.” Eye-opening and a little scary.
Links I Like
Simon Dixon’s blog. He’s a brilliant Brit, and I guarantee he will bring a new, innovative perspective to your thinking on a variety of topics. Definitely worth a look. https://www.ideaengineering.com/thoughts
Lily King. First, I read Writers & Lovers, a funny, poignant novel about a woman putting on her big girl pants. Loved it! Then, her award-winner, Euphoria. Books like that one make me realize I may never be able to write anything so fascinating. (But I keep trying). Now I know why it won so many accolades and prizes. Wow!
(Note: these are not Christian books, and the language or sexual situations may be offensive to some).
A non-fiction book for parents with a subtitle of 33 Strategies to Teach Teenagers Self-Reliance, Confidence and Responsibility. When I come up with the main title, I’ll let you know. (It’s going to have Snowflakes or GenZ in there, I think). Look at a sneak peek below with 3 strategies and the opening lines of the chapter. Not-so-amazingly, these strategies work with younger children, grandkids, and even spouses or significant others. Simply replace the word “Teen” in the chapter titles below with the name of someone in your life. Works, huh?
Express Your Love to Your Teen (#1)
Did your parents say they loved you? Out loud? I don’t remember mine expressing love that way more than occasionally. They showed it all the time, but they didn’t say it much at all. Maybe just my family or their generation didn’t verbalize love well. Let’s make sure this generation hears it more.
We all want to feel loved. It’s one of the most basic human needs. Right up there with air, water, and food. Most children know, deep down, that their parents love them. But they also want to hear it, continually. Knowing that they are loved boosts their outlook, elevates their mood, and instills them with pride and self-esteem.
Teach Your Teen to Apologize (#5)
When discussing this chapter with a friend of mine, she revealed a startling situation about her youth.
She said, “My parents told me never to apologize. That it was a sign of weakness.”
I wondered how many hurts in her family went unacknowledged. Stuffed down deep inside, festering, maybe bubbling up later as anger…or shame…or worse.
I believe the exact opposite. I believe you show strength when you apologize.
Do Not Solve Every Problem for Your Teen (#22)
You always want to be a good, sound voice in your teen’s ear as much as possible, talking through situations regularly and intimately. But if you tell them exactly what to do for every situation, you grow young adults unable to make decisions and accept outcomes.
As my good friend and fellow author Hal McLean (The Enduring Organization) says: “Do not open the cocoon for them”.
The butterfly needs to struggle to get out of the cocoon to develop the strength to fly. If the cocoon is slit open “to save them” from the struggle, the butterfly is unable to fly and dies. Similarly, parents can resist the urge to intervene and prevent the struggle, at the same time acting as the teen’s biggest fan during the struggle.
Good Pandemic News
What the Pandemic Has Done for Dating: Many single Americans have been more intentional about whom they date, are having deeper conversations, and are spending more quality time with new partners. (From The Atlantic).
“Very little I know I read in the newspapers—except the sports scores.” (With my apologies to Will Rogers: “All I know is just what I read in the papers”).
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Heb. 11:1
Of This I’m Certain
God isn’t afraid. God isn’t confused. He isn’t fearful about the future. God isn’t worried about yesterday or tomorrow. He isn’t exhausted, fatigued, depressed, or forlorn. God never loses hope. After all, He’s God.
The 2nd Best Thing You Can Do
Replacing an Old, Bad Habit…
…With a New, Good One. You’ve heard that quoted often I imagine. When my bicycle riding produced chronically inflamed IT bands and hip flexor muscles, I needed a new physical challenge. So…I started ocean swimming! But that’s a story for another newsletter.
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Take care, be well, and keep the faith,