“Ugh…my life sucks and nobody cares.”
“I hate people that tell me they will be here at 8 pm to hang out with me and then don’t show up.”
“Sounds like everyone had a great day. My day was the worst day ever!”
“My family is PURE EVIL!”
“Insert any political comment that assumes everyone thinks like you and those that don’t are stupid.”
We have all been a Debbie Downer before. We have all written something that we shouldn’t have from time to time.
Maybe it’s unintentional.
Maybe it’s a cry for help.
Maybe we are just miserable and have set a goal to make sure we at least make one more person miserable each day through the use of Facebook so we don’t feel alone.
I don’t know about you, but when my social network timeline looks more like the National Enquirer and TMZ had a baby, I tend to stay away for awhile.
You can use Facebook however you want, but here are a few thoughts on how not to be a Debbie Downer.
1. If you see a status update of a friend who is sharing about an enjoyable experience they had, don’t be the person that writes, “How come I wasn’t invited?”. I think your comment is the answer to why you didn’t get invited. They wanted to have fun! In reality, it probably wasn’t malicious and they didn’t make the decision to exclude you. They just had a fun time with some other friends. Be happy for them! Then, once you turn you are off Facebook, you can be jealous and bitter about it.
2. Please don’t write the status update that directly or indirectly slams another person. If the comment is directed at one person, then call or direct message that person. Putting it on Facebook is like putting up a live video feed of an intersection that you know is about to have a huge wreck for all of us to watch. I shouldn’t be looking, but I can’t take my eyes away. The indirect ones seem to be what I struggle the most with. They always give me a complex and make me think it’s about me. Not because I think everything is about me, it’s just that I know I make mistakes all of the time and it could easily be about me. The worst part of that is finding out who you may be writing about, if it isn’t me, is really none of my business in the first place. Stay away from status updates that turn your friends into detectives that have to uncover the clues to a mystery they have no business solving!
3. Try not to ever hijack someone’s status update to share something that’s better.
“I just found out I got a $5 raise at work”
Comment – “I just got a $25,000 raise at work and won $3.1 Million by playing the lottery. Congrats!”
“So proud of our daughter. She just sang at her first talent show.”
Comment – “Awww…how cute. Our daughter was recognized as gifted vocally at the age of 2 and is her CD is now the fastest selling ever on iTunes.”
These comments are a little over the top, but you know what I mean. I know that you are excited about all of the great things that are happening in your life and you should be! Just be careful not to make a comment on someone’s status update that makes you the star of the show. If your friend is excited to be going to England for vacation, they might not want to hear that you lived there for 3 years and hated it. The key here would be to remember it’s not your status update…it’s theirs!
4. Do your best to not write status updates that make us fear for your life. If you really are that lonely and depressed maybe the best thing for you would be to get off the computer and get around some people that love you. Remember Facebook relationships are not totally real relationships. It’s like Tron, but different. When I read something depressing that someone I care about wrote online, I tend to try to respond to them offline. I know what you are writing may be true, but it doesn’t mean that’s the write place to put it. I think you need a different outlet might be healthier for you and for your friends on the Book of Faces.
5. Be weary of the political comments. It’s ok to talk politics. I would just say that if you are going to say something that could be politically polarizing you should expect people to disagree with you. The key would be to allow for disagreements and to have an open dialogue. You should treat it like a conversation and not a cage fight. Once you start to attack someone else’s point of view or treat someone like they are stupid for not thinking like you do, you have officially become a Debbie Downer.
Those are 5 thoughts on how to not become a Debbie Downer. They are in no particular order of importance and I am sure that there are plenty of things I missed. Please understand, these are all things that I have done in the past. I am not pointing fingers at ANYBODY!! If you are reading this and think that I am writing about you, it’s not true. See this as a fun blog post with a little bit of truth sprinkled in for us all to think about.
Give me your thoughts on being a Debbie Downer.
Am I wrong? Right? Did I miss a big one?