No matter how peaceful you might be online a social media fight can be unavoidable.
Living in the internet age has its good and bad sides. Much of the negativity affecting our digital screen takes the form of social media battles. Though Facebook arguments and Twitter wars may seem like a release, studies suggest otherwise.
Damali has some simple tips to turn the temperature down and find respectful ways to have healthy discussions online using the acronym THINK.
T – Test yourself. Ask yourself two questions. 1) Do you have all of the facts? 2) What are your options– engage, remain silent, send a DM, or take the conversation offline? Make an informed decision.
H – Have a plan. The main issue with social media battles is that people enter into an escalating pattern of conflict that usually leads to nowhere productive. What do you plan to accomplish in the exchange? Think it through beforehand. Be aware of your triggers and have a strategy to help you navigate them if they are set off.
I- Intent vs. Impact. Recognize that in social media settings there is often a big difference that you have in saying it and the impact on how it is perceived by others. Slow things down. Give your brain a chance to resist going into fight, flight or freeze mode. Try to put some time and distance in between your posts. You may have a different reaction 2 hours later.
N – Never take the bait. Some people get a rise out of saying incendiary things about social media designed to incite people. Avoid falling victim to those situations.
K- Know when to fold them. Sometimes people engage in a discussion that they realize is pointless. You have to know when to put your cards down and walk away from the table.
For now, the internet is permanent and even when people delete something that was posted, oftentimes the damage has already been done. Our THINK acronym is designed to be proactive and preventive instead of reactive and regretful.