“STAY CONNECTED” The importance of Connecting Beyond Social Media
By Renetta Weaver | Nov 24, 2021
Yes, we all know it takes a village, but have we created it, or did we get comfortable relying on someone else to build it?
For me, October 4, 2001, started out as a regular Monday until Social Media went down unexpectedly for about 6 hours. I don’t know about you but a lot of people around the world were thrown off and sent into panic mode.
That is because when the COVID19 pandemic hit in March 2020 we globally shifted into new forms of connection. As a people, we became heavily reliant on virtual connections such as Facebook.
In fact, the popular slogan “Physically Distance but remain Socially Connected” became the new tagline of
the time. And a lot of people young and old did just that. They were able to see what each other was up to in their daily lives along with staying informed about what was happening across the Nations.
That’s why this Social Media outage was a difficult experience for many who weren’t prepared to make another adjustment in the midst of adjusting.
When people weren’t able to connect via Facebook and Instagram it created even more disconnection. This virtual barrier to feeling connected led to more people feeling isolated.
Isolation exacerbates feelings of Depression, Anxiety, Suicidality, Boredom, and Loneness. These experiences increase addictive behaviors like drug use, alcohol consumption, increased smoking, and emotional eating.
In order to decrease these adverse experiences, it’s important to think about other ways to stay connected.
For clients, it is important to have social networks with individuals whom you can facetime, a support system outside of social media is important. Who do you speak to regularly? Who do you see on a regular basis outside of social media?
Professionals have to also think about ways to stay connected. One way is to be intentional about building your email list. Building this list will allow you to communicate with your audience outside of social media. It’s also important for you to use more than one platform and provide more than one product. That way your clients will continue to feel connected to you, supported by you, and be educated on skills to pivot through times like this.
It’s also important for you to get on a list like Clinicians of Color in order to stay connected to your peers and to stay informed on how the profession and other professionals are managing these global crises.
Lastly, it’s important for you to remember that you do not own or control social media therefore you are responsible for creating the village for the people who are assigned to you. Otherwise, you won’t be able to carry out your assignment!
How do you plan to stay connected when Social Media goes down? Make a plan and take action on it today!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Renetta D. Weaver is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Board-Certified Bariatric Counselor. Dr Renetta founded “Regain No More” which provides pre and post Bariatric Education and Clinical support. She is a blogger for Clinicians of Color Connect with her at firstname.lastname@example.org.