Saturday, May 2, 2015

Post Mission Life, Psychology of Social Media

So this blog is my mission blog, and I was just going to keep it that way and never touch it again. Then I signed up with a psychology of social media class at school and a requirement is that I blog about my reflections on social media. So here goes:
This week in class we watched a TED Talk entitled "connected, but alone?" here's a link: 
Anyways this woman is talking about how with the rise of social media we are keeping each other at a safe distance. We don't lose track of each other, but we don't really interact either. Something this TED talk brought to mind for me was the difference I've had trying to make friends when I first arrived at BYUH compared to returning to BYUH after my mission.
See when I came here in 2010 as a freshman, social media was certainly a thing, but not in the way it is now. A lot has changed in 5 years. When I got here, the friends I made, I made in person. The girls lived in my hallway and dorm, or were friends of friends that I met. Guys I met in my classes or in the school cafeteria, library, hallways, classes or really anywhere where students congregate. I had close friends fast! It was some of the most fun days of my life.
Upon my return from my mission I've found making friends does not come as easily as it did. This TED talk along with our class discussion helped me realize one possible reason why. Normal times when students congregate, are not about congregating anymore. When a student is in a place where they aren't among anyone they know, or actively engaged doing something, they are on their phones. People make themselves unapproachable to anyone let alone to people they don't know. I find myself doing the same thing, getting onto my phone and looking at whatever social media is available to fill the void of interacting with people, when really I should just get up and interact with some people that are right around me. I'm going to try that out more this semester. I'm going to put my phone down and force some strangers to put theirs down to so that I can have a conversation and make some new friends.

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