Social Media & Relationships


We all live and breathe in the “WhatsApp world” today. Everything in life is like 2 minute noodles. We neither have the time nor the patience to listen or communicate for more than a few minutes. The social media is like an instant fix for everything in life today.

People started with facebook and then moved to WhatsApp. Now its snapchat and Instagram. We do not want to waste time writing a few lines to post on social media. We have moved on from words to pictures and reels. We want minimum effort but maximum impact.

Today if we look at our life, it is something like this. We post on social media and if nobody reacts or responds, we get negatively impacted. We may not react to what others post but when nobody reacts to our posts we go crazy. Like someone beautifully said – “You will be the most successful person in your life, if you follow all the advices you give to others”

I am reminded of a very old quote in communication which I heard way back in 1989. It reads as – “ I know, you believe, you understand, what you think I said. But I don’t know whether you realise that what you heard is not I meant. “. This was not only prophetic but well ahead of the time.

We need to realise that everyone is just like us. Nobody has the time or the patience to react to every post of ours. Most of us are members of multiple groups on social media. If we have the courage to post something and not worry if nobody reacts, we should continue to post or else, we should back off. Nobody is waiting in the wings to react to every post of ours. Neither do we.

Life is not different. We need to live life on our own terms. We need to be self dependant and self reliant. We can do whatever we want in life as long as we do not expect anyone else to do what we want. We need to realise that everyone has a right to live life their way. As long we are independent and harmless to others, it is fine. Of course, if we can help people along the way, it is great, if not let us not interfere in others affairs too.

While all forms of social media has helped us technologically to connect with people, it cannot help us express our emotions in real life. Meeting a friend in real or calling a near or dear one cannot be replaced with any number of virtual hugs or kisses or emoticons.

As long as we are willing to accept social media as a means to an end and not an end itself, it is fine. The day we think social media is an end in itself and will transform our lives forever, we are mistaken. Technology can at best be an enabler to human kind and not a substitute for human interactions.

Let us learn to communicate with or without social media but with real emotions in life.

S Ramesh Shankar

1st August 2021


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