Have you checked your online reflection?

Be a role-model.

We are living in a time where some adults, of all walks of life; parents, teachers, professors, celebrities, athletes and especially politicians — are acting badly online today. This is sending the wrong message to our young people.

Lead by example is an expression we hear frequently, however how many people are actually walking this talk?

Many teens look to their parents, as well as their favorite celebrity or athlete as a role-model, not only offline — but online too. If you have that oops moment, which is possible, since everyone is human, it’s how they rebound that can be the teachable moment.

Today your online reputation is an extension of your online behavior which is a reflection of your offline character. 

-Sue Scheff, author of Shame Nation

What does that mean for you?

The majority of colleges and businesses today are using social media to screen their potential applicants and candidates prior their interviews. Being your child’s role-model online is imperative in helping them step into a bright future.

Schools and cooperation’s consider you an extension of their brand – both online and offline. 

-Sue Scheff, author of Shame Nation

They loved your GPA until they saw your tweets, is not only a clichè, it’s reality today.

Digital you.

What does your online behavior say about you? Take the time to reflect on your social media online behavior. You are what you post.

Re-examine your social feeds in these three easy steps:

  1. Your words and tone matters. Let’s remember, things online can be taken out of context and don’t always translate as we intend them to, especially your words and tone. Re-evaluate what you posted and be sure what you post is not offensive to people reading them. Hint: Review the post as if you were a 20 – 40 – or 60 year old reading them. If all three age groups won’t be offended, you’re good.
  2. Be interested in people and friends. Social media is a two-way highway. It’s important to be engaged with others online. Don’t be one-sided where you’re constantly talking about yourself and never asking about others. Interact with friends, comment on their posts and pictures. Hint: If you notice a friend promoting a service or product, ask how you can help, or be there to wish them the best. You never know when you will need them for the same.
  3. Kindness is contagious, it starts with us. What have you done for your cyber-friends lately? As a role-model online, your kids are watching. Did someone lose a pet? A loved one? Maybe you were an upstander when you saw someone struggling with harassment. Did you reach-out to someone when they posted about a bad day? Hint: While scrolling through your social feeds, you may see some missed opportunities, however it’s never too late for kindness.

Our digital behavior is going to be our legacy, whether it’s for our young people or ourselves. It’s important we all think twice – post once and remember that there’s no rewind online.