Leaving Facebook To Boost Creativity [PART 1]
Remember the time when someone would ask you “Are you on Facebook?”. This question was at one point asked a million times per day. Now, the question has slightly changed into something like “Shall we keep in touch on Facebook?” Its funny to see how Facebook popped out like jack and overgrew the internet like weed in matter of years. Because of this we can clearly see the differences between our ‘Facebookless era’ and our ‘Facebook era’ right now. And boy, it has had its impact!
I strongly believe Facebook is influencing our overall creativity and our ways of idea development significantly. This is something our western world can’t afford as creativity is becoming our most distinctive trading good. I will share my vision on this matter in 3 posts and wrap them up with a few tips to keep creativity alive and kicking!
My First Experience With Facebook
Let me first share a little experience with you: I signed up on Facebook for the first time in 2007 when I still lived in London. To me Facebook was a brilliant tool to connect with new cool people since I came to London all by myself with just my job to make the first connections. I quickly met new folk, started playing in a band and went out almost every other night. So I do see the benefits here as I personally experienced them. What I will discuss here is all based on living a ‘normal life’ as a person that spends his time living close to friends & family. Globetrotters, expats and immigrants are kindly excluded from my theory
I will discuss the following topics:
- Digital personality versus analog personality
- Your physical surroundings and time spend when on Facebook
- Your level of intelligence and feelings when on Facebook
Digital personality versus analog personality
Do you remember MySpace? God, that was fun! For everyone who don’t know: it was the social media era BEFORE Facebook. You could check out people for the first time without them even knowing it. That was magic! We all became instant voyeurs and loved every second of it. What also stood out were all the extreme posed photos of guys and girls holding their cam above their head while looking flirtatious into the lens. I think over 50% of all profile pics had someone’s face doing a serious smokey stare. I guess I tried to look cool in a way too, but most probably failed terribly with my long alternative hairdo and boney limbs.
As MySpace has made way for ‘the book’ (Facebook), these overacted facial expressions slightly tempered, thank God. But when you look closely they haven’t really left after all. They have just evolved towards an acceptable level. It’s these profile pictures that shape our digital personality. The picture is all about “How do you want OTHERS to see and know you?”
Example: one person poses a sexy look, another shows of being a rock star and another poses as a serious emo boy. Most of us still find it very much necessary to look different on Facebook then from who they are in real-life. I often don’t recognize people in their profile picture. It’s funny to see how everyone is so busy with their online appearance, I still even catch myself doing this and it’s freaking mental when I think about it!
Search Trends on Profile Pictures
I did a little research in the Google Keyword Tool on the term ‘cool profile picture’. Here you see how often people globally search on this term per month (22,200 times!) – Date of research: 12 January 2012.
Differences Between ‘The Real You’ And ‘The Facebook You’
When you compare your profile with the real you, what differences do you see? And what do you think about this? Well, I see heaps of differences. The differences are luckily not in total contrast with each other. That would make you almost schizophrenic. But what I do notice is that we try to picture ourselves ‘cooler’ than we personally think we are. It is this TRYING to picture ourselves differently that makes me tired when I even think of it. People who try to picture themselves cooler than who they are clearly showing signs of insecurity. And it’s this insecurity that gets in the way of the creativity of which there is so much of in you. Look around the world and notice that most creatively successful people show themselves boringly normal.
As new creativity is within each person that’s in positive terms with oneself, an extra digital personality can undo this without one even knowing it. Before I go into a little advise, we’re not leaving Facebook yet. I don’t want to force anyone into doing anything radical this early this year. So you’re safe, my readers are not going cold turkey
My advise to those who are interested: Let’s stick with one personality. To start, let someone else select your profile picture and only login on Facebook once per day at 5pm. Not more, not less. Test this for a month or so and let me know what your experiences are. Good luck!
Ps. This thread continuous with two more parts, hurray! Check it out:
- PART 2: Your physical surroundings and time spend when on Facebook
- PART 3: Your level of intelligence and feelings when on Facebook