This will have a little to do with Ed Sheeran and a lot to do with life and personal communication.
For better or for worse, I sometimes fall into contemplations about life and how things happen, people act and think, and most often than not – I think about my own life. This is just going to be one of those brain splurges of mine, so if you are in the mood for a light read, I’d skip it for now, but save it for later. (Don’t skip altogether! Jokes – you do you :)).
So have you heard about Ed Sheeran?
He seems to be one of the most down-to-earth artist out there, or at least the most ordinary one from the bunch I know anything about. I may not have it chronologically correct, but from various interviews and things I’ve read about him, I got a very good impression of him. Turns out that at some point in his life he decided to stop using his phone and do emails instead. He goes to ordinary bars for drinks with his friends. Allows himself to take a break and just enjoy life. I even read that when he broke/hurt his hand he had to cancel some concerts. Of course, there were people who suggested he hires someone to play the guitar instead of him, but he didn’t because making music and not only singing is part of what he is.
Why am I so impressed by that and what came out of it
Nowadays you rarely meet “ordinary” people, who have done well. People who have not been taken over by the whole craziness of modern days. My husband is a bit like that. He doesn’t have a social media account and is very human, while being excellent at whatever he does. I sometimes want to be like him, and am happy to have him next to me to keep me grounded.
Anyways, so back on the matter of social media and communicating with each other. I come from a country where FB is very popular and if you don’t have an account, you’re considered a social outcast. I have one. I don’t use it to share personal info, however. I have 393 “friends” there and talk privately to maybe 10 of them (three of whom are my relatives – parents and a sister). It wasn’t always like that.
Here’s what made me change.
I was back in my hometown and met a girl on the street that I knew from my time at UNI. The first thing (and only one really) she told me was “Congratulations on your wedding!”. Now, we’ve never been close, but she knew I got married and did not bother to ask me how I was doing. She just straight away shot me with the information she had on me. I knew she had 2 kids, but still asked her how life was going for her, and she did not respond with much information, as she assumed I knew it all. And I did. Unfortunately, that was a very short encounter and we went our separate ways, just because we knew everything about each other and there was not much left to communicate about.
That made me deliberately stop using FB to share personal things. I only share things that I’d like to come back to. Or maybe I use it as a pinboard. In addition to that, I also participate in a few groups and get a lot of useful information from them, as well as share my personal experience in attempt to help others. But that’s it.
On my birthday, less and less people every year write on my wall to say Happy Birthday. To these very few ones I now try to respond personally and ask them in return how life’s treating them, trying to strike a conversation. Not everyone responds. Many just leave it as it is, which makes me question why they wrote in the first place. But the ones who do respond, we mostly manage to have a pleasant conversation and catch up. I missed that. I miss talking to people, sharing and listening back to their stories.
Paperless Post, anyone?
Birthdays are a good excuse to start the conversation again. And I don’t mean writing on somebody’s FB wall, congratulating them on meeting another year in their life. Remember the “greeting card” thing? I know I used to hate it when I was younger, and was always looking for prewritten wishes to include. Now it’s a different story. I try to make every message unique to the person it is meant for.
Unfortunately, most of my very close friends and family members are too far away, and after a number of unsuccessful attempts to use the old-fashioned mail (No offence, Royal mail. The problem is usually at the other end in Eastern Europe) Paperless Post came up. Among all the items they offer, my favourite things are their greeting cards. You can choose from various, gorgeous designs, to suit every taste, or make your own. And the best part is at the other end it comes up as a gentle animation of the card, slipping out of the envelope, and revealing your message. Best part is – you don’t need to look for a place to store it, but still get to keep it. That’s right up my street.
So go ahead and check Paperless Post. In the meantime, don’t be a poster – be a conversation. Be Ed Sheeran.
You might think – What the ***** was that all about. You write a personal blog and have an IG account where you share a lot about yourself. Not that I need an excuse for that, but I want to make things clear. The truth is this account does not bare my real name for a reason – I use it to make new contacts with people whom I wouldn’t have met otherwise. I also still want to share in some way interesting things from my life, and if they become the reason for opening to a new encounter – I’m in. Only the 10 people I mentioned above know about my “other identity” and they mostly know about the things I share beforehand.
If you haven’t seen the video to the I Don’t Care song – I’d suggest you do, because it is exactly what I’m on about in here – back to basics. Here it is – video.