Succeeding Through Social Networking by Japheth Omojuwa

‘‘I feel like getting a f***.’’, ‘‘I just got laid.’’, ‘‘My life is useless’’… are just a few of the updates you get on facebook, twitter, myspace, ning …you know them don’t you? The thing about such puerility is that it shows you for who you are. It sort of sells you the way you don’t want to be bought. You should learn to see each status update or tweet as a statement you are making before a friend who is directly before you (and who does not know you well enough). The fact that you are not seen does not mean that what you write is not being read and in fact heard. People read such stuff but in truth they hear your personality loud and clear.

It is important to define the essence of your presence on these platforms. Like your presence here on earth, you should define why you go online. When you do, you’d be conscious of each update on your timeline, you’d weigh up your responses to other people’s updates. I am all for fun because part of life’s essence is to have fun or else it will bore me more than an inept Nigerian politician can. We can have fun without exhibiting parts of us that seem to sell us out as cheap, irresponsible, childish and in exceptional cases utterly stupid. Don’t be fooled, people are succeeding and engaging in worthwhile talk, while some waste away their lives doing everything but nothing to improve their chances of succeeding with people. I know a few friends that through their statements online, I can define where they’ll fit in the public. I like updates by a friend of mine, Sensei-Bola Olajumoke. He comes out as hard, straight, sometimes unconventional but what I see in him is sheer sincerity. Here’s someone that says it just as it is. I have also got a Seth Ologbo who shares his faith and a Folashade Ayanwale who shares food recipes. I even stumbled on a female friend who posts nude pictures of herself because of her profession but that’s because she’s marketing her ‘‘wares’’. So I am not here talking about morality or its absence. I am just saying, sell yourself well enough because people know pretence when they read one especially when it shows itself for that over and again day by day.

My girlfriend ran off with my best friend after a relationship of 4 years…Oh how I miss myfriend.

I won’t even tell you I have not been guilty of some uncharacteristic updates, but most of the time I ensure it is the real me that comes across. The real me is cultured, having been trained through chivalry and truth (thanks to King’s College lol), the real me is caring and humble…well depending on your own level of self esteem. The real you is who people see and read online. The internet has become the other world, the new world. Social networking sites are now the largest community for global interaction and relationship. These sites have been responsible for transactions in upwards of billions of dollars if not trillions. Folks have had their lives changed merely by the connections they make on social networking sites. I have made some of my most important connections through these networks. I met some of my most important friends through Facebook. I am not talking about the watered down definition facebook has turned friendship into, I am talking about friends in the classic sense of the word, friends that get into my heart where few can reach.

Life without friendship is like the earth without the sun.

I had a friend call me a few days ago and for  hours we chatted like we had been friends for ages, when in truth we have only been friends through internet pages and only for days. She told me she needed not to know me as she knows enough of me to be relaxed and just get on with relating with me. This is someone who grew in a culture and country entirely different from mine, but we did connect because we had known enough of each other to just share more.

A single candle can illuminate an entire room. A true friend lights up an entire lifetime

I have met with some very important people through my status updates, I have had folks send me mentoring requests because of my notes and of course I have had more than enough requests for serious and casual relationships. The questions you should ask yourself is, what do I portray through each statement I share? What kind of videos and materials do I share? What picture will your personality form in the minds of those who do not know you besides these platforms of exchange? When we read words, we cinematize them into mental videos and before long you see people for who they are, without necessarily meeting them physically.

Like life though, we must entertain our individual differences. We must accommodate our shortcomings but for those of us that care about our public image, then it’s important you go through your albums again to see the ones that tend to portray you in ways you are not. Being yourself is not about being stupid and thinking that’s who you really are, it is about taking the lessons of each day and imbibing new knowledge into your daily use of words and actions. For those that feel unwanted, uncared for and deserted by everybody, you should ask yourself if you have been caring enough. A friend complained to me that people don’t get involved with his notes or updates and the only question I asked him was how well he gets involved in the affairs of others.

Getting people to like you is merely the other side of liking them (J.C.Maxwell)

See, life gives back to you in folds what you give into it. Someone once said, If there’s anything better than being loved, it is loving. I believe it.

Friends, let us evaluate what we do with the opportunity the internet has offered us. Do you know that when you are busy wasting your time online, someone else is busy closing a deal. An old friend of mine jokingly called me a Facebook merchant, he is not entirely wrong because I am one, but it is not just Facebook, it is everything I can get from using the internet that makes me a merchant. It is becoming increasingly certain that I’ll announce my girl friend’s name first to my online friends before anyone else *smiling* (jokes) but really and truly they are always first to know how and what I feel (especially my twitter followers). I am glad that is not something I will be doing anytime soon because…I am just not prepared for that. Make the best of every opportunity, the internet is the biggest of such and remember that whether or not you get a comment or reply to whatever you do, people are watching (or reading, or even listening a la skype). Be Better, read this, learn and be the friend sharing it with other friends. It’s all about evolving into the excellent you. Cheers

You can follow Japheth on twitter @omojuwa