Are you guilty of oversharing? Do you post the most intimate details of your life on social media? Are you the person in the grocery store who tells random strangers about your hernia while choosing produce?
Most of us have some type of presence on the internet. If you’re reading this then you obviously use at least a few social media platforms. So what do you choose to share with the world? Pictures of your children, your pets, what you had for dinner? Do you use it to promote your business or creative endeavors? What about just keeping in touch with relatives and friends in faraway places?
There are as many reasons for being online as there are people logging on every day. Some of us do share a bit too much for other people to feel comfortable. But have you ever stopped to wonder why we might be sharing so much? Granted there are narcissists who think we should all be privileged to know the size of the hairball their cat hacked up last night. And we’re all familiar with the person who has something to sell that bombards the world with repetitive posts about their product until we’re sick of seeing them.
There is another group of people who share a lot of themselves because it is the way they process emotional data. Many things we experience are small in the grand scheme of life. But other things can be overwhelming. How do you handle the big stuff that makes you tremble inside? How do you cope with a situation you may have limited control over? Sometimes, for some people, sharing that burden, speaking of it aloud to other people, helps to make it a little smaller. It brings the mountain back down to a molehill. It’s not always about telling total strangers that you’re having back spasms. It’s more about letting off the emotional pressure of dealing with chronic pain.
It’s not posting just to whine and complain about how you feel or your situation. It’s meditating out loud. It’s not posting cat pictures so you feel like you’re part of a group. It’s hearing other people say they feel the same thing. It’s okay, you’re not alone.
Oversharing does happen every day. Next time you see someone posting personal stuff, stop and think about what that person is experiencing. You probably don’t know what they’ve been through. And if you do, let them know. It may be the connection that gives them hope of making it through another day.