Have you ever dated someone who you really liked, things are going great until that person sees a provocative picture of your ex in your car?  Or you make a crude joke about your boss not realizing the boss is right behind you?   Or you comment on Facebook about how your students are “future criminals” like this person? Something like this has happened to all of us to some extent.  However, those that are most successful in life are the ones that avoid landmines like this.

In life you have to be yourself.  If your funny, keep telling jokes.  If you like hanging out with your friends,  enjoy.   Like to have a couple of drinks and take pictures with great friends, go wild.  When it comes to social media, being personal takes you a long way in building the kinds of relationships that are fruitful for all those involved.  However, in life, you have to strike a successful balance with your personal and professional life.  The same applies with social media.

It all depends on what your goals are when you use social media.    Take Facebook and Twitter; the key to those sites is sharing (like most sites). People share their interests through status updates, pictures, videos and sharing websites.   We hope one of your goals is to get involved with important issues in your community and/or advance your cause. Which means measuring what you share about yourself is very important.   What you share reflects who you are, such as:

What do you think about this guy?

What do you think about this group?

What if I told you the guy in the orange hat is the same person?    Would you have thought that the first guy was capable of such great work?  Or the second person is a fan of downing two bottles at once?  What do you think potential employers or donors would think?

Fortunately, there are no relationship between these two pictures, but the point remains the same. It can be worthwhile when you share with your friends and family.  Its rewarding pushing for a cause online but remember, people will read into what you share.  Don’t let this post scare you, just watch your step.

And DONT be this guy!!!