I’m going to tell you a secret, just between us. Are you ready?

Over the last couple of months, a string of events has occurred that made me question, at various times, whether doing all of this “Social Media stuff” was really the best idea for me. There were moments of frustration, some moments of disappointment, and an awful lot of moments of learning, as we all must learn when we are involved in something that is still so new.

There were a few times when I thought, “Heck, I don’t *need* to do this stuff. It’s not how I make my living. Nobody’s life, in fact, depends on whether I keep on blogging (thank goodness).”

To put it simply, there have been a few times over the last couple of months when I came close to letting various irritations convince me that I should give up my Social Media world. But I am still here. Now how, you might ask, did that happen?

One Word. Love.

In fact, it’s just as simple as this. When I thought that maybe taking “a break” from blogging or Twitter or Facebook would be a good idea, I quickly got a sinking feeling. “But I enjoy engaging with my blog readers,” I thought. “I enjoy writing. I enjoy reading what other people are saying. I think I have good things to say, good things to share, and I have some ideas I want to get out there, too. And I don’t want to pull back just because things got a little icky here and there.”

Don’t find your purpose by almost losing it

Engaging is really important, I happen to believe. But here’s the thing. When you interact and engage with a lot of people, you can get pulled in all kinds of different directions. You can agree to run a project with a person over here or help a person out over there. You can get involved in silly online dramas or find that a person is not really the way you thought they were (in good ways or in bad ways). Engaging is really important, but if it takes you off the path on which you need to travel, it can be dangerous.

So I think it’s important, while engaging, to be a little bit self-centered. That’s not the same thing as being egotistical or selfish or anything like that. It just means that as you head out into the world of Social Media, you need to keep your head straight, your eyes forward, and your heart clear. You need to have your goals in mind and you need to keep working towards them. When you accomplish one of your objectives,  you need to celebrate and then set new ones.

In the end, Social Media engagement is not far different from our day-to-day lives. We need people, and we need to interact with people, but when doing so takes us far off course, we can run into trouble. If you have a life goal, don’t be shy about holding on to that goal even as other people try to move you in different directions.

I love the online world despite, or perhaps because of, all of its crazy quirkiness, but I almost let events and people outside of my control move me away from what I enjoy. For a brief moment, I forgot that what I want to accomplish and achieve matters more than the fact that sometimes it’s super hard, or that some people may not want me to accomplish those things.

Don’t make the same mistake I almost made. Keep yourself centered. Keep yourself a little self-centered. If you do it right, it can be an anchor instead of a turn-off.

What do you think?

This is post #70 in the Engagement Series. I hope you enjoyed this post and are enjoying this series.