Guest: Wednesday Noir: An Introverts Guide to Navigating the Negative on Twitter

Please welcome the amazing Wednesday Noir with some excellent advice regarding negativity on social media.

It’s no secret if you follow me on Twitter that I’m an agoraphobe. I’m also extremely introverted. The only socializing I do is on Twitter. Is it healthy by most people’s standards? No. But I’m a happy hermit, and that will most likely never change.

But being an introverted hermit comes with a unique set of challenges when being active on social media. Especially on an anonymous platform like Twitter. A comment from a reader or even another writer can send me spiraling down a dark hole of self-doubt. Worrying about how you are being perceived is tiring; it fills you with self-consciousness.

I can’t be the only introverted writer who has trouble dealing with social media negativity, so I want to share a short list of things I do to combat the negative.

Number One – This one is the hardest, so grab a bottle of water or a cuppa and sit down. We’re going to rip off that figurative band-aid and move on. Not everyone is going to like you. It’s that simple. Be it a reader or another writer there will be someone who dislikes you. It hurts, but you could be the brightest star on the darkest night, and someone, somewhere will be put off.

That’s perfectly fine. You are the perfect you. So if someone is just outright rude, or makes you uncomfortable. Maybe give them one chance if they deserve it. Everyone has a bad day after all. But don’t be afraid to hit that block button as often as you need.

No one is entitled to ruining your day.

Number Two – Remember tone isn’t always clear in text. There could be a miscommunication on your end or theirs. If you’re cynical or sarcastic, toss in an emoji or two that way people understand what you said is a joke or at least shouldn’t be taken seriously.

Emojis are a great way to convey tone and can help a little with casual misunderstandings.

Number Three – This one is important to remember. Negativity can bring the negative to you. As I said before, everyone has a bad day. We can’t be happy all the time. A mad/sad/down tweet once in a while is normal.

But try to present your feelings in a relatable way. If you do, you’ll be greeted with understanding, warmth, and support. A simple ‘I’m down today send cute gifs’ goes a long way. Give people a chance to support you and offer your own support often.

It’ll brighten your mood and theirs. Everyone wants to be the one to put a smile on a friend’s face. And let’s face it, being a writer is a special blend of self-torture and gratification. We all need support on those bad days when the words just aren’t coming together the way we want.

So, don’t be afraid to ask for support or give it.

Number Four – Don’t respond to negativity. This one is easier to say than to do. Chances are eventually someone will be mean. But if they aren’t rude enough to warrant a stiff, hard block just ignore it.

Arguing online is like screaming into an empty room. No one is listening while keyboard screaming at a stranger. Their minds are made up before you even respond, and you’re not going to change anyone’s opinion about you or your post.

If they continue despite your non-response consider blocking, or at the very least muting. The mute button is handy.

Number Five – Perfection doesn’t exist. Eventually, you will be caught in a social media faux-pas. Whether it’s a misunderstanding or a slip-up. That’s all right though. You’re still a good person. So unless you kick someone’s dog, things will get better.

There will be bad days that will leave you wondering if you should just delete Twitter altogether. Don’t delete, ride things out. Apologize if needed. This is your community you deserve to be here just like everyone else.

Social media is important to writers. We connect to readers and network with other writers. People want to know about you, and your work. Stay for those people.

Number Six – If you are going through some sort of social media drama. Turn off the notifications on your phone, close the internet browser. Walk away figuratively or literally for a while. That way you don’t have to look at it until you are ready to.

It gives you time to think, form a response, or an apology if needed. Just take time to get any emotions in check.

Number Seven – Don’t be afraid to take a break. A break can be a day, two, or three. However long you need. Social media is exhausting at times. So keep your mind refreshed or it will drain your mood.

There are third party sites you can use to schedule posts. Figure out which one works for you and use it if needed.

Number Eight – Self-care. Remember most of us have day jobs, family, a full personal life. Not to mention having characters screaming at you to have their stories told. Take time for yourself. Introverts need quiet time. So enjoy a relaxing bath, a glass of wine, a cup of tea or coffee.

Whether it’s just five or ten minutes in the morning or at night while the house is quiet. Don’t write, don’t read, don’t look at social media, don’t even think about writing. Don’t do anything but just enjoy your company.

That’s it; that’s how this social hermit combats the negativity on social media. Things will never be perfect, but if you take care of yourself, social media can be a warm, beautiful place.

Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Be the authentic you, and you will draw the people you want to you.

If you enjoyed this post, follow Wednesday Noir on Twitter and find out what other kind of awesome things she’s got going on. And don’t forget to check out her Amazon page – she might have the perfect story waiting for you.

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