In all my years of blogging and social media use, I don’t think I’ve ever directly suggested to anyone what they should share or what they should not share—except one time that I reminded someone about compassion.
Don’t get me wrong; in the privacy of my own space, I react negatively to some things, but that’s as far as it goes.
While I value Truth, there is something I value even more.
Freedom of expression.
Even for things that I don’t agree with, and even for things that are wrong or false. I would rather live in a place where we are free to express anything. It’s the artist in me. It’s what makes me a blogger instead of a journalist, I suppose.
It’s not alright for one person to use their freedom of expression to cancel out someone else’s, but it is acceptable to encourage kindness and discourage hate, ridicule, and excessive criticism.
I’ve given a lot of thought to that. That’s where compassion comes in.
When I don’t like something someone else communicates, I exercise compassion when I don’t respond—I don’t hit the like button and I don’t comment publicly. If anything, I will turn to a private message with them.
As I sense a shift toward negativity now in my online spaces, the best thing I can do is invest more energy in compassion.
I’m making an investment right now to keep quiet while people vent their frustrations at me. I may not be able to fix what’s wrong with the world or what’s wrong with their experience, but I can admit when I’ve done something wrong. I can listen, and I can ask thoughtful questions.
That is compassion.