Saturday, December 29, 2018


A friend posted a link to a personal inventory exercise she planned to do at the end of the year, in which she tried to list all of the things she had done right in 2018, as well as all of the things she thought she had done wrong. The purpose is to help a person look at their accomplishments as well as failures, in order to both see what went wrong as well as remind himself or herself of what they did well. Doing this can help us maintain skills and strengths and recognize what might need to be changed in the coming year.

Interestingly, one of the sentences I would write about what I did right this year uses the exact same words that would show up in a sentence that describes what I did wrong.

Right: "I deleted almost every political Facebook post I saw, no matter who it came from.

Wrong: "I deleted almost every political Facebook post I saw, no matter who it came from.

As you can see, the question of emphasis matters a great deal. But I certainly know where -- and how -- I can improve in 2019.


PhilipVM said...

My goodness: I can FINALLY disagree with you! Having thought long and hard about FB as a platform for political posts of all stripes - humor, pontification, information - I humbly defend the practice of political posting. Yes, we tend to sing to the choir, and yes, most of the stuff that passes for political argument actually DOESN'T pass, either as fact or rhetoric, but still... When we see what we believe is injustice or immorality, we have an obligation to be outraged, and to inform others. We ought to be able to point and say, "That's happening, and it should not be." But on a more basic level, we share the stuff that's important to us, and that includes what's going on in the world.

I'm certainly guilty of less-than-substantive political posting, at times. I'm also pretty good about accepting those from long as they don't cross certain lines. When they do, there's that handy "unfriend" button...and when they don't, sometimes they even get me to rethink something, or reinforce my own thinking, or enter into a spirited-but-friendly debate.

We are - quite clearly - a divided nation. I'm just not sure that avoiding ALL political content from folks we call friends is really a good step. Or the right thing to do.

(PREACH, Philip!) Heh heh.

Friar said...

I think there's something to that, and I was certainly exaggerating a little.

I have seen several political posts that I feel no need to remove from my feed. They're of all different kinds, but if they had one feature in common I think the poster's-own-words to reposted-linkage ratio would be pretty high on most of them, whether I am pro or con the actual idea involved. I think infrequency would play a role as well. Those aren't the problem. Nor are funny ones, at least not to me.

Problem stuff is what 30 seconds of thinking would make clear is inaccurate or exaggerated. Or doing that ol' Confirmation Bias Boogie with a link from whatever source makes the poster's mouth froth at the moment. Those folks exhausted me when they "proved" Barack Obama was born in Kenya and their counterparts exhaust me "proving" Donald Trump heats his home by burning toys stolen from immigrant children.

Maybe I'll switch to Twitter. I've heard good things... ;-)

PhilipVM said...

Wait: he DOESN'T heat his home with toys stolen from immigrant children?!

Heh heh.

Friar said...

"Traded," not stolen. The greatest deal-maker in history, doncha know.