For all its faults (and there are many) social media has many benefits and if used correctly can be an asset in a variety of ways.

Depending on which platform you are using the goal is often very different.  I use Facebook and Twitter on a daily basis and jump in on Instagram from time-to-time and the three are very different.

Facebook is probably what most adults are familiar with and especially older adults…say over the age of 35 or 40.  The #1 benefit is the ability to connect with people while maintaining or even building relationships.  I have been able to catch up with friends from high school, even those who live 3,000 miles away and reflect on moments from decades ago while sharing current news, some good and yes some sad but at least connecting in an easy way.

Facebook is a great way to share photos of what’s happening in your life, wish someone a happy birthday or speedy recovery from surgery and simply stay in touch.  It is also a great tool to try and spread the word about a fundraiser for a noble cause with your friends and contacts sharing it with theirs and at the end of the day it can allow you to make a positive impact in lightning-quick fashion.

However like everything else in life it has its drawbacks and among them is not to believe that everything you read and see on Facebook and other social media sites is 100% gospel.  You can’t take everything as being true because there are some you use social media more as a way to convey THEIR opinions and thoughts rather than facts so tread carefully.

Unfortunately because of the times we live in social media has too often been used for political debate which often turns into political hate.  It is for that reason many have removed themselves from the mix while others simply stay away from anything negative.

I will admit to having one problem with Facebook and that is how to handle “friend” requests from those you really don’t know.  In most cases I find there is a mutual connection but if often puts you in a rather uncomfortable position of having to delete a request from someone who wants to be your friend.  I have no good answer to this and I say that having just deleted two requests although at the same time I confirmed two others.

What a dilemma!