Are you part of the social media revolution? It seems everywhere I go I am surrounded by folks taking selfies, posting, pinning, instagramming, you name it. My own daughter Lilia cannot touch her meal in a restaurant until she has posed her food professionally, taken a good photo of it, and posted it on the hot social media site du jour. I feel so behind the times-Facebook, Tumblr, Snap Chat, Twitter-those are only the ones I know about, I am sure there are tons more. Then there's the video sharing like YouTube, Vines and the latest live feed Periscope. As I am becoming more tuned in I am finding tons of folks using these platforms to share whatever they are doing, seeing, tasting, you name it. To be frank, I am not sure how they have the time-taking the photo or video, editing, adding a filter, adding a caption, adding the hashtags, over and over again...OMG-I'm stressed just thinking about it.
As a blogger, I want to connect with my readers and the best way to do that without a doubt is social media. Recently I met with social media guru and lifestyle blogger Ciaran Blumenfeld (pronounced Sharon) of Momfluential. The goal was to learn how to Instagram so I could share photos of my upcoming road trip and offer my readers another way to get useful information and introduce new folks to Explore All 50. She asked me if I was pinning (Pinterest), posting videos on YouTube or making Vines, and Tweeting among others, "uh no, maybe a little, honestly I am not quite sure how".... My head was spinning, it was so overwhelming I just couldn't keep up....The more I thought about it and spoke with Ciaran the more I realized I could spend an entire day just communicating via social media platforms, in fact it truly could be a full time job-and one as a single mom I just don't have the time to do. Ciaran has a social media consulting business and in addition to being an awesome mom and blogger, is a master of just about every social media platform there is. As I sat with Ciaran I started to feel super inadequate, but then I stopped myself and realized I was missing something really important.
Taking a step back I decided I don't want to be so obsessed with social media that I forget to live in the moment. The value of every experience in our travels is not based on how many likes and thumbs up or comments I get-it's how it makes me feel inside, the lessons my children and I learn in real time, and the wonderful memories we make together. If it makes a great photo or post- fantastic! If I can figure out how to share it and attract more readers, even better. But not at the cost of missing something awesome, or time with my kids, or feeling stressed.
My true passion is to inspire more families to travel with their kids and explore our great nation and that is what drives The Explore All 50 Project blog. There is no doubt social media is here to stay and it is an amazing way to connect and get my message out to more folks than I could ever know. Like me dear readers, I hope you approach social media sharing within a healthy balance, for it is only when we experience everything fully with all our senses captivated in the moment that we can truly share it from the heart-and that is the best and most sincere sharing of all.