Have you ever thought about the power of your words and how they make others feel?
Last week I wrote about summer reading tips. When I posted my blog and the Bit I made to go with it, someone commented how lucky I was to have books to read over the summer. The comment mentioned kids who weren’t as fortunate. The week before, I posted a Bit for a class and someone commented he didn’t like the feminist message on my t-shirt and it was probably just a political move by my mum.
All week long my brain went back to these comments again and again. I thought about how my posts are perceived by followers. I talked about it with a lot of people. I wanted to understand why followers thought I didn’t understand the needs of other kids or what the word feminist means.
It bothered me so much.
Sometimes grown ups don’t give kids enough credit. They think they can say things that won’t stick with us. They think we don’t understand when their comments are cutting or snide. Sometimes grown ups take out an injustice they feel on other people, and when those people are kids, they expect us to just take it.
Here’s the thing, I use my blog, social media, and the Bits I make to share my HOPE with the world. I DO know not all kids have the same opportunities. I spend a lot of time feeling worries for other kids. I wish kids everywhere had the same kinds of experiences with books that I do. I know this isn’t always possible, but that is also one of the reasons why I started LivBits. I think when kids hear messages from other kids, they listen more, and they get hopeful and inspired, too.
Grown ups needs to stop insulting kids. I do know what feminist means. My mum doesn’t force me to wear messages on my shirts; I LOVE TO WEAR MESSAGES ON MY SHIRTS! The feminist shirt I was wearing in that Bit was a gift from a special friend, not a political ploy by my mum.
I feel sad that I have to defend silly things, but I also want to make the point that people should care more about their words. Words can lower or LIFT people; cause pain or JOY; confusion or UNDERSTANDING; make someone cry or LAUGH. Your words can write on someone else’s soul.
What was good about those comments? They made me think more about the world, people, kids, and the power of words. On social media, your words are always PUBLIC. This means they carry meaning to more than just the person you direct them to. This also means that you should THINK before you comment: Is this helpful, kind, and true? Sometimes people don’t think they have to be aware of how THEIR comments impact OTHER people. Being a good digital citizen means you always consider others – they ARE real people, with real feelings.
My friend Kristin calls me LivLOV. I like this nickname for lots and lots of reasons. The biggest one is because it has intention. It’s like it reminds me to live a life of love everyday AND give love to the world. I feel like the mission OF LivBits is TO LivLOV.
I think about my words and comments as a chance to LivLOV and I hope you do too. Thank you to all the followers who get me, who get love, and, who LivLOV. Those are the followers who matter most.
Keep Reading! Keep Thinking! And, thank you for following LivBits!