Feeling Starstruck

Apart from a few What’s App messages, I choose not to use social media.  Except Twitter; I like Twitter.  Oh, let’s be honest – I completely adore Twitter!  Most Twitter interactions are related to my professional interests and most people I connect with are linked to my field of work.  Every so often an interaction on Twitter,  a “follow”, a “like” or even a “re-tweet”, feels exciting  because of who the person is.  Sometimes they are well-known people in their professional arena. Other times, they may be people who I hold in high regard, usually because of their values or commitment to their work. Either way, the starstruck feeling prevails.  I watch others on Twitter responding the same way – feeling starstruck as a result of a “like,” a “re-tweet,” or a “follow” by someone they have a lot of respect for.

Colleagues speak of the damaging effects of giving too much importance to “likes” and “follows”.  People’s sense of self-worth can become very closely connected to the interactions they have on social media. By giving other people power in this way, it can create hierarchy and imbalance.  Other colleagues comment that people only Tweet the “good bits” in life, so Twitter is not a true representation of the ups and downs as a result, which can affect people’s well-being.

I began to think about all this when someone sent a message saying someone they thought highly of had made their day by re-Tweeting them.  I began to think about how prevalent hero-worshipping is on Twitter, how many of us do it.  I realised a few things – perhaps while trying to both rationalise and validate the starstruck hero-worshipping that happens on Twitter….

……I realised hero-worship has always gone on; social media is just the newest platform for it.

……I realised by showing mostly the “good bits” people can showcase their best side which can have a positive effect – helping others feel lifted by their enthusiasm and optimism while giving them something to aspire towards, including best practice, for example.

…..I realised the people I feel starstruck by on Twitter are people who make a magnificent effort every day to help the world feel a safer, brighter place for children to grow up.

Most of all, I realised I feel starstruck by those who truly are sparkling stars.  How fortunate I am to have so many incredible people to interact with and learn from every day?  How fantastic is it that there are so many wonderful people around who are committed to helping improve things for children and families so tirelessly?  I wish everyone had people they felt starstruck by, people who make great contributions to humanity, no matter how big or small, people they feel humbled by, and appreciative to be sharing the planet with.

I am grateful to all of you for what you bring to each day and would like to quote @CSE_DC  ….

“You’re all my superheroes.”