Confessions of a Forty-Three-Year-Old Social Butterfly

This is a sponsored post by Grammarly.

Photograph by Tonia Allen Gould
Photograph by Tonia Allen Gould

If you are a friend of mine on Facebook, then you’d know that I live my life fairly openly and somewhat transparently. I’m the first to laugh and poke fun at myself when something humorous has happened to me by attempting to be witty on my wall. I revel in it when I make you laugh because I like to be funny. When you laugh at something I’ve done or said; you have paid me the biggest compliment of all. By the same token, I have no problem posting some ridiculously stupid thing I did, (like the time I pumped unleaded fuel into my Diesel tank), and have no qualms plastering that on my wall where it might seep permanently into the bowels of the internet, perhaps into perpetuity, and for the world to see. I’m okay with that because I want you to know who I really am, not some person I want the world to see.

When I’ve had a bad day, I try to seek resolve and clarity in what happened and hopefully teach myself or others a thing or two so that maybe, together, we can even learn from my mistakes. Know that I am learning from yours. If you really understand who I am as a person, then you’ll distinguish that I always try to keep things as positive as possible because I never want my problems to become yours, but if I’m going through an especially tough time, you can count on the fact that I’m going to share it. Friends are healing and words are powerful. Equally, I hope I can be there to ease your pain in your time of need. The weight of the world is too big to carry it alone.

Know that I’m visiting your wall as often as I can, or I’m picking up stories from the newsfeed and working hard to discover who you really are, too because I want to hear about your life, and read about your achievements. I’m going to miss some big things in your life because I wasn’t ON when you mentioned them. If it’s something you really want me to know about, and I haven’t commented, please pick-up the phone and call me.  Sadly, because of where you live, I may have to admire you from afar, and the phone or Facebook is our only real means of communication.  If you’re in San Francisco when I meet with Nick from Grammarly, please join us for coffee.  That’s how you build your network, and I also don’t know if he’s an axe murderer or not, so you’d be helping me out.  Protection in numbers, I always say.

Facebook is a journal. When you make a post, you are chronicling your life in some way, and chances are if we are “friends,” I respect or admire you. By living your life well, or at least as best you can, you can count on me to appreciate and never judge the things you have to say. I hope you respect and admire the life I lead as well, but be sure that I know that I can’t please everyone, nor will everyone “like” me or what I have to say, and that’s okay. Kindly also note that, although few and far between, some of you may have turned me off by posting negative comments about the people in your life who came into yours with some degree of baggage. I can’t help worry that if you discard some fallible, vulnerable human for being fallible and vulnerable, and you did this publicly, you might discard me just as carelessly too. I’m not too keen on public embarrassment, and the good Lord knows, I’m fallible and vulnerable, too. All humans are. If you are one of these people who like to air your dirty laundry on Facebook, please stop it.  Smack your face until it turns blue the next time you contemplate doing it again.  Facebook is not a platform for this, the Jerry Springer Show is.  Public humiliation is a low blow, and I could harp on this all day.  At least be kind enough to judge or admonish others quietly, and to yourself, or more politely by considering doing it directly to their faces. I can admire someone who stands up face-to-face to others for being personally wronged.

I’m a boastful mother, and I know this. I brag about my children when they’ve reached a milestone or accomplished something in their lives. They are a cornerstone in mine and frankly, I am smitten and consumed by them. It’s true; I’m proud of myself for raising them well , and for—I’m going to say it, and I knock on wood, for getting them through life so far, pretty much unscathed. Truth be told, from where I sit, if they fart, they might as well be sprouting cute, furry bunnies from their adorable, round little rumpuses. They are perfect in my eyes. I made them, and I am proud of Hubs and me for that. Again, I can’t help being boastful. Please do me a favor and brag about your kids more often, so that I can feel better about myself.

I celebrate big, too. I work hard, and I love to talk about the milestones or accomplishments I’ve made in my life because since an early age, I had to advocate and pat myself on the back. I grew up knowing that I have to love myself first, so I can learn to love others more. Here again, when you pat me on the back and say, “Good job,” that’s one of the highest compliments you can pay me. If you knew my background, as some of you do, you would know that I’ve had to overcome much to be where I am today, and well, darn it, I’m proud of whom I have become. Perhaps I do push myself too hard, too often. But, if you are “friends” of mine on Facebook, please believe me when I say that I love to hear all about your accomplishments, where you’ve been, where you’re going, and what you’re doing—as much as I like to talk about my own.   I see it every day on Facebook, there are people reaching out and looking for words of encouragement.  I’m blessed.  I have lots of great friends who support and encourage me often.  Every now and then give someone with fewer “friends” that all important nudge of encouragement.  Consider your life to be enriched when someone shares their blessings with you.

I believe that Facebook, at least for me, has become my conduit for self-expression. So, I just really try and be myself.  As a public speaker who sometimes talks about advocating Social Media, I have heard all sorts of philosophies on what works and what doesn’t. I understand the “Do’s and Don’ts” and all about meeting expectations on how to express oneself correctly when using social platforms. But, what I’ve really learned is this: There is no perfect, in a nutshell, way to lead your live socially.  Not to sound cliché, but I encourage you to just stay true to yourself without bashing other people.  (I told you, I could go on and on about this.)

Below are my personal, albeit essential, Social Media Strategies on How I Like to Conduct Myself on Six Social Media Platforms:

LinkedIn: Be Professional, Build Your Network and Explore. The days of the job hunt and cold call are over if you use the network wisely.

Facebook: Be Discriminate about Whom You Let into Your Network, So You Can Be Personal.  I posted about errant panties ending up the laundry tonight.  It’s a funny story.

Twitter: Be Personal and Professional. Be Professional Most of the Time.  Post frequent and meaningful content that appeals to a wide audience.  Follow people smarter than you.

Pinning is loads of fun. I advocate having loads of fun.

Instagram: Have Fun. Show the World Your Inner-Photographer and Videographer.  Note:  I’m personally bored with cat posts.

WordPress: Life’s a Crazy Journey, So Write about It.  Start a Blog.

Author: Tonia Allen Gould

Tonia Allen Gould is the CEO of Tagsource, a 25-year-old Consumer Promotions and Marketing Agency, she's founder of the Finding Corte Magore Project, and children's book author of Samuel T. Moore of Corte Magore. Here, on this blog, she writes about whatever compels her at the moment. In her book, she explores the concepts of perseverance, hard work, bullying, and finding a place to call home for young readers. The impetus of the Finding Corte Magore project stems from Tonia's background - growing-up below the poverty line, in rural Indiana. A product of Indiana's foster care system, she is the first to say that books, a solid education and teachers, taught her there was a life for herself, tangible and within her reach, she just had to reach out and grab it. After publishing her first book, she decided she wanted to find an island and make it real, by naming it after the fictional place in her book, “Corte Magore,” and utilize it for social and environmental good. Today, the 29-acre island of Corte Magore at Hog Cay, Nicaragua- through a joint partnership with Ambassador Francisco Campbell, the Nicaraguan Ambassador to the U.S.-will be utilized by the Finding Corte Magore Project to work to keep Nicaraguan children in school. The Finding Corte Magore Project works virtually to connect a global community of students and institutions with the plight of educationally and economically repressed Nicaragua. The project involves showcasing and managing one of the country's own beautiful islands in its educational and environmental initiatives. The goal of The Finding Corte Magore Project is to create social awareness coupled with building a sustainable, positive and long-term educational impact on the country's children who have an on-average fifth grade dropout rate. In addition, Tonia is a promotional products industry veteran. She is the founder and CEO of 25-year old Tagsource, LLC (AKA TAG! The Creative Source). She currently serves on the BOD for the Specialty Advertising Association of California (SAAC), is an "Industry Voice", a recipient of a PPAI Golden Pyramid, and has been named on ASI’s Hot List. She is the recipient of Supplier of the Year award through the Women’s Business Enterprise Council West, as nominated by Fortune 500 companies.

2 thoughts on “Confessions of a Forty-Three-Year-Old Social Butterfly”

  1. I like how you compare some people’s use of facebook to the Jerry springer show, i think this is one reason I have taken to rarely going on Facebook and next to never writing a status as I prefer the atmosphere on wordpress.


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