When we were kids, we were in a huge rush to grow up, thinking adulthood was where we wanted to be. And now that we’re here, it doesn’t involve nearly as many jet skis and margaritas as I was hoping it would. It’s cold in these streets, but here’s my top 5 list of pointers for making it work:
- Be mindful of how you occur in social media.
Going viral isn’t always a good thing. It can sometimes mean this or it can mean blowing up your life with a stupid tweet. Just ask Justine Sacco. Accidents can happen, but the consequences of making bad choices- especially after a few cocktails- can linger.
- Talk to your children about how they interact in the digital world.
- Watch your side hustle.
Look at your own social media feed. What would a stranger see? Is it all MLM sales pitches? Are all of your “friends” just contacts for skin care, essential oils, and body wraps? Is your side hustle kosher with your day job? Many employers have secondary employment rules. Did you clear that up front? If not, you could be subject to disciplinary action. Stories like this, this, and this are embarrassing and could negatively affect your reputation, if not your career.
- Whether it’s personal or not, it’s all personal.
Declaring an account to be “personal” doesn’t immunize you from the consequences of your content. A County Councilman in Maryland ran his mouth off on Facebook. He then had to learn a hard lesson about boundaries in public. Then he had to issue a very public apology.
- Make good choices when it comes to textual intercourse.
Just because a photo of an intimate nature is locked in your password protected phone doesn’t mean it’s safe. You may remember this story of the massive phone hacking which resulted in hundreds of celebrities’ nude photos being leaked on the internet. The perpetrator in that case was caught, but it took two years to bring him to justice. Shared iCloud accounts are a new frontier in catching cheating spouses, handing divorce lawyers all the ammunition they need to take to court (including one iconic couple for those of us of a certain generation). Whether you’re married or single, it’s worth bearing in mind that 1) hacking happens and 2) you lose control over these photos once you send them to someone else. Remember the “Cookie’s cookies” incident on a recent episode of “Empire?” We can’t all bounce back as easily as she did.
Alexis Lambert is an attorney, endurance athlete, and curator of funny things on the internet. Her hobbies include power vinyasa yoga, SoulCycle, PureBarre, and GoRuck. Her fantasy girl squad would include Morticia Adams, Ouiser Boudreaux, Emily Gilmore and RuPaul.