Monday, December 26, 2016

How to Engage on Facebook WITHOUT All the Stress & Strife

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


2016 has been a trying year for everyone on Facebook. From the political comments to bogus news traps, and even Christmas, I’m hearing reasons people are taking a break from this social network. But throwing the baby out with the bathwater may not be the best solution to this dilemma.

It is possible to interact on Facebook and NOT be inundated with updates we don’t want to see.

Facebook works on their own Edgerank algorithm. This means that based on certain parameters, FB decides what you’ll see and what you want. But these parameters are influenced by our personal (or business) behavior, so we actually have a little more control than we may realize. Here are some habits you may want to develop to make your FB time a little less stressful.

How to Make Facebook Work for You

1. Be careful what you LIKE, COMMENT, and Share. As I said, our behavior weighs heavily into the algorithm. What that means is that FB is watching the things you LIKE (or dislike) Comment On and Share. For example, the more you engage on political updates, the more political updates you’ll see in your newsfeed. Refusing to engage won’t completely clear your newsfeed of a specific type of update, but it will greatly reduce the number you see.

2. Be wary of which links you click on. Don’t get caught by ads like “Celebrity X is no longer with us,” or other click bate. Even the name game links can add to number of junk updates that show up in your newsfeed.

3. Choose a list of SEE FIRST accounts that are trustworthy. Most of us remember the good ole days when we saw every update from our friends—in order—in our newsfeed. Those days are long gone, but there is new work-around that FB has made available. It’s called SEE FIRST. This works with people you are FRIENDS and with pages you LIKE.

To SEE FIRST a friend’s, go to his/her profile and click the small arrow beside FOLLOWING (under the cover image). You’ll see the option to SEE FIRST (see first image below).

This image is before you click See First



After you choose that box, it will show up as SEE FIRST instead of FOLLOWING on that person’s cover image (see second image below).

This image is after  you click SEE FIRST


You’ll also notice that there’s a message under SEE FIRST that lets you jump to a list of all your friends and you can choose which to see first from there. CAVEAT: you are only allowed to see 30 accounts first, so choose wisely.

To SEE FIRST a professional page, go to that specific page and click the small arrow next to FOLLOWING and choose SEE FIRST. After you’ve clicked that, the following button will not say SEE FIRST, like on a personal profile (see image below). CAVEAT: from what I can tell, there’s no limit to the number of pages you can choose to SEE FIRST and they don’t figure into the 30 personal profiles you SEE FIRST.
This image shows what SEE FIRST looks like on a professional page
4. Be careful About the updates you share. A lot of times we can post something that seems innocent, but can draw a firestorm of irritating and downright ugly comments. For me personally, I don’t every share anything political. EVER. And I stay away from controversial posts, like gay marriage, abortion, etc. I’ve done a lot of praying about this and I’d like to share my reasoning with you.

My FB profile is set to public. This means anyone and everyone can see it. These aren’t my close personal friends who already know my heart and my intentions, these are strangers who only have my picture and some random updates with which to judge my meaning and intent.

My personal friends and I can debate and disagree privately because we already have a foundation for our relationship. We have a level of trust and even more importantly—context—that makes sharing difficult things in a loving way possible. I can share things with them that could be considered inflammatory unless we shared that context. When I share controversial things on FB—with strangers and people who don’t know me well—it’s like standing on a street corner and screaming that the only way to Heaven is through Jesus and without Him we’re all going to hell. It may be truth, but it just sounds like hate and judgement. When it comes to sharing difficult truth, I don’t hold back with the people I know personally.

Bottom Line
The way we choose to interact on FB that is very personal, and I know some of you will disagree with the approach I've chosen. I’m fine with that. We each have to do what we feel is right. But know that if you choose to engage with controversial posts, your newsfeed may light up like World War 3.

I hope this post helps you engage on FB in a way that is less stressful. These are the things that I’ve found have a huge impact on what I see in my FB newsfeed. What have you found that helps you keep the rioters at bay on social media? Be sure to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Don’t forget to join the conversation
Blessings,
Edie

TWEETABLES
Avoid the hate-filled posts on #Facebook with these tips from @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

How to engage on #Facebook WITHOUT all the stress & strife - @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)


26 comments:

  1. Thanks for such good advice! I've been lamenting that I never see posts from friends that I want to see...now I know what to do about it! :-)

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    1. Pat, I'm glad I was able to help! Blessings, E

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  2. I'm one of those people who took a social media break until after the New Year -- the first time I ever did so. And it's been nice to unplug, kind of shake the stuff out of my head, and be refreshed come January. I miss FB some, but then again, I'm glad to be off the leash, too. And yes, I did a double-take when I caught a glimpse of myself today on your blog. :O)

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    1. Beth, unplugging is a good thing. We can get way too caught up in this unrealistic life if we don't@ Blessings, E

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  3. #4 especially!! If I need to say anything on an issue, I take it to my blog where I can go into some depth on my reasoning. It's a feature I've called Headline News, and it is reserved for few and rare specific topics that weigh heavy on my heart, and which I believe Father has put on my heart to address.

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    1. Robin, that's an excellent way to address things you feel passionately about! Blessings, E

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  4. I, too, have taken some time off social media, mainly because of other responsibilities. But as I prepare to start the new year in a more organized fashion, I've already started my See First list, thanks to you! Hope you 2017 is the best one ever!

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    1. Vonda, you've been part of my SEE FIRST list for a while! I know I can always count on positive, uplifting updates from you, Blessings, E

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  5. Not all my Facebook friends are tactful and sweet. I love them for other reasons. I don't know if they know it's me, but I've been known to remove some of their posts, hoping we can still be friends. (Let's face it. I hope they don't know it's me).

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    1. Patricia, you're safe. FB doesn't notify someone that their post has been removed! Blessings, E

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    2. Thank you. It's the coward coming out in me. They aren't Christian but they are beloved family members. Their posts show an un-Christian viewpoint.

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  6. Edie, this was very helpful! Thank you for sharing this information. I needed this! Hope you had sweet time with family this Christmas.

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    1. Crickett, I'm glad it was valuable to you! I loved reading your interview on Vonda Skelton's blog today! Blessings, E

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  7. Thank you Edie. My FB page is also public. I post scriptures almost every morning and have some faithful followers that look forward to the scriptures starting their day. I have a lady, a church friend, who usually leaves a comment about the scripture. The other day, she commented with some long political message which I did not take the time to read. I hid her message from being seen and private messaged her in a loving way that I was not opposed to political stuff, but would rather she post it on her own timeline. I told her I was hiding it from view as I did not want the political influence associated with my name. Thanks for the encouragement and how to use FB to our advantage. Great stuff! Blessings to you and your family.

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    1. Sheryl, that's a good way to handle that sort of comment! Blessings, E

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  8. Thank you Edie for the helpful tips.

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    1. Jann, thanks so much for stopping by, Blessings, E

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  9. As always, wonderful advice, Edie! I will use these tips to see more of what I want in my newsfeed - namely, your posts like these! And I completely agree with your stance of not posting or engaging in controversial posts. My opinion is that Facebook is not the proper venue for conversations like those. Thank you, again, and have a blessed new year!

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    1. Hope, thank you for the encouragement! Blessings, E

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  10. Edie, this is so timely. I got off before the election and only get on right now to respond to messages or notifications. Scrolling was overwhelming and draining to me emotionally, physically, spiritually... but now that I've been off and have set my own parameters for control, I feel ready to approach FB as a business tool and keep the majority of my personal life to myself and my people I trust and love. Thanks so much for voicing what so many feel!

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    1. Lindsey, it is empowering to get a handle on the chaos that FB has become! Blessings, E

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  11. Thank you for the helpful advice, Edie. So glad I have a choice on FB!

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    1. Gail, I was really excited when I discovered I could control a lot of what I was seeing on FB. I'm happy to be able to share it! Blessings, E

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  12. So much good stuff here. I'm public also and try to lean towards positive and encouraging content. Good to know this. Thank you for sharing.

    Blessings,
    Inspiring Souls

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