What Is Your Emoticon?

– by MeditateZEN


What’s your emoticon?

Really, what is it?

If you read through your last year of posts, what emotion do you exude the most?

Think about it.  The Social Media newsfeed is full of personal testimonies:

  • I don’t want to get out of bed today.  I just don’t care anymore.”  – Feeling depressed
  • “I am so mad, I just want to call him and yell at him!”  – Feeling angry 
  • My friends won’t return my calls.  – Feeling heartbroken
  • “The car wouldn’t start today, I swear, the universe hates me!”  – Feeling unlucky
  • “The cat scratched my couch. Now I am going to need a new sofa!”  – Feeling broke
  • Look, I am in the ER! I wonder if the doctor will ever see me!” – Feeling sick  (Photo of a solemn face accompanies the post.)

I noticed patterns with certain individuals.   As they framed their feelings with social media emoticons and or emoji, it was easy to see what sort of outlook they had:  Sad, mad, depressed, angry, annoyed, irritated, heartbroken, frustrated…

The emotional cues were a signature of the energy they exuded: negative.  I wasn’t being critical when I read their posts.  Instead, I was being observational.  I began to realize if I could challenge friends to review their emoticon posts, would it compel them to want to manifest change?  Would surveying their own statuses potentially lead them to a road of awareness?

Recently, my friend’s daughter posted numerous comments on her Twitter page, “I’d be better off dead…No one cares about me…I have no friends…”  Her mother saw the posts and wrote on her own  Facebook page:

  • Lisa [name changed] just posted that she’d be better off dead on her Twitter account!  What am I to do?  Where would she ever get such an idea?”  – Feeling hopeless.

I was moved by the irony of Carol’s [name changed] post.  You see, our children learn what they live.  Needless to say, I reached out to Carol and offered healthy counseling options for them both.

What is my point?  Social Media became a useful tool to help me gauge my own emotional thermometer. It can be the same tool for you.

Every day I pay attention to my emoticons.  What message am I sending?  What energy am I putting behind it?  How can I spin this negative into a positive?  I challenge you to do the same.  The next time you post a status, pay attention to how you’re feeling.  Allow the process to create an awareness. What emoticons are trending on your page?  Ask yourself, “Is this the sort of mood I want to generate?”   Understand there is power in your words, and know that our children are listening.

And on that note, I will leave you with this status: 

  • “Turn up the volume on your positive thoughts.  You will create a happy audience.”  – Feeling certain.

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