(1) Remain honest: Anything you wouldn’t say offline, don’t say it online. While the Internet is vast, it is also small—in that, it has an excellent memory and doesn’t forgive. Cache is the best catcher and Google, the online equivalent of James Bond. Nothing escapes the Internet’s eyes.
(2) Build relationships: Would you go to a party in the real world and only talk about yourself? I hope not. Follow the same etiquette in the online world. Try not to suffer from “I, ME, MYSELF,” syndrome. Pay attention to what others have to say. Push their content. Cherish the connections. Thrive on mutual respect and intellectual exchanges. Learn and inspire. Relationships make us who we are—be it in the online or offline world.
(3) Read like it’s going out of fashion: Information changes everyday at a pace most of us can’t keep up with. The easiest way to stay up-to date with current information is by reading a lot. But there is so much information out there that it’s easy to get inundated. Find trends, chats, industry leaders, people who inspire and challenge (in a positive way) you, like-minded folks—this approach funnels down the available reading material based on your own areas of interest. Reading opens us up to different perspectives. Who doesn’t like a side if self-growth?
(4) Help others: It’s a key ingredient in your own happiness and success. We don’t need to be perfect to help others. Our mistakes can be a learning tool too. Give back to the online community. Be happy for other people’s success. Be there through highs and lows of your online friends and colleagues. Yes, there is something called social media karma. As you sow, so you reap. One-sided relationships die eventually and aren’t fulfilling at all.
(5) The “right” amount: How much is too much or too little, people often ask me? There are several formulas out there for the “right” number of social media messages to send out everyday. I say use your gut instincts. Enjoy social media like a glass of good wine. Instead of binging, use it in amounts depending on what you define as “adequate.”
SWETA VIKRAM is a contributing editor of LitChat. Read her complete bio here.