The social media world can be difficult to navigate. There are annoying updates. There are excessive updates. There are people you followed three years ago who only retweet news now that you're not interested anymore.
But should you keep following someone who taints your social media experience just because you don't want to hurt their feelings?
Rebecca Greenfield says no.
In her article in The Atlantic Wire, Greenfield offers pretty sound advice for not getting overwhelmed online. She defends unfriending people. She advises people to "stop torturing yourself with your exes," and make Twitter tolerable by unfollowing uninteresting people.
It’s not a bad thing to streamline your experience. You really are in complete control of your digital life: you can’t complain about an intolerable Twitter stream after you’ve personally hand-picked every person you follow.
What you could also do is make each network have a very specific purpose. Twitter could be used for getting news updates and following people relevant to your areas of interest. Facebook could be used as a more personal experience and as the place you go to occasionally look at old friends’ photos.
And if you’re looking for a network dedicated to just happy thoughts, one exists.
Called Happier, it focuses on those moments that bring smiles to our faces. No negativity here. It’s for those people who like writing about the boy who bought their coffee while in front of them in the Timmie’s drive-thru, or about how beautiful the sunset was that they watched from their back deck – things that might annoy if they popped up on a Twitter or Facebook feed.
Founded by Nataly Kogan in Boston, Happier has now seen more than a million happy moments.
One post says “It smells lovely today. That fresh clean smell from rain.”
Another says “Finding the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe.”
It’s sort of like the blog-version of The Book of Awesome, or 14,000 things to be happy about.
And, most importantly, it’s a place where you can read or write about those little moments you might not be interested in seeing on Twitter or Facebook. If you have streamlined those feeds, you can go look at Happier and share moments about how you had coffee with an old friend, or that you’re baking muffins or that you think you just fell in love (or just read about other people’s moments, if you’d like).
Social media networks can work for everyone; they just need to be personalized. With a little bit of time and focus, it’s easy to make each easy to use and make sense for you.