According to a recent article in the USA Today, the newest way to say ‘I love you’ on Mother’s Day is social media. Several well known companies, including E-Trade, Teleflora, iVillage and SpaFinder, are using social media tools to promote Mother’s Day this year.
A lot of people insist that technology is making us less connected, that our relationships are suffering because of cell phones, computers and other devices. Let me ask you something: How many of you know your mom’s birthday by heart? What about her phone number? What about the names and phone numbers of your three best friends? I would venture to say that most people out there know very little about the people closest to them by heart, if anything at all.
Here’s another question: How many of you have ever wished someone ‘happy birthday’ because you see it’s his or her birthday on Facebook? How many of you do it on a regular basis? What about sending an email to a high school friend you otherwise would never have reached out to? What about wishing all the women in your life ‘happy Mother’s Day’ via Facebook, Twitter or e-card? Get the picture yet?
If everyone out there who is so adamant that technology is costing us our personal relationships would stop complaining and take a look at what’s actually going on, they would realize that it’s just the opposite. Technology and social media are making it possible for us to connect to people in ways we never could before. It’s encouraging us to reach out to people that we might not even speak to otherwise. It’s allowing us to reconnect with people that we’ve lost touch with a long time ago. How can this possibly be a bad thing??
I’m not telling you NOT to pick up the phone on Sunday, or NOT send flowers, or NOT to take your mom to brunch. But I am telling you to do SOMETHING. Mother’s Day is a sentimental holiday. It’s all about building a relationship, and making a connection with someone. Sound familiar? Those very same things are the essence of social media. Social media isn’t about technology. It’s about person-to-person activity and the way people connect with one another. It isn’t a substitute for real, authentic relationships at all – it’s actually a way to expand and strengthen them.
So how about today, the Friday before Mother’s Day, instead of wasting your time complaining about how social media is costing us our relationships, log on to your Facebook account and wish your mom ‘happy Mother’s Day.’ And while you’re at it, you might as well buy her those flowers too…
USA Today – Social media used to market Mother’s Day