Yep me too!
I am a self confessed google-a-holic, whenever I am stumped by something off to google I go. In my defense much of my fact-finding does involved peer reviewed research but I also find great insight from people’s personal stories. Let’s face it we have all done it and will continue to do so but let’s get clear about the benefits and limitations of Social Media.
The internet is such an amazing wealth of information
… and far light than a full set of the Encyclopedia Britannica! There is an abundance of material at our fingertips and naturally when faced with an issue that we are struggling with we investigate it with the dedication of a detective on CSI. We research, we read scientific studies, we read about people’s personal experiences and sometimes we ask for advice or even share our own. No matter what time of the night or day we have access to our very own cornucopia of wisdom.
In some instances the information gained can provide insight which can lead to a breakthrough however sometimes the use of online information can lead to a break down!
So how do we know where we are going to end up?
It works when…
When you are at your wits end … Utilizing Facebook pages, reading blogs specific to your situation can be a great way of accessing insight and empathy, that is connecting with people who have had a similar experience. Sometimes we just need to hear that somebody else has pulled through some similarly tough situations and it restores our faith that we too will get to the other side. We might pick up some tips that help us better manage or perceive the situation. It can also give us signposts for things to discuss with qualified medical professionals
To support others… Once our situation has eased supporting others can give our experience meaning and purpose. Many people will not have faced the unique challenges that we have gone through and misplaced sympathy can be both hurtful and diminishing. Sharing true understanding, insight and compassion with others facing similar challenges can bolster their resilience and provide the necessary encouragement to keep going.
It’s time to seek professional help when…
When you are a looking for a medical diagnosis… As mentioned it can give us signposts for things to discuss with qualified medical professionals however this must not be confused with an official diagnosis. All too often people lose sleep and sanity over conditions that they have self-diagnosed via Dr Google or advice given on discussion boards. Save time and sleep by booking in with your GP and getting sound professional advice
When things don’t change… Particularly when it comes to matters of the mind or heart it is so important to acknowledge that the information available online is on the most part generic.
For example if you are experiencing ongoing anxiety, depression, grief, anger you may feel temporary relief from reading blogs and posts about the subject. Yet the reasons that people experience these states are so acutely unique to their own personal situation that external perspectives only form part of the picture.
In these instances you are less likely to see a significant shift without assistance from a qualified practitioner.
Therapists provide a framework of understanding from which to explore your personal experience. The greatest gift of therapy is providing you with the space to fully express yourself without judgement, an avenue to explore the most appropriate outcomes based upon your unique experience and support during any transitions. While Social Media is a great resource you are ultimately the expert and qualified professionals can help guide the process so that instead of a temporary reprieve you can achieve true resolution.
If you are looking for support to navigate through the sometimes rocky terrain of our inner world feel free to call me on 0419 101 665 email me at firstname.lastname@example.org