Here’s my secret shame: I regret that I don’t speak up enough online, say my piece, tell it as I see it, because I’m afraid of the backlash. Too many trolls. Too many flame wars. Too many closed minds. With the added bonus that everything you say online, theoretically, lasts forever. Present and future employers and potential clients may judge me and hold it against me. So I hold back.
I have a new policy, which I’m going to fight myself to try to stick to. This policy is called “so what?”
First, there’s an integrity issue. I’m not being true to myself or honest with you if I’m holding back. By “holding back” I don’t mean choosing my words carefully or trying to express my meaning clearly, concisely, and eloquently. I mean not saying anything at all because some mope might throw a tantrum and give me crap about it.
Second, if I do just let loose it will be a great filter. If you don’t like something I wrote or the subject matter I write about, that’s okay. Free country. Reasonable people will just tune out. If you choose to be a jerk about it in a public arena, well, that says more about you than it does about me. If you don’t want to be my friend because our views are too far apart and you can’t meet me half way, well, you’re probably not the sort of person whose friendship I should be seeking, and vice versa. If you’re an employer who chooses to hold my internet scribbling against me, suppressing my creativity and self-expression, you probably aren’t an entity I would benefit from working for.
It’s win-win, all the way around.
These past few years I feel I’ve really done myself moe harm than good by pussyfooting around trying to not offend anyone. I promise to try to be a lot more genuine going forward.