My mom taught me so much, at a time when there was limited technology, no cell phones, no internet and of course no social media. The social lessons she taught me apply today and I have interpreted them as so that have become my social media takeaways. My mom passed on earlier this year and I think about her every day, and if truth be told, many times a day. As we approach the end of the year I wanted to re-run a previous blog post with slight updates in honour of my mom.

We are all part of a global community comprising of a mishmash of cultures and societal differences. It has become increasingly important for each one of us to implement a code of conduct for our social media interactions. What are the key social media takeaways that would make up a social media engagement code of conduct?

I am reminded of the social rules my mom taught me growing up – with a slightly digital twist!

Here are a few of my Mom’s ‘social media takeaways’ that I live by:

Be helpful. The social media channel has allowed all of us to be part of a larger community – a global community. There are no borders or boundaries. As such, we have opened ourselves to different people’s perspectives and experiences. If someone needs help from LinkedIn, a Group Post or Facebook and you can offer expertise, an opinion or an alternate point of view, do it – not to sell, but to assist. Pay it forward. Like everything else in life, it’ll come back to you!

If you don’t have anything nice say… The last part of this rule of social engagement is ‘don’t say anything at all’. But in the digital space, if you’re not saying something nice, at least be positive and constructive in how you say it. Or go back to Mom’s rule and don’t say anything at all – just click away!

The only thing you can control is your own behaviour. Not everyone is going to like you, want to be your friend or even have the same values as you. That’s true no matter what space you engage in. Understand this and respond to negativity with kindness. If you can’t do that, then disengage. There’s no need to add undue stress to your life. You are not going to change anyone. You have choices, exercise them.

Be mindful. Think about the subjects you discuss and how you discuss them. The immediacy of social media makes it easy to jump right in and text/post/comment the first thing that pops into your head. Although, it’s not conducive or good conduct to just blurt out whatever you have on your mind.

The Social media takeaway that my mom nurtured in me was respect in all ways and modes of interaction. Governing how we interact on the digital space, both on a personal or business level is no exception. Mom’s rules of social conduct for face-to-face interactions really makes senses for social media engagement conduct as well.

Thanks Mom.