After finishing my weekly drum lesson, I sat in my office chair and read the above tweet from @bronwynah, which made me realize that I interact much more with my social media peeps than my in town “friends”. I use friends in quotation because there is a lot of room to define the word “friend”. Here is when I ramble about friendship and the people that we choose to interact with.
The reality of our society is that the times in which we choose the people we interact with are almost non-existent. We are born into a family we have not chosen, we go to school with people we did not choose, and we work with people we did not choose either. Most of us do get to choose the one person we share our lives with, and most of the time that is it for real life interactions. The friends we make can be constrained by the people we meet in school, work, or other random places. That is where the beauty of social media comes to life: you get to make new friends and meet people regardless of where they live!
Over the last two years, my life has taken a complete 360 and my social interactions with other speech therapists is now restricted to online conversations. Two year ago, on my 8 to 4 job, I was able to mingle around the SLPs I felt shared my values. Today, as I prepare to attend the Asha convention I cannot describe the excitement I feel to meet many of the people I interact and value much more than some people I have on my phone as my contact list. Not to mention how I do not like talking on the phone, which makes social media even much more valuable to me.
Social Media tools such as Twitter have allowed me to learn from and collaborate with so many wonderful speech pathologists that I would never otherwise meet. Thanks to @speechtechie I realized I did not need to panic right before the @ashaconv.
Through twitter I was able to connect with people very far away (Australia) from me such as @bronwynah and people who live so close and who have become a great support during my local presentations @slp_deb.
Some just chose to brighten my day with nice tweets:
Collaborations have been made and new apps have been created between me and other SLPs from three different countries (US, Canada, Barbados)! @speechbob, @mtmarySLP, SLPTanya, @speechreka.
Thanks to @mtmarySLP I know how to say the past tense of “to tweet”
A support group was created!
While the opportunities for networking are clear to most, the opportunities for personal connections many times are not. This is my little shout out to those wonderful #Slpeeps who make my professional and many times personal life much more exciting. Thank you so much for your support and for joining my professional learning network. I look forward to meeting many of you guys next week in San Diego when we are trying to get together( this time in real life).