Join us in talking to Ben Winter, who is an author, speaker, actor, father, and entrepreneur, about the complicated relationship we have with social media. Our conversation will focus on ways we can think about setting better expectations in how we communicate with people through social media.
In his latest book, “What To Expect When Having Expectations” he focuses on the pitfalls of setting unrealistic expectations in our relationships. In this episode we specifically explore how those pitfalls can be amplified through social media.
We will even talk about some of the more addictive qualities that social media can have and the challenges that can present to our mental health. Join us as we sort through how we can better handle expectations in our world of hyper-connected technology!
Brent: We can go through our entire life without really getting true feedback about who we are as a person, the things that we’re doing wrong.
Ben Winter: It is truly insane what is happening right now? And none of us know what to do about it because none of us have ever lived in this time before. We’ve never dealt with it before, it might be two generations from now that are actually like, yeah, you guys were idiots.
Brent: Welcome to the lead with relationship podcast. Today, we’re talking to Ben winter, who is an author, speaker, actor, father, and entrepreneur. We are going to be talking about managing our relationship with social media. If you are just joining us, our podcast is produced by BeFun BeKind podcasts. If you want to explore podcasting yourself, check out BeFunBeKind.com to learn how to create impactful conversation through podcasting.
That’s also where you can learn more about our mission and even partner with us on our journey. You can find us at BeFunBeKind.com/LeadWithRelationship. We would also love if you would share this podcast with someone, you know, let’s get started.
Ben winter. It is good to have you back. This is our second episode together. If you’re just joining, go back and check that out.
The last thing that we really dove into was talking about having other people’s perspective and ins and the outs of what that can look like. We can go through our entire life without really getting true feedback about who we are as a person, the things that we’re doing wrong, because the people that are close enough to us to really provide that feedback, may be hesitant. We could obviously go out and get feedback from strangers that probably would not care at all, but they don’t know us well enough to provide the level of feedback that we need for a better life, and so that is a conundrum.
Ben Winter: One of the frustrating things that I see is when somebody is like, I look ugly today and then they get 300 comments of people saying, no, you’re pretty, you’re pretty well.
If you look at that long enough, they’ve created some level of addiction to the comments. To the praises. And so they put themselves in this rut of, I need validation through social media to feel good about myself, as opposed to turning off social media, walking down the road and saying, yeah, I’m a beautiful person.
And it’s very weird to watch because they don’t necessarily see that they’re self sabotaging themselves in that way where. I don’t feel like a valid person unless I post bad things about myself and have everybody disagree. And it, it creates a chemical reaction in our brain. And so we get addicted to it.
There are people out there who, we call them trolls, but they literally are chemically addicted to fighting people on social media. It’s not, it’s one of those things where you’re like, I have to disagree with people. I have to piss them off. I have to get them to piss me off because I need that chemical rush that I’m used to because I keep doing this over and over.
And it’s not until we turn it off, walk away and walk down the street that we get a different chemical composition running through our bodies. And it’s very interesting watching it as it’s happening. And once you become aware of it, you’re watching these things and you’re like, wow, this is insane.
It is truly insane. What is happening right now? And none of us know what to do about it because none of us have ever lived in this time before we’ve never dealt with it before we didn’t grow up with it before, it might be two generations from now that are actually like, yeah, you guys were idiots.
This is how we solve it. But that’s because they grew up. And so they’re going to possibly see it differently. And it’s just, it’s really interesting to watch and figure out, but it’s, we’re just all addicted to the newest kind of drugs and it’s called social media.
Brent: That’s so true. And I think it’s easy to sit back and blame the social media companies, but the truth of the matter is.
When they created this, they didn’t know either, they’re learning through this as much as we are, I think when they created this business model, maybe they had something in mind but things have just blown up most likely in a way that they never expected either.
This is really something that we really have to sit down collectively at a table as humanity and say, what is the right way to approach this?
Ben Winter: And social media is just like a tool, if you don’t use it it’s going to hurt you.
It’s like using a hammer, a nail if you’d use it right. Put a nail through a piece of wood. If you do it wrong, you’re going to hit yourself in the face and it’s going to hurt. And then who are you blaming? Are you blaming the hammer? Are you blaming the person using the hammer? Social media is no different social media is just a tool.
If you want to blame the tool, you got to blame yourself because you’re the one using it incorrectly, or you’re using it in such a way that it’s harming you where it’s a neutral thing. It, and so it’s. And yeah there’s a lot of debate on that one and there’s a lot of perceptions. And I ultimately think this is where it goes back to that whole objective subjective thing.
The only way to have an objective conversation is to come up with the end goal, the end agreement of what we’re talking about is it that we need social media to keep everyone safe and happy. That’s a conversation where you’re like that’s clearly never possible because you still have the human element involved.
If it’s allowing people to have whatever free speech they want, that’s a different conversation. But at the end, there’s gotta be the objective goal. Before you can have an objective conversation and decide what the true facts are in that nature. To me, social media is a little bit more subjective in that you can use it for business.
You can use it for personal. You can use it for hate. You can use it for love, there’s no right answer. It’s how we respond to it individually. That ultimately is what matters because I can. I can come across a post where I don’t believe what the person is saying, and I can sit there and argue with them, or I can just scroll on and move on with my day.
It’s I have a choice to make every time I see a post that doesn’t align with my thoughts and feelings and too many people are like, Nope, I don’t want to look at my own life. So I’m going to bash somebody else’s really quick. So I don’t. Two more minutes. I don’t have to look at myself. Or I don’t have to think for myself. I can just go after somebody. And so it’s a it’s a strange one. It’s so strange.
Brent: I agree. We’ve got some work to do. I’m curious that what is your thought on social audio that we’ve seen coming on board. That actually really took off in a huge way in 2020.
So the players in that would be Spotify has one out it’s Green Room. I think Twitter has Spaces out. Facebook is getting into it. Obviously Clubhouse was, I think, the pioneer in the area in getting started in 2020. It’s a slightly different way to approach things.
What is your opinion on it? Is there, are there any problems solved in that? Are there just as many problems added as it solves?
Ben Winter: For one, I feel like it’s a fad. I went into one clubhouse room and it’s, it felt to me like it was a zoom room. Where you couldn’t see anybody, but you could hear them. And then only the people that kind of were created and invited to speak were the ones that were, you could hear in that room.
So it was just another outlet where, and podcasts are the same thing. If you want to be validated for your thoughts and beliefs, you can go find that information to validate your thoughts and beliefs. This podcast is no different. If somebody is like, I like personal growth and I think expectations are something I want to learn about.
They’re going to listen to this. And they’re like, yes, I agree. And there’s going to be other people that come along and they’re going to listen to it just to bash it. They’re not whether they agree with it or not. That’s their goal in life is to just bash things and audio rooms. I kind of feel like a they’re fad.
I think people may stick around. If you got, if you have good content, then they’ll stick around. They’ll listen to it. I think if you’re just trying it out. Does it matter? Who cares? I think it’s like any other tool, the more effective you are with it. There’s great success. And I think there’s other if everybody’s coming out with one, then nobody’s really got any it’s It’s like your favorite flavor.
You’re going to go to your favorite flavor. If you’re already on Spotify, then Spotify green room makes more sense than downloading clubhouse. Time will tell, maybe it’ll be awesome. I’m not an auditory learner. So for me to sit there and listen to people is not as effective as me watching people.
So going to a webinar, it makes way more sense to me than going to an audio room. But again, I’m choosing based on. The information I want to validate or learn something new that’s already in alignment with me. And then there, there are people who are auditory learners and they’re going to absolutely love it.
And it’s going to be their favorite thing. So time will tell.
Brent: That’s true. Everyone is really different. I think that’s an honest and fair perspective. One thing that I think I have noticed in this new perspective is that they struggle with the same sort of scalability options.
When we saw Clubhouse launch, I guess really at the beginning of the pandemic, it attracted a lot of people because it provided an experience that was really based on conversation. And at that point in time, it was really needed during the pandemic, because it was a slightly different format than zoom, but now we’ve seen that grow.
We’ve seen scalability come in. We’re really, in my opinion, seeing some of the same things crop up that we saw with some of legacy, social media, Facebook and well now Instagram, and some of these others that came. Came down that same route. We are seeing the conversation aspect that really made it cool and popular really turn into you, just go into a room and listen, which is really not a whole lot different than listening to a podcast. In a sense with Facebook you maybe went from having a direct conversation with someone over to just reading a lot about what everyone else is doing.
It’s the scalability factor. Obviously as a business model, I think these companies absolutely have to scale to be able to make money. I think that is part of the challenge. Is there another business model where these types of people could maintain the same level of experience and still make money as an institution?
I don’t know, but I appreciate your perspective. I think it is one out there that a lot of people have. I think a lot of people get a lot out of them too, but to your point, everyone is different and we’re all looking for different mediums to, to grow within.
Very good perspective.
Ben Winter: Yeah. It’s an interesting thing because when I first came out, I was like, cool. I can go into a room and I can talk with a bunch of people. Except if there’s more than five people, you’re all trying to talk over each other. There’s no way for anybody. I get it. It’s not as natural as a conversation in a big open room.
Now, maybe if it was a visual format where you have a hundred people standing in the room and you’re like I’m going to click on Gary and I’m gonna go talk to Gary. And then the audio switches to just him and I with everybody else in the background. So it feels like you’re standing in a bar maybe Then you can have a conversation with Gary and then say, okay, Gary, I’m going to go talk to Sarah, Sarah standing by herself.
I’m going to talk to Sarah, but you’re doing it in a virtual way. Maybe that’s that would’ve worked better because then you’re having those individual conversations, just like you would in a happy hour situation with a big group of people. But otherwise, if there’s a hundred people in a clubhouse.
You can really only have the two people at the front of the room talking or five kind of taking turns talking, but you can’t have everybody else talking. Otherwise it would be mad chaos. And I personally would not stick around. I’d walk away. I’d be like, I’m done. See you later. So that’s my take on those.
There’s a place for them. People will listen to them. I don’t think they’re going to be as big as. Podcasts have been. Cause I think once people realize oh, this was just a live podcast, I can always come back to it later with if it’s a regular podcast and that’s the beauty of the internet is that we have information on demand, not when it’s happening.
Absolutely. A hundred percent. You know what maybe clubhouse will listen to this podcast and implement some of those features that you just said. I like them by the way. I like this. I’d like the
royalty for that. Thank you.
Brent: Ah, there you go. There you go. Yes, definitely. Go ahead and claim that
Ben Winter: here.
First. You heard it here,
Brent: right? Yeah. A hundred percent. Ben, we really appreciate having you on. We are coming to an end here, but I do want to let people know where they can find the book. So Ben what to expect when having expectations, where can they find the book?
Ben Winter: I would recommend everybody go to the website, havingexpectations.com Easy enough.
Brent: Okay. That is easy enough. Ben. It has been a pleasure we will see you soon.
Checkout some more of our Featured Conversations.
Watch our podcast tutorials to start creating your own impactful conversations with podcasting.