I enjoyed all your reactions to yesterday’s post about being a bitchy old crone. Marvin said “Love your transparency and candor. Be yourself.” That brings up an interesting issue – exactly how much of ourselves should we share online?
I recently blogged about attending a training on leadership and community organizing given by Greg Golluzzo, who trained Barack Obama. Among other things, he focuses on the difference between our public and private relationships. The latter include our immediate family and a very few friends. These are intimate relationships where we can truly be ourselves, transparent and spontaneous. Public relationships, in contrast, are more objective and goal-oriented. We enter into them voluntarily, for our own self-interest, and they involve our donning a mask and/or uniform, such as the “dress for success” outfits we wear for work, conferences, etc. For Golluzzo, “self-interest” is a good thing, not to be confused with the “selfishness” our culture tends to condemn.
For writers, and especially writers blogging online, I believe these distinctions get blurry. How much should we disclose, and to whom? There’s a kind of instant intimacy that arises in groups like Blog Book Tours, and frankness makes blogs more interesting. But this is a public forum, after all. Where are the limits?
Yesterday I posted about pouring myself a glass of red wine as my five o’clock therapy. That struck a chord with a lot of folks, who commented on their own love of wine as a stress reducer. (Chocolate came in a close second.) That seems fine in the context of this group, and helps create a cheerful sense of community. But if we all started posting about the exact extent of our alcohol consumption, and whether we or our significant others think it’s problematic, that would be way too much information. (Disclaimer: I don’t have a problem.)
For those who’d like to learn more about Greg Golluzzo and his organization the Gamaliel Foundation, here is the website: www.gamaliel.org. I tried to insert the link using Marvin’s tutorial instructions, but I got befuddled, so this one will probably take you away from my site. I’ll try to do better next time.
Any thoughts on the transparency issue? When it comes to sharing, where do we draw the line?