Recently, I heard an unpalatable news. The events surrounding it made me question how much is too much when it comes to sharing? what aspects of our lives should we share?
Coming from an African background, A Nigerian one at that, I understand all too well the paranoia attached to sharing some aspects of private life.
A lot of people believe, evil witches and wizards would have direct access to your life when you share. So you are told to safeguard information to avoid your ‘enemies’ tampering with your ‘destiny’.
Information is indeed power. The less people know about you, the less information they would have to use against you, if there ever was a cause to do so.
That is why a pregnant women won’t tell you that she is pregnant, probably until you see her with a bump. And even then, please don’t dare ask further questions. A couple won’t announce they are getting married, not necessarily because they do not want a crowd attending, but because they have to be careful. The “forces that be” shouldn’t know so they do not hijack their day.
Its disheartening to hear some parents, go as far as working to prevent their children from becoming ‘too successful’, in a bid to protect them. Advertently, they should remain poor forever, so those evil people don’t target them and cut short their lives.
In a society, where poverty is the order of the day, one would think those around you would be happy to see you succeed, but no. I don’t know if its a curse, but the reality is that there are many who would rather see you suffer with them than succeed.
We are social beings, so the option of not sharing at all is not really workable.
Personally, there are times when things have happened and I did not share for various reasons. Sometimes it could be to humor those who believe, sometimes to be mysterious, and at other times because I have seen no reason to share etc.
I also love to share sometimes. Because I love to be part of a community that celebrates success and wins. I love to also share some of my grief. Sharing has played a big part in helping me navigate some very trying times.
Coming from this society that doesn’t share because of the fear of evil things happening, to one that seems to love ‘oversharing’, the question of how much is too much when it comes to sharing, will remain for me. Someone I knew at my former work place, walked into the office and announced to everyone that she was pregnant, giving us the due date and telling us she would make sure to inform us immediately she finds out the gender. I just sat there being amazed at the degree of openness.
Unfortunately, I believe the fear of sharing, based mostly on mistrust seems to be doing us harm in way. Because, It doesn’t just stop at our personal lives. When I say us, I am referring to the society I come from.
When you ask someone with a successful project, how they where able to get achieve it, they reply with, God.
We know its God, but what steps would you advise I take to be successful like you? We are grateful for Google though. There you can get a lot of this information, but then you need to be able to know where to look.
An African would have a business in this part of the world, but because he does not trust anyone, he remains the all in all, thereby overworking himself. You hardly see us working together to achieve anything successful.
Anyway, Whether you share or not, in this age of technology, best believe there is some ‘big brother’ watching your every move probably connected through your laptop and phone cameras. A lot of times, I find adverts on my phone related to conversations I just made. In my layman knowledge of tech, I have reason to believe that it is probably related to the Google assistants, Alexa and Cortana’s of this world.
Social media platforms are there constantly encouraging you to share. Even YouTube now has a short stories section.
Sometimes, when I use my devices, I tell myself to be careful. But then again I ask myself, what exactly do I have to hide? So I keep on living.