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Sharing Ambitions Online without Being Awkward

By Angie Ng

Every New Year’s Eve, many people set goals for themselves for the following year and share them online. Although receiving encouragement from others online is helpful, posting information about your personal ambitions reveals a lot about yourself to others. Here are five ways to avoid being awkward when sharing your hopes for yourself online.

1. Share your goals with people within an online community of people who have similar goals

People are different, and not everyone will understand your goals and be supportive.  Some might even offer discouragement instead, which might lead to awkward online comments/conversations/arguments. To avoid this, share your goals within a community you know is supportive of your goals.

2. Remember to check your privacy settings for a post before clicking “Post”

Sometimes people share things on social media so that their friends and family can celebrate when they reach a milestone towards their personal goals.  However, does everyone you are “friends” with on whatever platform deserve to know your personal hopes and dreams?

3. Avoid negative self-talk when you hit a bump

Cycling motivation at its best.

This is applicable both online and offline.  Would you make fun of a friend for missing a milestone?  Would you say, “You’re such a total loser – you don’t deserve your new bike!” Especially online though, letting others in on your negative self-talk in the heat of the moment might not seem like much, but try to remember how awkward it will be when you meet up with one of your online buddies in real-life, and they remind you about your labels for yourself.

4. Don’t ask all your “friends” or “followers” to hold you accountable


It’s okay to ask one or two trusted people to check in you and make sure you are on track in terms of your ambitions.  However, don’t ask all the online randoms to do this for you, unless you want anyone feeling like they have the right to give you negative, “they know best” feedback and comments.  This can lead to your having to make defensive statements, which are awkward enough, or even arguments with “friends” or “followers”.

 5. If you use a coaching or other app, make sure it doesn’t post to your social media unless you want it to

Fitness apps can be really cruel.

While using such apps may make reaching personal targets easier, do you really want to share every update on your progress with others?  It’s okay to seek encouragement from others, but at the same time, you don’t want to overdo it.  It can make you look needy and turn other people off following your posts, which may be fine with purely online “friends” or “followers”, but what happens when you see the ones you know from work, for example? “How come you didn’t like my posts?” Well, ….