Life, Purpose and Struggles

The problem with old school groups

I accidentally damaged my phone some time ago. It slipped out of my hands and cracked upon hitting the ground. To my dismay, it became unresponsive. The only thing I could pretty much do was receive incoming calls via an earpiece. This unfortunate incident helped me assess the use of my phone. For the past few years, WhatsApp as well as other social media platforms has become my default mode of communication; a development which I believe appeals to other phone users as social media platforms provides easy and convenient ways for correspondence. How was I going to survive with a damaged phone whose only use was to receive calls?

I accidentally damaged my phone some time ago. It slipped out of my hands and cracked upon hitting the ground. To my dismay, it became unresponsive. The only thing I could pretty much do was receive incoming calls via an earpiece. This unfortunate incident helped me assess the use of my phone. For the past few years, WhatsApp as well as other social media platforms have become my default mode of communication; a development which I believe appeals to other phone users as social media platforms provides easy and convenient ways for correspondence. How was I going to survive with a damaged phone whose only use was to receive calls?

Moments before heading out to purchase a new phone (after considering which model to get based on its features), the thought of WhatsApp groups and the dozen muted groups I couldn’t exit out of courtesy came to mind. This ‘‘uncomfortable’’ situation, as many will admit are synonymous with several other people. Lots of people ‘’cringe’’ at the thought of WhatsApp groups not to talk of “old school” groups. Yes, the groups created by all those friends and acquaintances from junior high, secondary school or university that love to rekindle friendships, settle feuds, share jokes and most importantly be updated on all the gist and gossip in everyone’s life. 

What’s the purpose?

One might ask if these groups are of any relevance? I believe they are usually created by people who may not mean any harm and think it’s a nice idea for classmates to keep in touch through a chat group. However, this isn’t always so. The main reason is that such groups sometimes forget to appreciate the present situation of most people on the groups. This probably sounds like a rant at this point, but trust me it’s going somewhere.

Some people have kids to raise, crazy work schedules and others are finding it hard to adjust to adulthood and keeping a balance on all other tabs in their lives; marriage, relationships, parenting, finances, spirituality, purpose, careers among others. Its good to reminisce on the good old days to release some stress but at this point, no one really cares about mistakes someone made back in school, the teacher who never had mercy on his students or the not so good memory we have of people we dated years ago. We are all in a rat race trying to figure it out.

These groups should be used for more rather than the purposes of sharing jokes and gists which are irrelevant. These groups should be used for mutually beneficial purposes. It should be used to help others achieve career goals, foster relationships, build networks and connections, get business deals among others. The doctor can assist his mates assess the urgent medical care they need, old flames can be rekindled, the architects, fashion designers and so forth can get new clients and more. We need to use these platforms to provide problem solving skills to others and contribute to their success stories. These WhatsApp groups should not be used as a space for escape.

As we get older, our discussions and interactions should reflect such transitions and maturity. And for that reason if these groups don’t help members to advance mentally, spiritually, emotionally, socially, financially or provide any other value addition benefits towards reaching the family, purpose and career progressions of members, then they aren’t worth it.

Think about it: why will you want to mute a group only to come to 400 plus messages you never read, year after year? Trust me, I know loads of people who have muted their groups or have loads of groups they want to escape from. It’s sad, but I guess someone has to talk lol.

Let’s focus on purpose!

Lastly, before you decide to create a WhatsApp group or any other platform, seek permission from all potential members you wish to add and let them know the objectives and purpose of the group so that all members are in sync with the ideals. It needs to serve the interest of all people and not just the administrator or a select few.

Here ends my message. But on a lighter note, if you are bored or looking for a place to let ofF steam, sometimes it’s best to interact with others one on one rather than group chats, or find someone to talk to. This makes groups more valuable. Thanks for reading

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