Is Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn helping my business or hurting it?

I admit it, I’m addicted. Social Media is my reality TV, although I believe the story lines and characters are far more interesting. As a fitness expert I often warn my clients about the hazards of sitting in front of a computer for too long. I tell groups of people at my lectures, “Beware of the internet sites that can suck you in. Before you realize it, you’ve been checking your comments and new members for 2 hours! Your pot of coffee has gone cold and exercise falls to the bottom of your to-do list.”

There’s no doubt, it’s becoming an issue for me. How can I as a fitness expert, someone that encourages others to move, find so much pleasure in social media? My computer is like an magnet, pulling me in, it’s my kryptonite. When I plant my butt in front of my computer, I’m like a toddler in FAO Schwartz store, sensory overload!

I suppose it comes down to practicing what I preach, moderation and balance. Finding the happy medium. The truth however, is these sites give me the opportunity to spread my healthy living message. Though I do wonder if anyone really cares about what I have to say via tweet or “What I’m doing now.”

When I receive a response, “Hey, cool site!” or “Hey, thanks for following,” I wonder if the respondent really ever read my thoughts. I see my thoughts falling into a black hole along with everyone else’s -unread. But maybe, just maybe there are people like me, that have an interest in what people are writing. Those that may actually be intrigued by thoughts, day-to-day issues and some pretty impressive blogs. I do however find myself thinking, “Is this creepy?” I wonder if some of this isn’t verging on the edge of voyeurism? If it is, not only am I guilty, I’m certainly not alone.

And then there’s the whole, “How many connections do you have? How many followers do you have?” I must admit, there’s a bit of a self-esteem issue when I’m being followed by someone with 23,000 members to my meager 150. Should I be embarrassed or flattered that someone that popular is actually following me? I typically go with the latter, the ego can only take so much in a day.

But let’s get back to the topic at hand, will all of this technological interaction help my business? I’m thinking as more people switch their social lives to internet, I could be in for some serious growth. Less movement, more weight gain, more weight gain, more panic and well busier times for moi.

I can see it now, the once active folks that used to go out for cerebral stimulation are opting instead for their computer. As they sit with a glass of wine (depending on the time of day of course. But for some, who knows?) a bowl of peanuts and with one click of the mouse, the “networking” begins. So yeah, I could see how all of this internet networking could be seriously advantageous to my bottom line. I’m liking this.

But wait, then there’s the other piece to this whole equation, me. What if as a fitness expert I suddenly find myself spending more time glued to my chair, engrossed in my tweets versus twiceps? Suddenly, I’m no longer the expert, but a client? Ooh, not good.

I best get back to practicing what I preach, moderation. Although there is no doubt that I dig the interaction and meeting people, I suppose I best seek out the balance. At the end of the day there needs to be a reality check and some real interaction, at least for me. For everyone else, go ahead and Tweet, Twitter, Follow, Tag, Connect and while you’re at it, check this out, just in case that moderation thing doesn’t work for you!

Oh, I just got a tweet. Lance Armstrong is now following me! Oh, it’s another Lance Armstrong. Gotta watch out for those impersonators. For a moment there, I thought I struck Twitter gold!

Here’s to finding the balance.

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