Opinions on The Internet

I’m kind of terrified to write about anything that could be remotely considered an opinion these days. The Internet is an amazing, but scary place. You can find information on any given topic and no matter how rare you feel like something about you is, 99% of the time you see person after person who has that in common with you. The computer is a fantastic place to connect people with one another, to rally around each other for causes or through hardships, and feel less alone in this big world. It’s a great way to gain knowledge and learn how to be more empathetic, and can be an incredible tool to help others.

I think most people are good and mean well. We all want to make the world a better place, we just sometimes have different ways of getting there. The biggest thing I see people fight about online is politics, but I’ve seen vicious arguments about something as trivial as whether Chips Ahoy or Oreo cookies are better. I see Republicans and Democrats fighting right and left (No pun intended), name-calling and bashing each other for having different solutions on getting to a similar end goal. Each and every one of them thinks their plan is the best way to bring peace on Earth and end great amounts of suffering in the world — they just disagree on the practical steps it takes to get there. Instead of realizing that they are, in fact, on the same team, people yell at each other and resort to name-calling. Rather than wondering why someone might feel there is a different solution, people remain stubborn and set in their ways, and neglect to open their mind to other ideas. It’s really dangerous when we stop critical thinking and forget how to communicate effectively with others. 

Politics is the easiest example to give, but I clearly am not going to be starting a blog talking about current political events, so why should I feel worried about being attacked on here?

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I am afraid to write about my opinions because people on the Internet can be so darn mean about nothing. I see celebrities bullied on a daily basis just for sharing their lives with their fans, and I see well-intentioned posts by girls in Facebook groups get attacked because someone was offended by the way something was worded. Everyone wants to be a social justice warrior so damn badly that they forget the people they are tearing down are human beings with hearts and feelings too. It’s so ironic. In my mind, these people just have one type of person they feel compassion and empathy toward — those who think the exact same way that they do.

One of my favorite quotes by Martin Luther King Jr is,

“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.”

Another great one is,

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

If you want to talk about tolerance and love, the first step is to be tolerant and loving. This means loving even those who are wrong.

MLK Jr is someone who truly understands what it’s like to be treated poorly, but chooses kindness anyway. He was a pioneer who changed life drastically for people who were not being treated well. He isn’t known for being offensive, rude, or condescending — rather, he is known for being kind and compassionate, even when he had every right not to be. He was the King of peaceful protests, and fought seamlessly for what was right while remaining calm and respectful. I think we could learn a lot from the way he handled conflict and injustice.

The truth of it is, we live in one of the most unforgiving times ever. A tweet from an angsty teenage version of someone ten years ago can completely destroy a career, a “like” on Instagram can lead to death threats, and voicing your opinion can be one of the scariest and bravest things you possibly do, especially if it is unpopular.

If the world keeps moving this way I think we’re going to miss out on so many creative minds. A world like this doesn’t promote creative thinking, rather it screams that you need to fit into a certain mold to be accepted and loved. I believe bullying is one of the worst things human beings are capable of doing, and I think there are so many online bullies who have absolutely no idea that they’re actually the ones who are being cruel. I’d love to see people ask more questions and find out why someone perceives the world differently than they do. Instead of trying to cram ideas down someone’s throat, find out why they believe what they do and have a civil conversation about it. Agreeing to disagree is what makes America such a great nation, and I hate seeing this notion getting flushed down the toilet with the age of the Internet. Great things will start happening when we learn to work with each other, rather than choosing to focus on and fight about our differences.

Leave Signs Where They Belong

If someone is nice to you, don’t automatically take that as confirmation that they like you. Know someone is into you when they tell you so, rather than gathering a hundred “signs” and making an assumption. Signs are intended to indicate whether or not a ski slope is one you would like to attempt, they are to keep drivers safe on the road, and they are created to make sure people refrain from littering the beach.

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Now, I know this all sounds so harsh and like I’m not being very sensitive… I can so empathize with those who think someone is into you, only to learn they just have a naturally flirty personality. On the flipside, though, I’ve also had people think that I like them when I’m only trying to be nice or make a new friend. Both scenarios are really tough, but I have a little advice that I think might be helpful for dealing with either.

Some people are incredibly great at reading others, but they still can’t possibly have a completely foolproof system at knowing what other people are thinking. One person is different from the next, so the best way to know for sure how someone feels about you is by having an open conversation and asking them.

This does get tough, though, because you don’t want to be creepy about it or come on too strong. There’s a time and place for conversations like this, and having one with someone you don’t know very well will almost surely scare them off.

A good rule of thumb could be that if you feel like someone is taking over your entire dating life — without being exclusive with them — you might want to take the leap and ask what they’re thinking about your relationship. You definitely don’t want to waste a ton of time on someone who isn’t ready to be exclusive if that’s what you’re looking for, but it also does takes some time to build a foundation and get to know someone before jumping into a relationship. Next week I am going to be talking a little bit about how to determine whether or not the person you like could be worth pursuing, and how to think with your brain even when your emotions try to take the lead.

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Today’s lesson: Leave signs where they belong — on highways, hiking trails, and at subway systems. Start taking what people say — or don’t say — at face value and don’t let others play games with your heart. Communication is certainly key in a healthy relationship, so it is important that you don’t find yourself feeling like you’re constantly left in the dark with someone you like because they are sending mixed signals.

Once you take your power back you begin to realize that you may not be able to control whether or not your crush likes you, but you can control how you respond to the way he treats you in a way you’re proud of. If he doesn’t ever call or text you first to make plans, maybe it’s time you go radiosilent and spend that time you used to think about him meeting new people — until you find someone who realizes what a great catch you are and does call you to make plans!


IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: I’M MOVING!

In just a couple of weeks I will no longer be on this website. My dating life changed a loooong time ago, so I am finally taking the time to make some changes that reflect this and moving my site to KristaLauren.com (As I have mentioned before I would have done this a lot sooner, but I am technologically challenged and 10 times out of 10 prefer to write instead of work on my site). Make sure you sign up to receive emails for my posts, like my Facebook page, or bookmark my new site if you want to stay a part of my Single in The Suburbs family. 🙂

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice To Say

Taking the plunge and making a YouTube channel actually taught me a lot about the importance of kindness and offered a peek into a new corner on the Internet. I feel fine about everything now, and learned that I can handle some not so nice criticism, but it also made me think a little about people who get nasty comments on a regular basis. It has to be so incredibly draining, so I hope to help people realize how much their words can influence another human being, and choose to use them to create more positivity in the world.


When I first started my quest to get Robert to meet Tom Brady I was all kinds of nervous. I hate being the center of attention. I don’t mind putting myself out there when it comes to my heart and feelings, but there’s something that scares me about putting my face and everything out there. I think it’s because I know I can really be clear in my writing, while public speaking hasn’t always been my greatest strength.

I knew some people would be rude about my reach to Tom Brady, but I didn’t anticipate the way I would feel when I did read something nasty. 99.9% of the people who said something about it were so kind, encouraging, and enthusiastic. The ones who weren’t, though, were either incredibly rude or mean, and most of the comments were really unnecessary.

Reaching out to Tom Brady asking him to do something nice for someone I love was not hurting anyone or taking anything away from another person. IF on the very off chance he had been able to do something like this, it would have been because he wanted to take some of his own limited free time to do it. I do understand that a quarterback of a successful team like the New England Patriots is busier than you or I have ever been, but it definitely isn’t up to me whether or not he responds to a video like this. I have seen celebrities do nice things for all kinds of people, even just “big fans” who don’t really have a rhyme or reason. My intention for making this video was lighthearted, and driven by love.

Moving forward, I would love to offer a checklist for people to consider before posting a critical comment online:

  1. Is what this person is doing hurting anyone?
  2. Will your comment contribute anything positive to the discussion, or is it just something snarky that you are thinking to yourself?
  3. How would you feel if someone said that to you?
  4. Finally, is this something you would say to someone in person, or is it just easy to say through a computer screen?

If you don’t have anything nice to say, think really hard about whether or not your comment is productive. Calling someone names, putting them down, or attacking them personally is never okay. Celebrities, models, comedians, and social media personalities all have feelings. There are very real people on the other end of the screen you are communicating through. I understand that they might not know you, but that means you also likely do not know their heart or what they might be dealing with in their lives. It is always safe to use the Golden Rule we all learned in Kindergarten: Treat others the way you want to be treated.

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Today’s lesson: When in doubt exercise self-control. There is a reason Hemmingway said, “The pen is mightier than the sword.” Words can hurt and do a lot of damage. Yes, there are absolutely things that I see online that make me angry and upset. People have opinions different than my own, but at the end of the day that’s okay.  It’s actually what makes the world a better place and able to grow; we can learn so much from people with perspectives different than our own. As long as nobody is being hurt — mentally or physically — if someone does something silly on the Internet that’s their own business. Go to the next website and move on.

Tips For Men: Better Dating Conversations

I reached out to my good friend Will to do a blog post for me since he’s someone who is super-confident in the dating world, and though his advice always has a little dose of silliness, it’s usually spot-on.

Without further ado, here are his tips on how to carry a great conversation on a date:

  • Wing It: Some guys like to meticulously plan out every question and topic they want to bring up. Please learn how to have a fluid conversation without doing this. Women do not want a robot, they want a human being. Plus, it will save some awkwardness from pulling out the list of topics you have in your back pocket when you get stuck.
  • Be Nice, But Not “Fake Nice”: Being respectful is always important, but do not be so nice to the point that it doesn’t seem genuine. When someone tries too hard, it’s obvious they only have one goal in mind, and women aren’t stupid… Krista’s readers are intelligent, so you fellas are looking for someone with brains too (Not in a zombie sort of way, even with Halloween coming up and all).
  • Utilize Your Intelligence: This article is discussing what to do when dating quality women, so onward to the next tip — intelligent conversation. Women love to talk, so when they’re talking about themselves ask questions that you’re naturally curious about. For example, if she’s not from around here, ask her about her hometown and how different the culture is there.
  • Bond Over Hobbies: The best way to keep a conversation going is to talk about hobbies. On the first date, ask her what she likes to do and if you have some things in common, talk about that. Easy money! A good partner is someone you can do fun things with, so finding her interests early is awesome. For example, I’m a huge fan of basketball, so it would be advantageous to me to meet a lady who also knows that ball is life, since women that don’t know will never completely understand.

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  • Have A Sense of Humor: This is my bread and butter, my meal ticket. Women love a guy who has humor and wit. As a matter of fact, if you make a girl laugh frequently and you do not screw up too bad, you’ll most likely have a second date. I’ll bet $100 on it. Just don’t be too crude (my Achilles heel sometimes). If you want more detail on how I include humor on a date, pick up my new book Making Her Fall Head Over Heels… With Laughter. The book signing is actually next Thursday.
  • Be Confident, Not Cocky: Confidence is knowing you have the ability to do something without having to brag about it. Whenever someone says they are really good at something, I automatically question their claim. For example, if I titled this article “Reasons Will is the Most Charming Person on the Planet,” you, as the reader, will nitpick anything that can be interpreted otherwise just to disprove my point. Your date will do the same thing. I better take my own advice; my dates won’t know about my book.

Today’s lesson (Courtesy of Will): To sum it all up, just be authentic and have fun. Keep trying; a failed date is never a bad thing and honestly will likely happen more often than a successful one. Just learn from your mistakes (and victories!) and you will be a force to be reckoned with. Relax, bro!

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