Have we forgotten what privacy means?

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Privacy, although often talked about, is not something that people of this generation are actively pursuing.

Why not? Is it because we nolonger wish to live private lives?

I’ve talked to many people with a very large online presence, so I understand the glamour that comes with having millions of followers to “like” your every post. I get it, I really do. Our lifestyles the past few decades have changed to accommodate the ever increase technology and social media platforms, and that has also led us to share our every day menial tasks and celebrations to the world wide web through facebook, twitter, instagram, snapchat, and the list goes on.

We know this risks our physical safety (to have thousands of strangers know where we are, what we are doing, what the name of our dog is, what our family and friends look like) but now, with pattern recognition software in social media networks such as facebook, these platforms can, with some accuracy, predict: whether a couple will break up or not based on profile view data, if breast cancer impact a female’s life based on the facebook pages she “likes”, and what brands you are most likely to purchase based on your google searches. All this data helps marketers and advertisers somewhat influence your purchasing behavior, and in the future, may even manipulate your purchasing decisions. 

Marketers put sexually appealing women in ads or attractive photos of food to trigger a Pavlovian response. Commercial images in magazines and TV affect what our society thinks is beautiful or worth aspiring toward. Hyper-personalized ads that target us based on our entire life history of data may someday be able to influence us in ways we can’t comprehend. I’d like to believe I have free will, but undoubtedly, advertising has impacted decisions I’ve made during the course of my life.

Still, there is a great need for privacy. I’m not just talking about government conspiracies.

Chances are the world doesn’t care about your day to day problems, and though it’s nice to share your thoughts with others, you can choose who to share with instead of broadcasting it to the world. Call up a friend, invite them over and share it with them. It will not only build a better relationship between the two of you, but it will save you from getting your home broken into when you’re out for vacation.

We change over time, but if you post something online, it stays there forever. Even the posts I posted two or three years ago are embarrassing to reread. Even if I delete it, I know it will always be somewhere online in the world wide web waiting for some hacker to find.

We say we want privacy, but we don’t actively pursue privacy. We post up photos onto social media platforms, we share personal information (sometimes even security questions for credit cards and social security), we sign documents without reading through the fine print, and we “friend” random strangers in the hopes of feeling a little less lonely.



10 steps to like-ability!

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There’s this one awesome (super popular) guy in my dorm hall that everyone admires. I’m always in awe of how he is able to make such a strong positive impression on everyone, so I thought I’d write a list of all the things that make him so like-able. Due to time and length restrictions, these are the top ten qualities to become like-able. Hope all you guys enjoy!

1. Show genuine interest.

Anyone generally interested and excited by what I have to say will be 100X more favorable in my mind than someone who shows a lack of interest. This guy is a great listener, and he shows his interest in the conversation by giving positive feedback, he sparks the conversation by adding to it with his own experiences, thoughts, and ideas, and then he instigates them to continue talking through more positive reinforcement. You start out smiling and nodding. You assertively add a comment, and then, you continue to engage the person in the conversation. It’s a great sandwiching method that many successful leaders and entrepreneurs use, and can also be used to provide constructive criticism or feedback to someone when you sandwich the negative comment in between the two positively reinforcing comments.

2. It’s okay to have terrifyingly embarrassing photos posted up on Facebook for the world to see.

No, it really isn’t. But the key is to keep the photos up. Never take the photos down because that is a sign of weakness. Unconsciously, he shows the world he is not ashamed of the photo. Real men are still embarrassed, but they simply do not show it.He doesn’t care if you see him in less-than-decent poses because he is confident you will still love him unconditionally after viewing such. In fact, it’s photos like these that make a person interesting and desirable as a companion. Everyone wants a friend who is not afraid to laugh at himself/herself.

3. Make the most of your talents.

This dude plays the piano well. I mean.. really well. There are a lot of great pianists around in college, but he knows how to woo girls through his piano songs. Yes, wooing is more than just playing a long, beautiful romantic song on the piano… although that is 90% of the wooing. 🙂 It means taking the time to know the interests of the person he is playing the song for. He always asks for requests, and this creates affinity since he is taking into account your suggestion and interests into his creation, so in some ways, it’s also our creation. It’s brilliant, and a great way to make yourself like-able.

4. Smart Guys 🙂

Girls have a general consensus that they look for some signs of intelligent life on guys. This guy is very, very smart. It’s just another brilliant way to get people to respect and admire you when you are a genius. Ashton Kutcher told it best. Smart is the new sexy.

5. Make people feel comfortable around you.

My hall mate is very amiable and agreeable. Girls feel comfortable sharing secrets with him, sharing a bed (and blanket), and other stuff too! What’s his secret? Perhaps lots of experience with lots of girls.. but really it’s because he is comfortable with the situation. He makes others comfortable because of his confidence and his own comfort level. You set the mood for others, and this is why “Being Yourself” is so important in gaining rapport with others.

6. Sharing things.

Yes, sharing good free food is the best, fastest way to get college kids to like you. It’s a proven fact. He shares food, secrets, and beds.

7. Kind, Generous, and Humble

He is extremely kind and generous, and this is usually reciprocated by appreciation and kindness. My favorite part is that he often plays off his kindness and generosity and makes it seem as  though it’s just his OCD to fold blankets… hmm.. or maybe he really has OCD, but I’d like to think he’s just really kind hearted. He always makes time to help people out if they ask a question or need help.

8. Persistency works!

I promise repetition shows interest. If you make the effort to get to know someone whether it be to tag along with them all day (and gasp, go shopping) just to get them to acknowledge your presence or to get them involved in some fun creative way (like bake cookies), you are sure to be liked to some degree. There’s a psychology term for this… Reciprocation of liking. Ah yes, that’s it.

9. Create a network. Connect people.

This is a great way to increase likability! You introduce two different people to one another and you get closer to both of them! My hall mate was able to connect the guys in our hall with the girls on the floor above. By increasing the availability of the two halls to meet and intermingle, he has not at all decreased his chances due to increased competition. Rather, he has increased his likability in both halls. How? The guys in our hall now have a chance with the girls upstair. The girls think he’s not available or simply not interested, and therefore by nature are more attracted/curious to know more about him.

10. Get ladies = Automatic Male Respect.

The key is simple. I focused tremendously on his ability to get girls to like him, and this is because it’s easy to impress guys. You see girls swarming around him, and suddenly, every guy want to be like him and be with him to know what his secret is and how he is able to attract girls instantaneously.

So there we have it, 10 awesome qualities to be likable!

Of course it’s also easy to get other guys jealous of you and your success with the ladies, but if you can woo girls, you can woo guys too!