“Move in silence. People don’t need to know your every move before it’s made.”
“Move in silence. Let your work speak for you.”
“Move in silence. Someone is always trying to one-up you.”
In a society where everything is seemingly posted on front street (i.e., social media), it is natural to want to keep some things to yourself, right?
Some say that “moving in silence” is the way to go – Keeping your accomplishments, “moves”, and ideas to yourself.
While there is no concrete right or wrong way to go about how you handle your accomplishments or moves, and everyone’s situation is different, it may behoove you to explore your personal stance regarding just how much you keep to yourself, or post on front street.
The great Terry Wallace once said, “These [*ninjas*] prayed on my downfall,” in reference to his recent success in the music industry. Okay… This was a line from Detroit rapper, Tee Grizzley’s, First Day Out, but he makes a great point! In reflecting on his accomplishments, he recalled how people in his circle hadn’t always been supportive of his glo’ up. When people see you doing well, they can’t handle it! And they don’t want to see you doing well; so, they secretly pray for your demise. Similarly, rapper Lil’ Wayne once exclaimed, “Real G’s move in silence like lasagna,” implying that if you’re “real”, you will keep your moves to yourself, not sharing them with anyone. I’m pretty sure Lil’ Wayne was referencing drug dealing/trafficking… But anyway!
Music and the media have unique ways of manifesting themselves into our lives in ways that we don’t even recognize or understand sometimes. Self-disclosure: I was graduating with my Bachelor’s degree, and hesitant to post my signature cap and gown photos, because I didn’t want my nonexistent haters to pray on my downfall as I took on graduate school! I wanted to be “low-key” like the cool kids, as if my not posting a cap & gown photo somehow made me more mature. My mom, however, could not keep it to herself. She flooded the timeline, yelling from the mountaintops about her baby graduating college and embarking upon grad school. And it felt so good. Like warm, tingly-feeling good. I was glowing from the idea of sharing something that made me happy and proud of myself with the rest of the world. It was in this moment that I began to explore my underlying ambivalent feelings about posting my “moves”, and it went a little something like this pros vs. cons list:
Reasons NOT to post my moves:
- People may become jealous of my success
- People may pray against my success or put some bad vibes/juju/voodoo on my life
- People will think I’m narcissistic, or not humble
- People will shun me for not moving in silence
Reasons to post my moves:
- It makes me happy to share my happiness with the world
- My success may inspire someone else to achieve their goals
- My ideas may be better developed with the help/collaboration of someone reading them
- With so much negativity in the news and on social media, my positive successes can serve to balance the timeline with positivity
- I’m not a drug dealer, so someone praying on my downfall won’t have any legal repercussions (LOL!)
Studies have shown that if you have a goal, sharing it with supportive people in your life will greatly increase the likelihood of your achieving that goal. Say what?! You read that right – Sharing your progress makes you more likely to accomplish your goals. A 2013 research study published in the Journal of Translational Behavioral Medicine found that participants who shared their weight loss journey online lost significantly more weight than participants who kept their journey to themselves, and there are plenty of other studies demonstrating the same phenomenon. Think about it…. Posting your progress will generate support from loved ones and people with similar goals. And who knows, you may attract someone pursuing the same journey as you, and boom! You have someone who understands your struggles AND a new addition to your support system.
“But Ashlei, people will talk bad about you.” Here are some things I realized as I closely pondered over each of the bullets on my “con” list:
1) They’re going to talk bad about you anyway. *insert black girl shrugging shoulders emoji* Wouldn’t you rather give them this glo’ up to discuss? I can guarantee you that if they’re the type to “pray on your downfall”, they’re gonna do that regardless of what you choose to post.
2) If you have people as friends/followers/subscribers on your social media platforms whom you feel are “praying on your downfall”, it may be time to reevaluate your friends list. For some reason, people feel obligated to allow their “haters” a front row seat to their lives. Nope! Cut ‘em off. Delete. Block. Protect your peace!
3) “Moving in silence” is trendy for song lyrics and “staying low-key” sounds cool for Instagram captions under your bomb selfies. But be proud of yourself, celebrate your victories, spread positivity, and inspire others with your story! Reevaluate those in your circle and never feel bad about wanting to share your successes with those who love and support you.
If you’re reading this and you’re like, “Nah, I’m going to continue to move in silence.” That is completely okay! However, I encourage you to engage in some self-awareness activities and examine your reason for wanting to keep your positivity to yourself. Music lyrics? Imaginary haters? Real haters? Fear of others’ opinions? Fear of judgment? Furthermore, I encourage you to think about whether or not you’re truly okay with those reasons.
For some, moving in silence works for them, and for others like myself… We can’t help but to spread this positivity and happiness!
How do you “move” on social media? Are you the low-key type, or do you like to spread your good news down the timeline like confetti? Does it depend on the type of news? The specific social media platform? I would love to hear from YOU!
Be well. ♥
Turner-McGrievy, G. M. and Tate, D. F. (2013). Weight loss social support in 140 characters or less: Use of an online social network in a remotely delivered weight loss intervention. Translational Behavioral Medicine, 3(3), 287-294.