Our reputations mean everything to us. Think back to when you were in school, for example. How overly conscious were you of what your classmates thought about you? Similarly, how much effort and scrutiny did you put into every single thing you did so that you felt confident you were putting the best version of yourself out there?
Yet, no matter how intentional you were about your reputation, if one negative event happened or one person said something bad about you (even if it weren’t true), you knew how much power those actions held in shaping your reputation. Negative perceptions about you could linger for the rest of high school and sometimes even longer.
This is still the case today — arguably even more so. Now that the world has become more digitized, you have to be aware of your online reputation. At MyLife, we say that someone’s online reputation is more important than their credit score. While a credit score dictates whether banks loan you money or give you a credit card, people will use your online reputation to decide so much more about you. This is why maintaining a good reputation is a critical part of everyone’s life.
Now, let’s dive a bit deeper into why your online reputation is so important.
Your reputation could impact your relationships
Today, first impressions are more than an in-person experience. If someone searches your name online, anything they uncover could be the first impression they have of you. If they discover any negative or alarming information about you, they will likely hold it against you. Worse, you might not even realize this is happening if you don’t know what information is out there.
People research other people all the time. Online dating app users look up their matches to ensure they aren’t talking to a fake or dangerous person. If you befriend someone you met on social media, they will browse through your posts and pictures to spot any red flags. If they see anything that isn’t in line with their friendship standards, they will unfollow you.
These are just two examples, but you get the point. If your online reputation is suspicious at all, you could be missing out on some great friendships and romantic relationships.
Your reputation could impact your professional endeavors
For example, you may attract a lot of negative attention if your online presence paints an unsatisfactory picture. This could be in the form of negative comments on social profiles or specific review platforms.
Suppose someone claims they had a negative experience with you because of something they bought from you on Ebay, for example. There is a good chance they will take to the internet to vocalize their complaints about you. Potential buyers may review these and make decisions accordingly.
Your reputation could break down your self-esteem
If you don’t keep a pulse on your online reputation and let it go unnoticed for too long, it could have a significant influence on your self-esteem. While it’s important not to obsess over your reputation, a constant reminder of any damaging information that exists about you online can eventually take its toll. For this reason, it’s imperative to be proactive about managing your online reputation. How can you do this? Services like MyLife.com allow you to improve your online presence to reflect who you really are. At MyLife.com, you can also remove your personal information from sites you cannot control.
We can’t control what others share about us online, but we do have influence over how we appear across the web. It’s time to put your reputation first and take ownership in protecting it for years to come.