The lines between work and life blur quickly for many internet professionals—myself included. Each blog post, tweet, or photo you share finds its way to a mixed audience of friends, family, colleagues, former clients and potential clients. Personally, I find this limits the subjects I discuss online—you’ll rarely see me branch out beyond the topics of design, surfing, or ginger beer. This primarily stems from a reluctance to share personal details about myself or my family on such a public, and permanent, stage.
Because of my own habits I found it fascinating to read Trent Walton express his concerns that his own fragmented sharing may actually be circling back and influencing his “real life” self.
What I share on the web (and am known for) is mostly work-related. I love that part of my life, but it’s just one part. If I focus too much on that one aspect (Trent-the-worker) I often wonder if I, myself, am in danger of becoming a “poor substitute” in real life.
Nearly everyone I know struggles in some way with separating their online world with the real world. What I find so interesting about Trent’s take is the observation that the limits we place on ourselves in the virtual world can quickly creep into the real world applying similar constraints.