Less features, more community.

The price of a self-hosted WordPress blog is too high- not because of the cost in dollars, but because of the loss of the community I share with other bloggers. Continue reading

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Inspiring Blogger Award

I have been nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. For this novice writer, this is a huge deal. I want to thank Living Life Positively for nominating me. His blog has been a great source of inspiration to me as well.

Part of being a recipient of the award is stating five things about myself. I’ll try to list things about myself that effect what I write about on my blog.

1. I have a background in marketing. I have owned and operated my own modestly successful promotional advertising company. This is when I first started getting really interested in what makes people tic. I looked deeper into psychology and decision making models. My interest was primarily in learning how to manipulate consumers, but I ended learning more about myself.

2. Kind of contrary to what someone might expect if they’ve seen me in a professional role,  I am very much an introvert. Much of my free time is spent in my head. I always feel like I always have two thought processes going on- one dealing with whatever is going on around me, and one analyzing and deconstructing some abstract idea not always relevant to the moment.

3. I have an INTJ personality type. I have been mistaken for a sociopath. I am not very reactive to situations on the the surface, but I really am an emotional creature. I tend to remain aloof from emotionally charged exchanges. I am friendly with everyone, but I don’t have many friends. Those friendships I do keep are deep and meaningful relationships that can survive anything.

4. I have read and re-read some Taoist books since I was sixteen. I have been aware of this whole other way of living and thinking- this whole other level of existence- for half my life now, but it has only really taken hold of me in the last couple years. I understood the principles, and saw their potential, but my Self and all the other learning got in the way for all those years. I needed to unlearn a lot. I’m still unlearning.

5. I am a knowledge hoarder. If I find a good or inspiring idea, or think I have come up with one myself, it gets recorded. I save interesting pages on the internet even though I can always visit them again later. Sometimes I’ll print them. I paid a therapist to be my communication/relationship coach some time back, and I recorded and codified everything he told me.

The second, and most difficult part of receiving this award is nominating others to receive it. The gentleman who nominated me would have been on this list if he hadn’t been the one to nominate me. Another great blog NIKOtheOrb would have also been on here, but she had been nominated yesterday by someone else- hours after I decided she was to be on my list! You know a blog is great when…

All of the blogs I follow have been inspiring to me in some way, and I continue to watch their posts. Some of the blogs that I follow have recently received this award, or they’d have also been in the runnings for this list. Without further delay, and in no particular order, here we go:

Clotildajamcracker

Daina’s Book

Moment Matters

Dharmamitra Jeff Stefani

Endless Light and Love

(I have linked to articles of my nominees that got me interested in their blogs)

Random Posts Link

I’ve discovered I can have a link to bring visitors to a random post on my blog. I don’t really have a whole lot of posts yet, but it might be neat to have.

In case you want to add a random post link on your blog, here’s how I did it: I went into the widgets section, of Appearance in the side bar of my dashboard. I added the Text widget. Made the title “Random Post” and inserted the following html into the content area and hit save:

<a href=”https://walkingnoline.wordpress.com/?random”>Click here for a random post :)</a>

(Smiley face is optional) Just replace my ‘walkingnoline’ with your subdomain/blog name and voila!

ICBMs

I was walking on a pedestrian bridge, passing under another pedestrian bridge and I looked up and saw this:

It reads “Every day is a gift.” Someone had reached down through the railings and left these words for anyone who might happen to look up. I was having a bad day, that day- until I saw this inspiring message. It inspired new thoughts about the truthfulness of that statement in my life. These new thoughts changed my mood dramatically and this simple, anonymous, message has stuck with me to this day.

Another time, I was riding the public transit, and I looked out the window and noticed this on the frame just below the glass:

It reads “Smile. You are beautiful. you are loved.” I smiled, and I kept on smiling the rest of my day. I was inspired by the act of leaving something somewhere that could inspire new thoughts, or summon positive feelings, in a total stranger.

It was a happiness landmine. These are brighten-your-day boobytraps.

I have started blogging again recently (on this blog). It was a way for me to refine my thoughts as I write them, and also an exercise in having the courage to share and open myself up. The benefit I am getting from it, however, and the enjoyment I am getting out of it, are so much more than that.

I have been inspired again.

One aspect of blogging on WordPress is people reading and ‘liking’, or even ‘following’, my blog. Initially, I would visit the sites of those who visited mine out of courtesy. Then I realized the people who ‘liked’ my stuff had similar interests and often had interesting things to say on their own blogs. Now, I visit their blogs, because I am finding inspiration- SO MUCH INSPIRATION.

The word inspire comes from the Latin inspirare, which means ‘to breathe into’. The blogs that I have started following and reading have certainly breathed new thoughts into me, new feelings, and a new sense of community and comradeship. My mind is refreshed by the new ideas to process, my mood is elevated by the feeling of exploration, and I feel connected on some level to these bloggers through the exchange of ideas (as opposed to status updates and invitations to play Farmville).

Inspiration from the OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD. Reaching out to the global community. Meaningful messages flying back and forth across CONTINENTS, exchanging views and ideas and feelings….

It’s like I can’t help but trip over countless happiness landmines and brighten-your-day boobytraps on all your blogs, triggering exchanges of ICBMs (Intercontinental Blogs and  Messages) of inspiration. I can’t express enough how much your words can mean- even when you may doubt their worth.

I have learned the same recently. My blog is primarily about a very specific, and very personal, set of ideas and values. Despite that, and despite the unorganized structure of the information on my blog, some people have liked my ideas. Some people are even following my blog, to see what I’ll write next. Some people have even found my ideas inspiring. Inspiring! Wow.

I want to keep putting myself out there and keep taking all of your ideas in.

I’ve been nominated for the inspiring blogger award. I didn’t seek it, would have never thought I’d end up nominated. It may not be a big deal to some, but for this novice, timid writer, it is huge! I printed it off and stuck it on my wall in case I ever pull back from the experience of writing and sharing.

I won’t post the award here yet. I need to come up with my answers to the questions that come with the award and put together my own nominations. For now though, I want to point to a blogger whose writing opened my eyes to all the inspiration I can find out there:

http://imnotdepressed.wordpress.com/