Are you ever just blown away with the power of the crowd and how connected we are today? About five years ago I signed up for a Google alert, called crowd sourcing.
Crowd sourcing is the idea that when you outsource tasks or things, traditionally performed by an employee or contractor, to an undefined, large group of people or community (a “crowd”), through an open shout out, you begin to make much larger things happen. This is an uncontrolled idea verses a typical controlled idea and usually happens through new forms of communication such as social media.
Last week I decided that I would start putting together a weekly blogging plan. After struggling to execute, prioritize, and balance my life, I committed to building a plan. There were a few things I was really looking for out of this plan.
- I wanted better balance in my life. I felt that God, my family, and I all deserved it. I didn’t want to make blogging a priority over any of these things. It’s important to me, but not more important than God, my family, or my own well being.
- I wanted to make sure that all my thoughts, ideas, and everything else got executed and not lost in the thick of my journal and notes. Do you know what I’m talking about? You jot all your ideas and such down, but then it gets lost and never executed. Why do you think this happens? Is it because there isn’t planned time to go through it all? Now I have a weekly time. I go through all my notes and ideas and build them into my weekly plan. This way everything gets done or pitched.
- I wanted to better prioritize and plan out my weeks. Do you ever feel like your week gets the best of you, instead of you getting the best of your week. This happens to everyone, so don’t feel bad. I was not going to let this happen with my blogging. So I made it a priority and built it into my weeks.
This week, as I was traveling and running all over the country I thought, “What would it look like if I took time every week to take my random thoughts, ideas, notes, prayers, and everything else I write down in my journal every week, and build a weekly blogging plan?” Would this help put some structure and balance into my life? Would this help when I was struggling to come up with something to write about?
I was already filling my journal with stuff all week, why not put that stuff to good use? I didn’t want to lose the realness and get to agenda like. But, I did want to make sure all the stuff I was journaling was getting applied and used. A battle went on in my head. Should I build a plan? Should I not build a plan? It went on and on for hours. Then, I thought, “Lets let the journal decide”.
A few years ago I had a conversation with a great leader named Sherman Henderson about appreciation. This man is a great communicator. People love following him because of his genuine thankfulness and appreciation for people. This is why I follow him.
On one occasion I asked him what he does to connect with people and show real thankfulness and appreciation. He said, “Thank you cards”. I asked him to explain. He went on to tell me that he hand writes anywhere from 20-30 thank you cards per week. He said he would send them out to leaders, young entrepreneurs, family members, and anyone else he just wanted to thank and let them know he appreciates them.
After almost two years of using Tumblr, an effortlessly way to pretty much share anything, I decided that I needed to upgrade to something more robust. I’m very thankful for Tumblr, it was a great way to get started in the world of blogging and sharing random thoughts. I remember the day signing up for Tumblr thinking, “What am I going to talk about”. Two years later I have hundreds of thoughts, articles, and insights all online, thankful to Tumblr.
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I’m always amazed with little kids and the things we can learn from them. When we think about learning we usually don’t think about little kids. Instead we think about professors, teachers, or older more successful individuals. Why do we think this way? Is it because we know that they have gained the knowledge and experience that we seek to learn? Probably. However, what might they be missing? Is it presence? Maybe unconditional love?
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Last week Sunday morning I started to get a sore throat. You know the ones where you can feel the snot draining down your throat? This was the one. I didn’t think anything of it at first. I had plans for that day; church, run, maybe take a nap, and have dinner with the family.
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During Church it hit me like a ton of bricks. My nose filled up, throat continued to hurt, and my head was pounding. At this point I knew it was over. I went home, crawled into bed, and didn’t wake up till the next day. The next day I woke up and nothing had changed, other than everything was worse. I decided to take a hot shower and rest some more. I thought maybe If I just rested it will go away. It’s now Wednesday March, 2 and I still have this stupid cold. It is holding on for dear life. It’s like my Grandma on a roller coaster. Have you ever taken your Grandma on a roller coaster? You should try it sometime!
Where do you store your stories? Are they in the closet, locked away? Or, are they being embraced and used to honor and Glorify God. I think to often we take our stories and throw them in the closet, lock the door, and throw away the key. We think to our selves, if we just put this in the closet, lock the door, and throw away the key, then we will never have to deal with it again. We say things like, let the past be the past. I understand why we do this, we want to forget about it. That traumatic event that totally changed our life, we want it to disappear.
The interesting thing? The key always show up. What I mean is that we never actually let go of our stories. They creep up on us out of know where. They sit in the back of our minds. They knock and knock and knock. Eventually we get so annoyed that we have to let them out. Do you think it’s God knocking. Maybe God is saying, “it’s time that you use My story to honor me, do not be afraid for I will be with you.” Have you locked away your story? Is it time that you let it out? Have you ever thought about sharing it? Remember, it’s God that has allowed you to live that story that you are locking away in the closet.
Think about the last time you had anxiety about something. Did it help the situation or hurt the situation? I would assume that it didn’t help the situation, but only made it worse. Then afterwards, you were probably either thinking, “what just happened to me” or you were thinking, “that wasn’t so bad, why was I even anxious.”
The answer to this self reflecting question is that anxiety is something we all face and we must start to develop tactics and strategies for overcoming it – or it wil always beat us.