Blogging will change your life

by Craig McBreen · 61 comments · Social media


If you let it.

I have a confession to make. Last April I had zero interest in blogging.

In fact I though blogging was a complete waste of time and Twitter was a joke.

A land of inflated egos, false hopes and snake oil salesmen.

Little did I know the old web log would alter the course of my life.

Last May I decided I wanted to be a better speech writer and blogging was the answer. I wanted to start speaking about branding and design.

Something else happened that had a much more profound impact on my life.

That same month my father was diagnosed with a terminal illness.

When someone you love has an incurable illness, it changes you profoundly. I’ve written about him here, but today I don’t want to describe how his failing health sent me into a fit of malaise. It did and still does. In this post I want to focus on how my father’s situation revived my spirit for living. He would like that.

I hope you stay with me on this.

His ill health drove me to reassess my life. What was important to me and what I wanted to change.

What was important to me.
Family. My wife and kids. To me, there is nothing in this world that is more important.

Values and living life the right way. Randy said this best. I have a set of values and I’m sticking to them.

What I wanted to change.
To stop saying I was going to do things and start doing them. Life is short, so live it like you mean it. If I say bomb diggity I now mean it. Thanks, Dad.

The “important” part is the way I live my life already. The “change” part would be labor intensive and scary and very uncomfortable, but change is exactly what accelerated my interest in blogging.

And call me silly, but blogging can change your life. It’s sure altered my course.

I was soon dialed in and ready to rock, but I like to plan and do things the right way.

So, where did I start?

1. I sought out the best, from Netsetters to 20 bloggers to watch, I clicked and studied and clicked some more. You know the drill.

I focused on the usual suspects, from Copyblogger to Zen Habits, but I soon discovered so much more.

Before I knew it, my goal to improve speech writing become something else entirely. I was totally consumed to put it mildly.

Be careful what you wish for, right?

2. I re-booted my Twitter account, so I would actually have a URL when commenting and my fat mug was there for all to see.

3. Commenting terrified me. It did. Honest.
I started adding my two cents and when my comments were answered, I felt like that kid who gets the gold star. Aunt Gini and Uncle Danny kinda rocked my world.

I was soon twitterpatted and thought commenting the best thing since Jello Pudding Pops.

This was a big step, trust me. I’m an introvert, remember.

I also realized I better have a purpose before I start.

4. From May to September I researched, commented, Tweeted like a madman, and researched some more. I met some cool people and was inspired by many.

I also started crafting a humble little blog.

Set. Recalibrate. Roll.

When I finally rolled out post numero uno in September, I had spent about a month writing a mix of posts. Some hit the scrapheap and several I’ve yet to post. But I did start and I am oh so glad I did.

So here I am with a simple little blog that has changed my life. And I do have plans.

In my mind, blogging went from a complete waste of time to life-changing. How’s that for an attitude adjustment?

It’s not just the pursuit of blogging that consumes me.

It’s what it has done for me as:
An accountability platform;
a motivational compass;
a place for creativity and exploration;
a networking village;
and a new business model to alter the course of my life.

Plus it’s Da Bomb! Awesomeness in its purest form.

I do not exaggerate. You’ll see.

So what about you?

I want to know how the act of blogging or social media in general has altered your course. From life-altering to one small shift in direction, I really want to know what Doctor Blog has done for you.

Is your tail still wagging?

What are your big plans for 2012?

Has blogging changed your life?

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{ 53 comments… read them below or add one }

Gini Dietrich January 12, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Hello my friend! I love that you’ve been so clear about why you started blogging and what it has done for you. Not many bloggers start out with a vision (myself included) and it’s really impressive to see how you’ve grown, even in just a few months.

I’m proud of you!
Gini Dietrich recently posted..FBQOTW: Angels, the Super Bowl, and LaToya JacksonMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 12, 2012 at 5:39 pm

Hi Gini,

I love that Aunt Gini is the first to comment. It’s funny, I started blogging to improve that speechification, and after many months have now come back to that, seeking speaking gigs. Thing is, I now have a message, which I would not have if I didn’t pursue blogging.

And, the only reason I have a vision is seeing what people like you are doing AND it’s a big plus getting to know people like you and the others I’ve mentioned in past posts. Almost too many to mention :)

Just wait though, I may end up hounding you for speaking advice. :)

Thanks!

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Gini Dietrich January 12, 2012 at 5:41 pm

I am MORE than happy to help!
Gini Dietrich recently posted..FBQOTW: Angels, the Super Bowl, and LaToya JacksonMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 12, 2012 at 5:42 pm

You’ll regret you said that. Ha ha, just kidding :) Thanks!

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Ari Herzog February 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm

Intriguing that you’re here in the comments but Uncle Danny (and is he your husband or brother in Craig’s blood) is not. Are you doing the commenting for him too? :)
Ari Herzog recently posted..Introducing Mitch Joel: Monday Muse #1My Profile

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Craig McBreen February 13, 2012 at 11:47 pm

I would say Gini and Danny argue like brother and sister and I’m all for the fun that brings. :)

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Marie Ennis-O'Connor (@JBBC) January 12, 2012 at 6:51 pm

Confession time. I am a serial blogger (6 blogs and counting). My first and most successful blog is Journeying Beyond Breast Cancer – a blog about finding my way after my treatment for breast cancer ended. This has grown into an amazing community of women and has been my lifeline at times, in particular over the past few months, when my beloved mother was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. That’s blogging on a personal level but on a professional level, it has transformed my career in public relations and taken it in a new and exciting direction. Once I got hooked on the power of blogging, I introduced it to my clients and became a blogging evangelist. I now specialize as a social media trainer and consultant and I have found my great passion. Next month it will be three years since I wrote my very first blog post. I had no idea where the journey would take me. It’s been an incredible journey and I am still learning and loving it. Blogging changed my life in more ways than I ever could have expected.

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 3:37 am

Hi Marie,

I appreciate you coming by.

Well the type of blog you created is not only an amazing support system for you, but an entire community. I can’t imagine how many women are looking for answers and trying to find their way when dealing with Breast Cancer. Sounds like an amazing community you’ve created.

Interesting that you’ve seen this as a life-changing experience on a personal and professional level.

There is some power in blogging, and it can be springboard for so many other things. It’s great you found your passion through blogging and social media, and it sounds like your trip has been quite the journey.

Wow, three years! Congrats. I guess you’re among the tiny percentage of people who are still around after three years.

Thanks for sharing and thank you for stopping by.

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Jack@TheJackB January 12, 2012 at 7:20 pm

Hi Craig,

Blogging has changed my life personally and professionally. People change naturally because of life and the experiences that we have. I sometimes wonder if some of the changes that I have gone through would have happened without the influence of blogging, but none of that really matters much.

It doesn’t matter because blogging is where I figured out that I had been going down the wrong path. I am a writer. I have known this for years but if had spoken to me before I started blogging I might not have described myself that way.

2012 marks the year that I finish writing my book. 2012 marks the year that I take my blogging to a different level than it has been at. I feel like I am on the verge of something very big and I am excited about it.
Jack@TheJackB recently posted..What Happens To Your Facebook Account When You DieMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 3:45 am

Hey Jack,

That’s what I like so much about this medium. It can be a catalyst for so many things and sometimes, a sorting out mechanism. With so much experimentation, interaction and feedback, AND just honing those writing skills, you discover so much about yourself.

Well, I’m sure glad you discovered your passion. You’re a prolific writer in the blogosphere and I’m glad to know you.

I certainly look forward to hearing about your book. That’s damn exciting.

If you are taking blogging to a different level, that will be something to see. Can’t wait. Here’s to a great 2012!

Thanks for visiting, My friend!

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Lorna January 12, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Loved reading your post about how blogging changed your life. I started a business blog 4 years ago cos I heard that ‘it helps more people to find your website’. I now have 4 blogs and recently started a business showing people how to blog for their business so I love hearing stories like yours – people who blog because they love it and because it enriches their lives in so many ways.
Well done and keep it up :)
Lorna

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 3:49 am

Hi Lorna,

Thank you! It’s amazing how much can change in a fairly short period of time.

Wow, another serial blogger :) Four blogs? I have a hard enough time managing one.

It seems like there are not enough people in business showing others how to blog for business. Well, showing them the right way :)

Thanks for the comment and the encouragement. Appreciate it!

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Lorna January 13, 2012 at 9:40 am
Bill Dorman January 12, 2012 at 8:46 pm

A land of inflated egos, false hopes and snake oil salesmen………we laugh, but we also know that is not that far from the truth. However, when you get past all of that there are some truly remarkable people in here.

One slight housekeeping item: What was important to me.
Family. My wife and kids. To me, there is nothing in this world that is more important. Feel free to slip my name in there somewhere………..in case maybe you forgot.

True story: a local person I know who teaches a social media class at Southeastern University and was actually my connection to Gini has asked me to be a guest speaker at one of her classes. Who woulda thunk that; me, Mr Social, huh?

I thought it was pretty cool; I will definitely do it.

I never thought I would like the blogging part so much, but once I found what was sustainable for me I felt like I found my groove. It’s rock-n-roll from here.

Life changing; maybe a little. I just know I don’t feel so silly driving around town with my King Blogger Burger King Crown on these days.

Great post and you are still a ho BTW; you know what I mean……….:)
Bill Dorman recently posted..If this were my last blog postMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 3:56 am

Hey Bill,

Well, that honestly was my impression before I started on this venture. But once I got into it I quickly realized there were way more quality people involved in blogging and social media. A whole new world opened up, really.

I’ll try and slip a Bill D mention in one of my future posts. “The guy who showed me the way.”

Congrats on the gig, and I say who better? You may deny, but you are indeed, Mr. Social. You know it. Anyway, if you are going to be a guest speaker at a University, I want to hear about it. I just went to meet with a committee at a community college about speaking there, and I’m looking for other venues, so obviously would love to hear how it goes.

Yes, pretty darn cool! And, we do want to hear about it.

You do get in a groove, huh? And it certainly feels better once you are there.

Thanks, and later on King. Glad to know you, even though you call me a ho. ;)

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Mairead - Irish American Mom January 12, 2012 at 8:57 pm

I love this post, and how you confess how nervous you felt leaving comments on other blogs when you first started blogging. I am new to blogging – just 3 months since I started. I love to write, always have, but never before had the courage to call myself a writer. Since I started blogging, I have started calling myself a ‘writer’. Perhaps every word I pen is not as beautiful and eloquent as I might like, but I love the discipline of blogging and how it stirs the creative juices. Thanks for sharing your personal story of connection and transformation.

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 4:03 am

Mairead,

Thanks! I wasn’t exaggerating either :) The first few times I left comments I was apprehensive and felt funny about jumping into someone else’s community. But like anything, if you stick to it, you get better and it’s no so bad. ;)

I’ve been at it just a bit longer than you, but still feel like a rookie. Keep rolling with it!

Well, if you are blogging continuously, you are indeed a writer. But you are so right, even if you feel what you are typing out each day is not as perfect as you would like it to be, the creative process of doing this day after day is amazing. And you can keep honing your craft, every day.

You’re most welcome. Glad you enjoyed and thanks for dropping by and leaving thoughtful comments.

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Deeone January 12, 2012 at 9:50 pm

Good day Craig,

Another awesome post, my friend! It would seem we have a bit in common. I too, started blogging without the intention of not really expecting it to do what it has done for me.

I’ll try to make this a short as possible, but everything that blogging has truly done is a book in itself; which is why I’m currently writing it as we speak. My very first novel.

You see, in September 2010 I lost my mother to a two year fight with cancer. She and I had really had a trying relationship that I luckily made amends with before she passed away; that didn’t stop the feeling of anger and depression after she passed though. So five months after this happened I was in a really bad place; depressed, unemployed, and on the verge of thinking suicidal thoughts.

In February 2011, I started blogging as a sort of coping mechanism to rid myself of the serious case of blues. I wasn’t the most optimistic person to begin with, so this was a HUGE step for me. What would happen over an 6 month period is nothing short of a miracle.

Not only did I lose the blues, but I found myself encouraging and motivating other’s in the process. So in July 2011, I changed not only my perception on life, but also changed the name of my blog and it’s mission. I felt a strong need to find a way to release my old mindset, adopted and learned beliefs and traditions, and make it all public for the world to see.

Man! That was the best thing I could have ever done! I met some awesome peeps, my mindset and me personally was nothing like the guy I knew back in January 2011, and life… my life in particular made a total 180 degree turn. I have a few people that I could contribute this awesome change too, but I know that each of them would say that I did the work and I made the change.

So today, I would tell anyone that actually asked… if they asked, that blogging literally saved my life. And I don’t believe that it’s anywhere through doing so!

The negative dude that always thought the world was out to get him, is the the optimistic, full of life, driven, motivated, almost sickening happy guy that is out to get the world now! ;)

I wake up every single day with the attitude of “Let me at the day! Time to plan and conquer my future!” So I know EXACTLY what you mean by this post, my friend. And it feels GOOD!

Awesome post mate!! Great stuff!! :)
Deeone recently posted..Releasing My MindsetMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 4:17 am

Deeone,

Thank you, Sir!

Writing your very first novel is pretty exciting stuff.

Sorry to hear about your mother and the conflicting emotions you had after she passed away. But it is great to hear how someone in such a bad place after this happened somehow came out of it and is now a changed person.

My story certainly does not compare to yours. I thank you for sharing it. It’s so interesting that you approached blogging as a sort of coping mechanism, but soon transitioned to motivating others, and in the process changed the name of your blog and your mission as a blogger. Very, very cool.

You do meet some incredible people. Smart, creative and encouraging. Sounds like you fit that description. :)

Glad you made it out and made such a big change.

“Let me at the day! Time to plan and conquer my future!”
–Love it, Deeone!

Thanks for sharing your story. It’s very encouraging and hopefully it will inspire a peep or two!

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Bryan Thompson January 12, 2012 at 10:58 pm

Hi Craig. First of all, I’m so sorry to learn of your dad. I am so sorry. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

For someone so opposed to blogging in the beginning, you’re doing amazingly well. And you learned the point of it all. You went to the right places and got the right information. Great work! It’s funny how it changes you, isn’t it? These connections we begin making. And before long, they really become friends. Friends on Twitter, Facebook, Linked in, and blogging that we can come back to, and it’s like we never left.

Appreciate your content, and you, sir.
Bryan Thompson recently posted..3 Benefits to Journaling You May Not Be Aware OfMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 4:23 am

Bryan,

How are you, Sir? Thanks for coming by.

Thank you for the kind words. It’s been extremely tough on all of us, so thanks.

I honestly felt that way before I jumped in. Funny, isn’t it? I really did dive into it and read as many blogs as I possibly could and I did lose hours at places like Copyblogger.

The connections are the best part. Meeting some extraordinary people in this here realm we call social, and looking forward to meeting many more.

Thanks for stopping by, my friend!

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Brian Driggs January 13, 2012 at 12:03 am

What can I say? I like your moves, man. Right there with you.

I’ve dropped the eleventy-billion-word comment here before with my story, but suffice to say, blogging has been the means through which I discovered my life’s work. It was a blogger who inspired me, it is other bloggers like you (yes, you,) who mentor and inspire me to press on, and it is upon a blog that I have hung my shingle.

Blogging has changed my life. It’s introduced me to people all over the world, showing me how the things we have in common are what enables us to realize the full potential of our differences. I’m playing 2012 loose, with a sense of direction, a charge to be more actionable. We’ll see where it leads.

The best is yet to come.
Brian Driggs recently posted..Communication Strategies: Building BuzzMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 13, 2012 at 4:31 am

Hi Brian,

That’s what I like so much about this. I write a post and get incredible comments back. It is actually very inspiring to read the comments and see how this medium has been a catalyst for change in so many. Very, very cool!

Did you just call me a mentor? Me? Not sure I’m there yet, as I feel I’m still earning my stripes, but I do appreciate the kind words, and am very glad there is enough encouragement in the blogoshpere to inspire you to press on. Great news.

Meeting people from around the world is yet another great benefit of participating here.

“The best is yet to come.” Love the positive tone of your comment, Brian. Thanks for the comments!

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Jens P. Berget January 13, 2012 at 4:57 am

Hi Craig,

That’s an awesome story. I can truly relate, but on a different level.

Blogging has also changed my life. I started to realize it at the birth of my kids. I wanted to do something different. I didn’t want to keep working all day away from my family. I wanted to be around them all the time. Blogging, and the feedback I have received have been very inspiring and it has made me a lot more secure as a person. Before I started blogging I was shy, a little introvert as well, but after finding so many brilliant people I know can call friends, things started happening to me.

And blogging is the sole reason why I am now starting my own business, and I’m going to finally be working all by myself. It’s kind of scary, but I’m doing, all because of blogging :)
Jens P. Berget recently posted..How to Name a Business When You Have Absolutely No Ideas LeftMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 14, 2012 at 1:20 am

Hey Jens!

It’s funny how that works, isn’t it. Even though we are in front of a computer interacting, we gain a certain amount of confidence doing this. Just because there is so much interaction. It also helps you discover more about yourself.

That is great, Jens. That is scary, but we don’t make progress unless we take those scary steps, right? :)

Great to hear and I will want to compare notes with you on speaking. I think we’ll both be writing about our experiences.

Thanks for the visit.

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Betsy Cross January 13, 2012 at 9:15 am

Hey Craig,
I’m glad you wrote this and happier that I read it! Sometimes I get stuck wondering why I’m writing, reading and commenting and take mini-breaks because I can’t see the value in what I’m doing. But when I see it from your perspective and how you aren’t stagnating but growing and making new connections and creating new opportunities IRL I’m encouraged, not necessarily because that’s what I want for myself, but because it shows me that this blogging community is more than just a social group going around in circles, talking. The talking is great, and the skills I’m learning are invaluable, but I love to hear how you’re using what you’re learning OUTSIDE of the blogging community.
You’re great!

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Craig McBreen January 14, 2012 at 1:26 am

Hi Betsy,

Thank you!

I agree with you. The engagement is great and so are the people you meet doing this, but I do want to turn this into something more. The blogging world can be pretty insular, but blogging itself is a great way to grow, generate ideas, network and just dissever a passion. But it’s easy to get caught up in it all, because it is rewarding in many ways, and fun too. But I’m learning to set some pretty strict goals for myself in order to get things done.

I not only want to start speaking, but would like to interview people, especially those who are not mainstream bloggers. We’ll see how that works out. But I do plan to write about my experiences and hope people will get some value out of that.

Thanks so much for coming by!

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Jason Konopinski January 13, 2012 at 5:59 pm

When I first started my blog sometime in 2010, I had this idea that I was going to build a consulting business in social strategy and digital marketing. Hah, boy was I wrong there. After struggling through those first few posts, it became quickly apparent to me that my most memorable posts were those that looked inward. I found my voice – and wouldn’t you know, my publishing rate increased dramatically.

Blogging has been a valuable tool in my arsenal as a writer, developing new content areas and stretching my brain out a bit and connecting me vis-a-vis that content to collaboration efforts and business opportunities.
Jason Konopinski recently posted..Language Fluidity, Speech Communities and Social ParticipationMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 14, 2012 at 1:32 am

Jason,

Hey, glad you came by. You really made my Bourdain post over at Spin Sucks fun. Appreciate your comments there.

It’s great you discovered more about your writing, and I get the writing is that much more rewarding too, right? I think if you look inward and write about your true feelings the experience is so much richer for you AND anyone who happens to come by and read your blog. Just glad your publishing rate increased dramatically!

Blogging makes you smarter. Not only because you’re stretching your brain, but you’re meeting so many people who really know their stuff. I’ve met some great people in my short stint and it’s always good to pick someone’s brain, huh?

Thanks! Glad you could stop by.

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Stan Faryna January 14, 2012 at 7:19 pm

Great post. No, really, great blog post! Because Betsy Cross said so.

Blog to be a better you, a truer you, and a you that is more through the hearts and minds of those you read.
Stan Faryna recently posted..Do you describe yourself as a social media [xxx]?! Really?My Profile

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Craig McBreen January 15, 2012 at 10:21 pm

Hi Stan,

Well, Betsy knows her stuff. ;)

“Blog to be a better you, a truer you, and a you that is more through the hearts and minds of those you read.”
–Couldn’t have said it any better.

Thanks, Stan.

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Lais January 14, 2012 at 8:46 pm

It is great the way your blog changed yourself, and how proudly you share this with your readers! It really is something to admire. I recently started a blog myself. I still can’t say that writing a blog has changed my life, but one thing I can really say: it makes me think! Makes me think of my experiences, my actions and they way I feel about everything I write. Each new post actually makes me think further from the message I want to pass to the readers, it makes me think about myself and it helps me to discover a little bit more of he person I am. I will continue this journey and I am excited for where this can take me.
Lais recently posted..Couple’s TeamworkMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 15, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Hi Lais,

Thanks for stopping by to comment!

I thought if I shared what I really felt, the writing would bring it out in others, because we all know the comments are the most interesting part of a post. ;)

Blogging certainly a great way to keep those synapses firing, isn’t it? And I think what you’ve written is so true. The more you write, the more you learn about yourself.

Glad you’re on this journey. The more you do this the more you will discover.

Thanks for the comments, Lais!

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Amber-Lee Dibble January 14, 2012 at 9:20 pm

Craig!
(Me too!!)

Bare-Bones-Truth.
Being here, online (almost 1 year) SAVED my life. Exaggerations are everywhere, we all know this. However, I believe and absolutely FEEL, that all this,(!) the learning, the classes, building the new website, creating and building the blog, the wonderful, inspiring, brilliant people I have met and really CONNECTED with, has saved my life. But more, added so much to it…I am humbled and empowered at the same time.
I, too, have awesomely great plans for this 2012 of possible doom! No doom, here, I believe that. There is so much, too much GOOD and RIGHT.
We have found each other, and will continue until that is all there is… The good and right.
My tail is wagging so hard, my whole body is shaking!
Thank you so much for sharing this, I KNEW I couldn’t be the only one!
Much for today!
Amber-Lee Dibble recently posted..The Chisana News Wire, Issue 1, One Winter’s DayMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 15, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Hello Amber-Lee,

Wow! Well I’m getting some great comments here, and I’ll just put yours right up there. I’m certainly glad blogging has helped you so much, but would be interested in learning more. Sounds to me like you have an amazing blog post on your hands, if you haven’t written about this already.

I feel humbled and empowered at the same time too.

I like your attitude, Amber-Lee. I don’t want to talk about gloom and doom. We all have the power to change our perspective every day and you’re right, there is too much good and right.

Very glad you chose to comment and also happy the tail is wagging. Work on keeping it that way.

Have a great day! Thanks.

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Kaarina Dillabough January 14, 2012 at 11:38 pm

I am plumb out of words right now, but want you to know how much I appreciate you and your writing. That.is.all….for now:) Cheers! Kaarina
Kaarina Dillabough recently posted..An Alphabet of Business Questions and Tips – Letter HMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 15, 2012 at 10:34 pm

Kaarina,

I don’t care if you are plumb out of words. This is a great comment for obvious reasons ;) Hey, I’ll take praise any day. :) Thank you too for the encouragement you’ve give me along the way!

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Hajra January 15, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Hey,

Confession time? ;)

I started blogging when I was unemployed. Just like that, I thought let me do SOMETHING. I was watching million of movies, reading much more and still had time left. So, I just started blogging. Though I am pretty clueless about why I blog, I just blog. The most amazing part was when a local newspaper actually paid me for two of my posts to be published. Not that I am bragging, I mean, people could have read it for free, but yes, it made me feel nice. :)

And even after the job came by, I got busy; blogging always seemed to be something I continued. I am hoping to put on the serious cap and start something serious (they say, we can make money through blogging!) but I know, money or money; blogging and I are going to be together for a long time ;)
Hajra recently posted..Will they call you over for a bloggers party?My Profile

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Craig McBreen January 15, 2012 at 10:45 pm

Hajra,

Well, since you put it that way, thanks for the confession. :)

You say you’re pretty clueless about why you blog, but you certainly must be doing something right if newspapers are paying for your work. I’m sure that did make you feel great. Congratulations on that!

Well, there are more than a few people out there who are managing to eke out a living through blogging and/or the things they do associated with blogging.

Glad to hear from another person who really enjoys this realm and will be in it for the long haul.

Thanks so much for showing up here.

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Joe Hackman January 16, 2012 at 4:44 pm

I always thoroughly enjoy these stories and this one is great. Thanks for sharing your story. It’s great that you let your values drive you to overcome your fears. That can be surprisingly hard to start but really simplifies things in the long run.
Joe Hackman recently posted..Twitter Phishing DM and Fake Twitter Website in the WildMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 17, 2012 at 3:51 am

Hi Joe,

Thank you, Sir!

I truly feel this platform has changed my life. Plus I’m all for tail wagging excitement in 2012.

Appreciate the comments, Joe. Thanks.

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Ralph Dopping January 16, 2012 at 9:59 pm

Craig,

I am sure you don’t need another guy telling you that you wote a TOTALLY AWESOME post but there you go. Can’t help myself.

My reason for blogging is to get some ideas about my industry and my career on “digital” paper as a way to work out my thoughts about what I can do to improve and share my way of working. I have to admit I started by writing first and am now catching up on paying more attention to other sites, blogs and people. I really DO see the value in that. After all, it is called SOCIAL media (caps for emphasis-ness).

I find your writing inspiring; ergo, the amount of feedback you get is monumental. Clearly you are doing something “write” (har, har). The humour in your writing is palpable and makes it enjoyable to read.

Plans for this year? Learn, listen and grow. Get better at offering truely helpful and inspiring content. Thanks for sharing your story about your Dad. You are a brave man for putting that stuff out there.
Ralph Dopping recently posted..That Inner Voice is calling. Can you help yourself?My Profile

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Craig McBreen January 17, 2012 at 3:59 am

Hi Ralph,

I will never get sick of people telling me I wrote a TOTALLY AWESOME post, especially if it’s in all caps! :) Thanks, man!

Yes, it’s called SOCIAL media for a reason. If I had not met so many inspiring and helpful people during this venture, I sure wouldn’t have written a post like this. That’s the fun part, but as you know there is a ton of work that goes along with this, so we need some excitement to keep us on task.

Well thanks again. I really do want to give people a lift, but I also want to be as honest as possible. So it’s all true, I swear. ;) My favorite people are comedians, but I only wish I was half as funny as they are.

I like your plans, Sir. Thank again for the kind words. I really do appreciate it!

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farouk January 17, 2012 at 7:51 am

that’s a great transformation story Craig
i didn’t start with the same ethusiam i have these days as well
just added you on Google+
cheers: )

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Craig McBreen January 17, 2012 at 8:02 pm

Hi Farouk,

Thanks, trying to spread the excitement.

As long as you have enthusiasm now … that’s all that matters.

Just added you back, Sir!

Cheers to you :)

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Samantha Bangayan January 18, 2012 at 12:43 am

I’m loving the tone of this post, Craig. There’s thankfulness here, but also this refreshing energy of change and growth! I’ve seen blogging play very similar roles in my life as well — accountability, networking, creativity. What has most surprised me is that blogging has been a venue for me to counsel myself by bouncing ideas off of my community! It helps me clarify what’s truly important to me, so I can stick to my own path.

Thanks for having me reflect on this! =) Here’s to an exciting new blogging year! =)
Samantha Bangayan recently posted..This Expat’s All-Encompassing New Year’s ResolutionMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 19, 2012 at 12:36 am

Hey Samantha,

Good to see you here!

“What has most surprised me is that blogging has been a venue for me to counsel myself by bouncing ideas off of my community!”
–Me too! With my last post, I received so much help I’m still sorting through it all. Very cool!

Several people I discussed this with weeks ago suggested just asking … that’s what a community is for, right? So I’ll be doing it more often. There is such a diverse range of people I’m engagine with, from around the world, so why not use that combined brainpower and experience, right? :)

You’re welcome and YES, here is to an exciting blogging year!

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Tom Pinit January 22, 2012 at 4:48 am

Hi Craig, tail is definitely still wagging. Some days I feel like I have nothing to say on the blog, yet the posting schedule looms large and I am held accountable to create. Others I’m lying in my toddler’s bed waiting 45 min. for him to go to sleep, and ideas are flying around in my head. It’s been a place for me to focus my creative energies, and to get the word out about my music and the Choro Music Project. Your blog was one of the first I read during my start-up period, so thanks for blazing the trail!
Tom Pinit recently posted..The Evolution of PracticeMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 22, 2012 at 11:41 pm

Hi Tom,

Thank for for both comments today, Sir!

Very glad to hear the tail is still wagging!

Oh man, it’s been a long time since waiting for a toddler to go to sleep, but it seems like yesterday. Did a ton of work in the wee hours of the night back then. ;)

Some say write whenever it strikes you, but I have to have a schedule and commit to it to keep things rolling along. Sounds like you do too, but you’re so right, when that posting day is looming it’s hard to think about anything else.

Hope the Choro Music Project is going well for you. Great idea you have there, Tom!

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Barbara January 22, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Hi Craig,

Love your great post (this one is for your ego!) and comments.

I started blogging with a vision (saved me the trouble of setting any clearly defined goals) and deleted my first comments because I did not dare to go all the way. Writing is one thing but where except in blogosphere do you have the additional bonus of instant feedback? Like Ralph said “Learn, listen and grow”.

Blogging has altered my life, I have become more focused in general and appreciative of human relationships, it is time absorbing to an exasperating point (this is my problem with time management – any good tips on that issue?) but I would not change a thing – right now.

Like Sam said: “Here’s to an exciting bloging year.”

Does it still snow in Seattle?
Barbara recently posted..Viva l’ItaliaMy Profile

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Craig McBreen January 22, 2012 at 11:55 pm

Hi Barbara,

Thank you so much. I truly do feel this way, but I guess that’s obvious with the post.

Yes, having instant feedback is one of the best aspects of blogging. That’s why I wrote that post on my plans. I received some amazing feedback and am honestly still sorting through all the comments.

“Learn, listen and grow” … There’s a tagline. :)

With regard to time management … Well, I certainly had it down, before I started blogging that is! The best way for me to avoid wasting hours on social is to use a timer, commit to one task and quit when I hear the buzzer (or iPhone crickets in my case). I write for one hour every weekday, first thing in the morning, then move into my day job. I try to fit research, commenting, etc. into my day, but often do it at home, after dinner, or on the weekends, when I have time. So much for a perfect model, huh? :)

“Here’s to an exciting bloging year.” A big YES to that!

It snowed for two days and the city basically shut down. So many hills in Seattle and we can’t handle snow. Considering where you live in the town of Basel, that must seem almost comical. ;)

Thanks again!

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Lisa April 12, 2012 at 7:57 am

Blogging has definitely changed my life. I had no idea when it started what I would make of it, or what direction I really wanted to take it in, I just knew it seemed like a great way to make a name for myself and have a working portfolio when applying for jobs in a failing economy, and it definitely became the reason I was hired over the others.

Beyond that it has connected me to my community in a big way as well as positioned me as thought leader in my field of interest.
Lisa recently posted..Today’s Quote: Go Into The ArtsMy Profile

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Craig McBreen April 12, 2012 at 11:25 pm

Hi Lisa,

It is a great way to make a name for yourself and it sure beats the old way of doing things, doesn’t it? Well, it’s obvious in your case, as you were hired over others.

Great to hear all this and love the Vonnegut shot. :)

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