Posts Tagged social media
It has been cold in the UK for about six months. I have had a cold and viruses for about 4 weeks. The family was ill. Not only did we change seasons into spring and turned the clocks back, no we also passed Easter with little sunshine. Maybe I should have immigrated to Australia whilst I had a chance? But then, I would most definitely be moaning about the heat.
The weather, one of the most discussed topics in Britain I believe. But 6 months of winter? That’s half a year in the shade, that isn’t typical. Some people predict a wet summer and another three weeks of cold winds. Oh how do I miss my Italy and Spain trips
Anyway, this weekend finally saw some sunshine. We got out in the garden (pictures to follow tomorrow), and we went for a nice walk. Still cold but better!
I started following a few new spiritual and motivational blogs. Looking at the quote – did you live today? Did you make a difference? Follow your passion? Your dream? Did you help? Did you or society make a step in the right direction thanks to your contribution?
In about a month time I am hoping to join a charitable organisation. The final decision is next week, followed by an application (or invitation really) early May. Subject to approval I would join a group of people that get together to discuss how they can serve. Serve a purpose, serve others and be of use to society. Isn’t that great? More to follow.
Hopefully towards the end of the year I am planning to join another institution to do good. It makes you reflect a lot. To serve. To do good. I want to contribute to society, help others, network and be part of a group of likeminded people. You gathered that I enjoy those things. Being a member of a German fraternity to serve society and business was my first step in a direction of personal development through club memberships, gaining valuable input from members with a variety of backgrounds. Mentors. I am sure you remember last week’s post.
On slideshare I uploaded a presentation with 10 principles for success.
I set myself the goal to write more about management, personal development and business principles. Currently, I am reading a few new books with new aspects of organisational skills, how to structure your brain and mind, as well as how to apply this principles to time and personal management. I find that there are new theories refining the old established principles.
For instance the 7 habits of highly effective people, of which I got a copy in 1998, which I then discussed and “dissected” in my MBA six years later, are still true; nevertheless the world has changed in the last 15 years and I believe that some of those habits, or other guides of being successful, efficient or productive, need a bit of a review or addendum. So watch this space for more updates.
A final note on updates. I have now started using Google+ a lot more. I find that LinkedIn is great for business relations and networking, and so is Xing to an extend, and Twitter is great for some noise and updates for the community; Google+ is nice for sharing essentials, public personal stuff that you don’t need or want to hide on Facebook, and it is good to join the debate in communities which I find lack in terms of discussions in the public Linkedin forums and to a certain extend on Facebook. The latter due to people not wanting to be “seen” in their private environment. Makes sense?
Anyway. A short and exciting week comes to an end.
Spring is in the air, or is it?
My parents came for a visit, quality family time. With my parents I managed to clear the loft, put the floor boards down, tidied some rubbish away and made lots of space. We also managed to get a night out in the pub and got on in the garden whilst having two baby sitters I sometimes wonder how life would be with family in close proximity. Also I made good use of the EUR-GBP exchange rate by stocking up on some wine. Happy days
I am happy, are you?
Hopefully I can go back on the treadmill this week. I still feel a bit under the weather but a lot better than I have been. My energy is coming back and I am ready to rock ‘n roll.
Watch this space
I only recently found out about the Blog Action Day, where people around the world blog on a particular day (today) about a particular topic: The Power of We.
It is about: Community, Equality, Transparency/Anti-Corruption and Freedom: The Power of We is a celebration of people working together to make a positive difference in the world, either for their own communities or for people they will never meet half way around he world.
Now here are my thoughts: The power of we is an interesting topic. We? We means you, I, us. Some group of people that are connected. That can be due to a common interest, through social media, a third person, an event, coincidence etc. you are probably aware of the theory that we are all connected in this world by never more than six people in between us (six degrees of separation). So the meaning of we is not defined by presence in one space but by connection.
I know people I play chess with at the other and of the world. We play chess. There are people I know from when I went to high school in the USA over 15 years ago. And I know my neighbours and we have things in common. I commute with the same people every day but I don’t know them. But we are a group. We. And by being in any of those groups we got power. Power to complain to our train company, or power to help each other if the train had an accident. We are connected as a group which ultimately gives us some kind of power, or even energy I suppose. My chess friends and I have the power to play and fight each other virtually online. We might want to change the rules of something. I am getting at something now, which probably fits right in.
Through social media, Facebook for example, you can join a group with a common interest to exercise power or influence someone in that group. Twitter on the other hand is more random I think. You get interested and connected to people via a very random conversation. Without any intend to join a group or discuss a topic. You just start joining in and end up forming a virtual group. Without you realising you become powerful, attack brands, advice people and become authority, supported by a virtual group.
We become power. The power of We. We become influential. Across borders. Social media let us do it. Being part of #BAD12 allows us to become a we with the power to write about us, our power and influence, our thoughts.
We can change the world.
We got the power, join us today.
Have a great “bad” day
I have been joining Foursquare a few times in my career in digital. I joined it, quit it, joined it and quit it again. I didn’t want anyone to know where I was, particularly if I left home.
However, not too long ago, I finally joined for good. Joining for good meant for me to be part of the Foursquare community. I tried to get as many mayorships as possible in as little time as possible.
In my 64 days I checked into over 400 venues. I managed to gain 11 badges and 9 mayorships. Most of them are my regular train stations and of course home and work. So I am not sure how successful I am.
In the UK you find that only a few shops offer promotions, so the reason to join Foursquare is more about “see and being seen” and showing off where you are. This could be “dining at the Ritz” for instance or “checking in at the Charlotte Street Hotel”. I haven’t found use of meeting people using it yet, and I haven’t used any promotions yet.
So as a conclusion after using it for as short as 2 months, I think it is a nice game. Something that is fun to do, and potentially has an attraction particularly if you are in an environment and within a community where people use it a lot.
As a friend suggested, in the US this has a more relevant use as almost every shop is using it for promotions and hence it is more useful and commercially viable.
So until I either live in the US or Foursquare offers more promotions, e.g. pairing up with Groupon, I think I might be a little less active than I was.
Location Based Services (LBS) is still on the raise, and having the option to not share a check in, makes it a lot more attractive and safe too. However, I just cannot see the full benefit yet.
My head is spinning for several reasons this week. I had a interesting week with lots of things to think about, some work related and some private things.
Let me start with the London riots. I published my thoughts and fears, as well as my Buddhist thoughts on it too. Without twitter and the update from our @beckenham community tweet, I think I would have been more worried. As David Cameron said, no one should be fearful in his own home. I would have fought for my rights and safety of my family and community. However, I never thought I had to feel like I did in the UK
This leads me nicely on to the next topic. For a while now I am debating with my wife and work, whether the UK is the country we want to work and live in. Don’t get me wrong, I am very happy with both my job and the UK, but after 10 years, I am thinking, whilst the kids are still young, whether we should try a few more countries before we make a final decision where we’d like to settle and bring up the kids. This is a decision that is not to be made before next year for various reason I don’t want to go into just now and yet.
However, I met a good friend of mine this weekend; I met her 10 years ago in Aberdeen. We had different lives but both being German, we had lots in common and good conversations back then. For the past 7 years I lived in London, and she lived in Aberdeen. We both got married, we both had children. Now she lives in London and after a long 7 years we met again. And, as described above, she is in a very similar situation: she wouldn’t return to Germany, would like to live abroad for a while and then decide where she wants to settle. It was really good meeting her and her husband, to discuss dreams, thoughts and just to catch up on a long time we mainly spoke via Facebook A sad life social media plays, no?
On the note of social media, and I know I am going on a bit, we have Twitter that saved my sanity this week. Heello which is a twitter clone I signed up for, Facebook which is great to keep in touch with friends over time and distance, and of course Google+. It is getting a lot, but that is the industry I am working in, the thing I do. I love social and online but sometimes feel I should be more disconnected. Could my next 30 days challenge be to stop using Facebook? To not tweet? That would be hard. And amongst all the social media, there was one person this week that kept me sane, just by being normal and a good mate – in the real world too.
I am not sure what it is but I’d call it Sehnsucht which translates to longing. I am longing for simplicity without missing out on things and giving up what I enjoy. I am longing for freedom and peace without giving up the choices, loved ones and friends I have. I am longing for stability, planned future and a normal life.
I guess I am just a bit sentimental and think too much about life. It is silly because life is going to do what life is going to do. Simples.
Alles wird gut, ich vertraue Dir.
Have a fantastic week, I am looking forward catching up with some really good people!
Will social media make us live forever?
Another fascinating TED Talk.
What I like about blogging is that actually more people read my posts than anticipated. Not only my boss makes comments, but also my clients. I like it, and the good thing is that I don’t think of changing my style or content just because they do.
Social Media, and surely a blog is part of it, is social, open and determined to ask for comments and discussions. The only difference is Facebook. Or is it? I have this love hate relationship with Facebook. Whilst Twitter is open, links with Linkedin, and the aim for me is reach, Facebook is private. Private to the extend that I am connected with some clients and some work colleagues.
A friend put it a while back as “Facebook are the friends you would invite to your next big birthday”. He is right in my opinion. However, there are still people that insist being my friend and my social life from the USA 15 years ago is all on Facebook, my only connection. But not everyone can see my full profile there, which makes is unsocial if you like. So really, Facebook is selective. Actually, I am thinking of changing it and open it up to everyone, however removing people I wouldn’t invite to my 40th….
Looking back at the week, it was an up and down. Monday was an additional day off and the pizza I made was soggy. My wife always hates me for making soggy pizza, so I have to perform this weekend Tuesday back at work was just one thing: busy. Wednesday working from home I didn’t finish until 10 pm. Thursday we had a major meeting and a lot of things to finish, so that Friday was just a wind down really. One of those bank holiday weeks where you just want to get to the end as you cramp 5 working days into 4. Have seen it all before.
On Thursday night I met Peter. He told me the story of John Snow, the man who found the outbreak of cholera in Soho, London. The story goes, as John Snow traced the outbreak to the water source (the water pump on Broadwick Street) everyone started drinking beer in the pub next door, now called the John Snow (probably more known for gay couples kissing these days). Maybe the early start of binge drinking or just the old excuse Anyhow, it was a great evening, chewing the fat about the industry, technology and life in London with a family.
Now, this really wraps up my week. I can’t wait for next weekend when my older one turns 2. I cannot believe he has been with us for 2 years already. Fantastic, and I hope to put together a little birthday post for him.
Just this weekend again shows why you love being a parent. Friday night Colin got really upset around midnight. He cannot say what bugs him yet, so it takes a lot of cuddles, convincing, a drink (of water) and a cookie to calm him down. Just when you go to sleep around 1 am, the next one wakes you at 3 am for his night feed which turns out to be a “mini feed” and you wonder why he woke up in the first place. And, just back to sleep, dreaming all sorts of wild things, you wake at 5.30 am to feed again, close your eyes to hear the older one next door. Wow, it is 7 already. Yes: we spend 7 hours in bed. No: we didn’t sleep more than maybe 4-5 hours.
A lot of people might not understand that you can function on little sleep. I have done it before, e.g. slept 5 hours on average. It is easy. 5 hours interrupted: harder. But you cope. You must. And you enjoy and get a deep satisfaction of being able to be there for someone who needs you. No one can take that feeling away from you, that deep love and understanding of each others needs. No matter what. The love for a child goes beyond any other love I have experienced ever. And for nothing in the world would I want to miss that.
I’ll write more about that soon. In the meantime have a good week. June is here, summer is here, and next week promises to be fairly busy again with me being off on Friday and the Monday after (another long weekend ). I am in Leeds on Tuesday and meet with a good friend Wednesday night. My parents and in-laws arrive Thursday for Colin’s birthday. Also, I finally plan to go back to the gym on Monday and swimming on Wednesday morning. Fingers crossed this all works out.
Have a good one,
Back in the days before we had mobile phones, internet or even smart mini computers, there was no way of informing anyone about the birth but getting to a phone box and having change. Things have come a long way.
Facebook and Twitter make it possible to do what I used to do in the navy: broadcasting. And they do more: they offer you, my friends and followers, to comment on what I write. Hence it is a communication tool, very simple.
As most of our friends (I sent a text to about 10 people tonight of whom I know they don’t use Facebook too often) are on Facebook, and we had mobile reception in the hospital, it was a good tool to keep people up to date. I didn’t speak about the gory stuff or anything, but just that we went into labour, that we are making progress, and of course I uploaded the first picture, tagging my wife. Once that was done, the picture was uploaded to my blog and the link sent on twitter for everyone who I am not connected with on Facebook. So everyone I knew then knew.
Everyone? Not everyone. There are still my parents who were disappointed that people on Facebook have seen more pictures of our newest addition quicker than them. Other people that seemed to expect a call from the delivery room. They almost felt left out. Same with some friends who didn’t find out until late because their phone number changed, or they aren’t on Facebook. That is the way it goes, time moves on.
But it also is scary of how willing we are to share information. Some people cannot see my status updates on Facebook, and we try to be as protective as possible. But we also enjoy sharing the love and fun, and joy of having a baby. Most comments were really supportive.
What did my wife think of all that? She liked the idea in general, but almost felt a bit under pressure to perform. Nothing I wanted to do or achieve. Just the opposite. Guess a birth is more private for a woman than a man, and of course I didn’t sit there updating Facebook, smoking cigars, and cheering whilst having a beer and some crisps, watching my wife giving birth. I tried to be selective but informative, as vague or undefined as possible but still wanted to share the love.
It is a struggle to balance social media. It is difficult as it will always involve a whole lot of people – hence it is social And is it wrong to look up the midwife’s facebook profile? You do want to know who you are dealing with? But that is the way it is. You might comment on someone’s picture, take a picture of a hippo, make a funny comment for some and an offending one for others. Where does balance strike. Is it wrong or right what I did?
In all honesty. I enjoyed the comments, the sharing and found it very “enjoyable” to do so. It was (hopefully) the last time in the situation. But I love sharing my life, and my experience. You are just reading about it.
So for anyone not understanding, please shout out in the comment box below. And, for my wife, I am sorry if I shared too many details or if you felt under pressure. I guess I just didn’t get the balance 100% right. Maybe next time…..
Have a good weekend,
A note from Volker
Volker Ballueder writes this blog as a personal blog, so all opinions are his own.
As dedicated family man and a passionate "veteran" of programmatic marketing, as well as a true advocate of Digital Marketing and Apple, he blogs about anything related to his life: family, digital marketing, personal life & opinions, coaching, Buddhism, wine, and much more.
Originally from Germany, he has been living in the UK for over 12 years. He is truly settled in the South Downs with easy commuting distance to London.
I welcome any comments and discussion. Also, feel free to follow me on Twitter (@ballueder).
Love and Happiness,
We should never change our minds about where we are going, but always be curious about different ways to get there.
Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.
We're here to put a dent in the universe. Otherwise why else even be here?
Never look down to test the ground before taking your next step; only he who keeps his eye fixed on the far horizon will find his right road.
The only wealth in this world is children; more than all the money, power on earth, you are my treasure.
The Godfather III
The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both.
- RT @lmastromauro: I'm fundraising for Médecins Sans Frontières (UK) using @JustGiving. Check out my page #JustGiving http://t.co/PPEFu3V7C8
- @Iwantmytrain you should write a guest post on my blog if you like!
- "Twitter Finally Has Two-Factor Authentication: Here's How to Get It" - about time! http://t.co/iMP61GyHVO
- "Trunk iPhone Charging Cable Is Flexible Yet Rigid" what you reckon? Nice gadget! http://t.co/E4k6ml40oT
- @jamesmiesner good idea
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