Monday, 5 May 2014

How to Not Fall Down Rabbit Holes

I've really dipped into the blogosphere lately and I think I've fallen down about fifty different Alice-esque rabbit holes.

High Rise Perspectives like this always feel like I'm falling up. Forever. And ever. And ever.

How do you figure out what exactly your goals are when you're in "soak up as much information as possible" mode? Especially because it's possible some of it won't stick. Or you'll read it. Be amazed by it and then have no coherent thought left by which to respond to it; literally, through a posted comment, or just metaphorically, through your own mind.

Take it from me. Right down the rabbit hole in the rabbit hole in the rabbit hole in the rabbit hole.

Also known as: I am learning about how to navigate life as 20-something who does not want to just procreate the same social norms which have been occuring over the last century and as such is working on overcoming that little thing called fear. Especially the type of fear related to communication.

Ironic? Yes, definitely. I mean, I'm writing this which all of you are now reading. Communication right there.

Anyway, in my rabbit hole of a weekend I realized the way to figure out out what exactly your goal with all this reading is to communicate with the other bloggers you are reading. Even if they're the rockstar elites of the blogosphere.

It's terrifying. It's the thing that sends me down the trail of fear and as far from the exciting rabbits hole of the blogosphere as possible.

On the other hand. That is exactly why you want to do it. And the best part? At least your comment is in writing. So you don't have to deal with choking on your own words, mumbling, speaking too fast, or having that voice in your head after the fact saying "why the flip did I say that?!"

Cheers to the delete button! Except, do not. And I repeat. Do. Not. Use that delete button to get rid of your whole comment as you scuttle off that blog of awesome, like that of Tim Ferriss . He has a post 8 Steps to Getting What You Want...Without Formal Credentials that I am telling about you right now so that if I fall off the wagon of one of those steps in the following months as I work on this blog, one of you can snark at me to get back on because you want clearer content aimed at your desires. (Though I will admit I have yet to comment on any of his awesome yet).

I have however commented on a few posts by the knowledgeable Adrienne Smith whose whole platform is based off how having connections with people is the way to go to get noticed. Of course, as with those simple things, it's actually more complex, particularly when you decide to take up a Corner of Ocean Net. It's a whole sea of little fishes in here, from teens tweeting about their lunches to businessmen fielding their products, to artists just trying to get noticed, to Tumblr...which is a very frightening rabbit hole you will never leave. (Said from an experienced Tumblr surfer, who did it so much very little happened on her blog there).

So anyway, once you start commenting, you will probably, eventually start getting comments back. I did from Adrienne. It was equal parts terrifying and amusing. I know on one level she does it for everyone who comments on her blog, retweets or favourites on Twitter; it's honestly flipping common courtesy to do so. Just as it is in real life.

The point is though, once I started commenting, I started seeing real people. Not just names with the occasional profile picture. Through this I realized my goals with blogging are not all about getting big and business-like as many of the large blogs out there are. I just want to reach out to people who are like-minded in hopes I might offer them some insight or a new perspective they hadn't thought of with a certain problem before. Just create a community. You might be surprised when you also come up with that same goal at the heart of all your business, fame and fashion goals. Once you have that goal however, make sure you don't forget those things likes strategy and a plan with an implementation of knowledge and skills.

But before you start implementing your carefully organized knowledge and skills, you still have to not go crazy. And what's the answer? Just make connections. Find the real people.

Savour those little moments when things stop because your phone just beeped an alert to something. (And don't tell me you don't get a little excited to see who's chatting, whether it's a close friend of many years or a new one through Twitter). Appreciate that human connection, stretched though it is through kilometers of physical geography and the pixels of your device's screen to the other person's screen.That human connection is why you are in the rabbit hole of social media in the first place. It is not to go big fast and furiously. Sure, that's an awesome side-effect and a good goal to perhaps aim for eventually. But even when you get big. Don't forget those connections. They'll probably be what got you there in the first place.

The Earth has been said to be a big, wide world out there, beyond your door but the Internet is even bigger. It's eternity. It's the Song That Never Ends. It is Time.

Now wave hello. Communicate with it. I've heard Time likes carrots. Maybe give it a few.

When you get into social media, whether it's Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr, YouTube, DeviantArt, Reddit, Delicious, Digg, Pinterest and all the bits of the blogosphere that go with them, communicate with people. It'll stop you from getting lost. From getting discouraged. And ultimately, from going stark, naked bonkers.

Once you've done that you might realize most things we do as humans all link back to a desire to find like-minds; to find a tribe (if you will) and support it, cherish it, live it.

Happy rabbit hole falling! If you really want to get lost. Start here, with Time Travel, at TVTropes, the one stop drop for all sources of literary tropes in your favourite entertainment.


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