tools: some networking thoughts

Networking and collaboration are hard. I’ve been struggling with it the past year, I don’t think I have the perfect answer yet, but I’m finding some ways to make it easier. But first (this does all tie in together, trust me please) .. This is a very very long post so I’m going to cut it here and if you want to keep reading on this post which has suffered minimal editing, please go on. If you wish to skip the post I just want everyone to know (because I’m crazy like that) I have successfully executed my first short-row toe-up toe. I think these are my best short-rows yet. Not perfect but much improved.

Sara nominated me for a thinking blog award. To say I was surprised is the truth, even if trite. Thank you Sara! I love you too and I’m very pleased to know that I inspire you. I am an adventurous knitter mostly because I’m too stubborn and stupid to understand that something is hard. I’m going to get this whole spinning thing. One day. ;) You inspire me lots as well, and I’m putting up here at the topish of the post that I am honorarily nominating you for making me think. You have a ton going on in your life and you spin your posts so positively and I really really hope that things get better soon for you. {{HUGS}}

That said before I move on into more of what this award means, I want to say I’m struggling both personally and professionally to find direction and while I believe strongly that I am a renaissance soul I worry that I’m a bit too scattered. I’m still crocheting and knitting so I think I’ve found much of my place and know that I’ll always expand my interests. In any case, the past four to six months have been really rough. One of my clients (aka my old full time gig) has had a bit of staff shake up with good people moving on to new opportunities which meant that I stepped in to cover and ease the transitions. They also had some pretty intensive infrastructure upgrades at the same time and no matter what those types of things are stressful. School this semester was not what I expected. Compared to the work load and expectations of last semester it was as if i was in different dimension. I learned things but not what I think the courses were designed to teach me. The instructors and the program are both new. I’ll leave my public statements at that for now. Because of the increase in time onsite for that client, my school schedule, and several other projects for clients the apartment is a mess, I haven’t cooked well, and I in general feel overwhelmed and unable to catch up.

I go back and forth about posting this publicly .. mostly because I hate what has come up around it. The doctors have explained my fatigue and pain by deciding that I have fibromylagia. I take no prescription drugs for it and mostly manage it by avoiding stress and attempting to eat right. Oh and lots of nice warm baths. If you want to know sort of what I feel like most days, you know the lead apron for dental x-rays? I feel like I’m wearing one every day it’s worse when it rains and is grey out for long periods of time. I also often have what’s known as “fibro fog” where I’m forgetful and have horrid headaches. I’m supposed to exercise. While I honestly haven’t run since that first Sunday I’ve been walking more. Thanks to Kat I signed up for the 2007 Woman Challenge. I need to do more. Also, Spoon Theory is also another good explanation of how I often feel. I’ve been running on negative spoons since about mid-November. I’m struggling now to stay awake to write this (it’s 8:40pm) but I will feel better once I’m done. Having my laptop on my lap does help. ;)

So anyway, I have a little company. I incorporated two years ago, perhaps prematurely as I’m still really not sure what I really want to be doing. For ages I did tech support because it paid the bills, more recently I’ve found myself as a web designer (which I think I’m not very talented at). I sort of know what direction I’m going but I need some help refining that message and then figuring out how to get it to potential clients. I’ve been working with two very great people recently and I hope to be able to further develop these thoughts this summer and share parts of the process with you.

Ok, back to that award:

The participation rules are simple:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
3. Optional: Proudly display the ‘Thinking Blogger Award’ with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn’t fit your blog).

I disagree with 1, but whatever. Here’s my list of five blogs and bloggers who make me think. There really could be a long list, but some of them are no longer blogging publicly for many reasons and I miss them and I’m limited to five. I will try to highlight a post or article of someone who has made me think in each future post (every day), but for starters, you can just check out what I’ve shared from google reader, (gets sidetracked and wonders if it is possible to write a greasemonkey script to easily share between google reader and clipmarks (which I rarely clip to because it doesn’t yet fit into my workflow) [sorry eric].

So, without further delay in no real order:

  1. Corrie Haffly.
  2. Dave Seah.
    Dave and Corrie are awesome. I met Dave at least a year and a half ago now and I recently met Corrie through Dave. We’ve not yet met in person. Dave is here on the East Coast, Corrie the West. I do not recall how I found Dave’s site but something clicked. All I can say is go read. I’ll wait. Yes, he has lots of archives. I’m patient. Back so soon? Ok. Corrie has been blogging publicly at her site for only a short while, but I find her posts and tutorials quite inspiring and I love her book reviews. Plus her groundhog is really fun. She, Dave, and I have been emailing a good deal recently and she and Dave knock my socks off and inspire me to great degrees. I hope to be like them when I grow up.

  3. Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, the Yarn Harlot. Come on, who didn’t see that one coming? Stephanie puts me to extremes with laughter right when I need it and tears and amazing good deeds (which I can’t link to because they are so numerous). She’s an accomplished woman and I want her to be my sister at most distant—a cousin. I thank Stephanie for all the gifts she has given me already with her writing and her public speaking and those we do not yet know about. Heck, I wore two different socks (they were both hand knit) today. I doubt I would have done that several years ago (yet alone wear the colours I was wearing). I had first stumbled upon Stefanie long before I was using the power of the web to finally “get” how to knit. I read her off and on and then in force for the past year and a half. Thank you Stephanie.

    Ok.. these last two were really really tough to chose. If you weren’t chosen please don’t feel left out. I hate that sort of thing and except for when we played indoor gym hockey in elementary school was almost always the last one picked. [I was a good goalie, despite apparently have 20/200 eye sight. I’m still trying to figure out how I blocked goals, but whatever. I busted three pairs of glasses once we discovered and corrected that issue.]

  4. Franklin Habit‘s The Panopticon. Just everything, most recently Apples for Everybody made me cry and I have in draft format in my head my response. If I can find my college application essay I’ll include that as well. i have teaching in my blood so this is a soft spot of mine. I have been known to force refresh google reader to see if Franklin’s posted yet. ;)
  5. Jessica Hagy‘s Indexed. She really makes me think. I am about 48 posts behind in reading all of what has been published, but Wow! Venn Diagrams RULE!

I guess you want me to tie all of this in together? Ok… by reading all of these blogs (and I know I read somewhere recently [link lost to the unknown]) if you need inspiration read more blogs … that by reading all of these sites, following links beyond .. I meet people, I find inspiration to fuel my creativity, I feel feelings that generally lack during my daily rat race grind [I need to find my copy of The Phantom Tollbooth and reread it]. I learn things about myself and others. I think really that is what networking is. It’s still not easy and I have no real idea how to do this.. I’m still working on it. Ok. I’m really going to fall over now. This post took much longer than expected due to my machine dealing pretty unhappily with a few memory leaks. I’m going to post and then take a warm epsom salt bath (also this link, note both are new to me) and go to bed. Hopefully tonight the rest I receive will be refreshing. We’re installing a fan (our HVAC isn’t on AC yet) and switching the blankets around.

Wow. You made it this far? Thank you and good night.

Reader interactions

3 Replies to “tools: some networking thoughts”

  1. I really enjoyed the Thinking Blog award and felt so honored that Sara listed me too.

    I understand that overwhelmed feeling of being stretched too thin. For me it means it’s time to re-prioritize what I’m doing. Plus take a vacation if possilbe. :) Hope you rest was refreshing.

  2. I had a tough time choosing just 5 blogs too. I meant to put a link in the post for my bloglines, because I read all of them too. I’m very picky about my bloglines and if I get bored with a blog I will delete it off, so it is very up to date with what inspires me. I think you chose well.

    I understand the not feeling well too. This week (and last) I have kinda overdone it. I have really only had the energy to knit lately, which isn’t such a bad thing. I just need to get some other things done too. I hope you feel better.

  3. […] Penny sent a Thinking Blogger Award over quite a while ago, so you could say that I’m batching my award posts. Now it’s my turn to share five blogs that make me think, but only after posting the official rules: The participation rules are simple: […]

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