I’ve intentionally avoided blogging up to this very moment. Since my policy of complete and total avoidance is now about to change, I’d like to reflect for just a moment on the change at hand…
Why I refused to blog:
It wasn’t something I felt naturally inclined to do. Frankly, I’m not someone who shares my unedited thoughts freely with others. I’m protective of my fledgling concepts and hate to see them squashed for lack editing and polishing. I’m also intensely private and literally cringe when I see examples of “over-sharing” in social media gone horribly wrong (TMI, impulsive blurting, e-stalkers, etc.). Introversion, insecurity, and paranoia issues aside, the biggest reason for my ban on blogging, tweeting, and social networking has been a combination of where I work and my complete inability to establish a work-life-balance. For the past 8 years, I have been working in environments where sharing in open fora is not allowed unless explicitly approved (and heavily edited by many eager fingers on many keyboards until there was nothing of interest left to share). Having discarded all hobbies, extra-curricular activities, and pretty much everything except commuting and work, I really didn’t feel like there was much left to talk about – certainly nothing anyone would want to read, and definitely nothing I actually wanted to write. I had no desire to start opining on my long work hours, hideous commute, lack of exercise, estranged family members, and other self-imposed constraints. Why add insult to injury? I got enough of that kind of discussion every day at the office. (Before you label me an misanthrope with a penchant for workplace masochism, you should know that I actually recognized my “problem” and did something about it. It just took a really long time).
So, I packed up and I left… And now, I’m here – and that changes everything.
Why I am now going to blog (or, more appropriately – why I am, at this moment, blogging):
It’s required by 2 courses I’m currently taking. You might be thinking, “Great. I am never going to read this blog again. It’s going to be contrite, ill-conceived, mandatory-talk of the worst and most boring kind. Good-bye – I hope your big change works out for you.” Here’s my response… If not for these courses, I would not be taking this step. While the the requirement is forcing me out the door, the journey is still ultimately mine. So, stick around. I might just have a few interesting things to say. I accept and own the fact that I am currently in the social media dark ages, poorly equipped to keep pace with the elite class of bloggers and thought-sharing gurus currently populating the blogosphere. I get it. I’m a techo-relic and an “old” media fossil (hey – who doesn’t love the smell of papyrus and the crackle of an unfurling scroll?). Nostalgia aside, It makes me nervous. I need to catch up. You wouldn’t know this otherwise, but I used to be a triathlete (a pretty good one for my relative weight category…ahem). I like to be in the front. I’m scanning the field and picking up my pace to close the gaping distance. I have no illusions of reaching the far-flung pinnacles of blogging excellence (for instance, you will not mistake me for Dr. Gardner Campbell). Yep, I just just linked to a blogger, speaker, and educator of significance in my first blog. Gracefully executed? Nope, not all, but I’ll work on it. For this, and many other reasons, I will not achieve blogging fame. I just want to figure out how to use this platform, how to make it work, and how to overcome all of my reasons for not doing it sooner. So, you can expect introspection, honesty, curiosity, and a genuine desire to understand and improve. It may not always be enthralling. But it will be mine – and I’m putting it out there.
So, that’s it for blog #1. I appear to be alive and intact. By all accounts, it could have been worse.
(P.S. – this is not intended to address the course requirements…. That will come next. I just wanted to get my blogging Rubicon out of the way first.)
(P.S.S. –No, I don’t think this blog is on par with Julius Caesar crossing the Rubicon in 49 BC… An empire is not likely to spring forth…and culture is unlikely to change when I hit “publish,” but it’s my stigma and I’m celebrating its demise with this particular reference because I can.–)
Wow Leslie- As I read your beautifully written blog- I almost felt like it was typed out for me. I have been in the safe closet of ‘echo-relic and an “old” media fossil’ and had refused to come out in the era of new technology. These GEDI and PFP classes are forcing me out of the shell. And, any change or learning is never easy. But, again as Dr. Gardner said in our class- ‘when we are confused, we learn’. I hope + belief we all will!
Thanks so much for your comment. I literally woke up this morning thinking, “Oh man, maybe I shouldn’t have been so open and opinionated. What if everyone hates this or thinks I’m nuts?” It’s definitely not easy for me. I tend to agonize a lot. Hopefully, it will get better as I get more used to it. Here’s to more blogging exploration!