I have a funny but not so funny story to share. A year ago, my sister and aunt were making fun of me in their boozed out state one holiday evening – joking that if I ever get sick or God for bid, die…we’ll have a “blogger” ceremony and who they wondered would show up. They just cracked themselves right up over this one! If I stopped blogging do I have a , they joked and laughed but is it really so funny? What I do online, who I speak with, consult with and yes mingle with at conferences – it seems so non- tangible to them. One year ago they could not see it, touch it or really comprehend what I do or speak of when I talk, “social media” or “blogging”. I’ve taken offense, laughed with them and yes even wondered if what I was doing, the friends I was making online and the impact I believe I am having is valid; self doubt begins to sink in when jokes and comments are made.
Four things have happened since my aunt and sister joked about my “blogging funeral” one drunken holiday evening (we make great holiday cocktails and rejoice):
1. BlogHer. I took them with me to Chicago as contributors – yes paying there way for the most part and they saw me get up at 8am and come into my room at 4am. They saw that people knew who I was, came up to me as someone they knew or wanted to connect with and best of all they saw that my “blogging” world wasn’t just pretend – thousands of women were there with me! Yahoo! Do a little dance and rock it – I was geeked (or so they say I am) that they got it! My sister wrote me a card after our trip and told me how proud she was of me, how she never knew and could have never known how hard I worked for what and who I am online but also to make a difference in “green living”. She met a client of mine, helped this client out and really was impressed by all that she saw and experienced. Funny thing was, even when I told them I was speaking at this conference, they did not get it: “For blogging?”
2. Contribution. Both contributed prior to BlogHer and that is why they attended (not to impress them but to help me – it was ended up serving two purposes). Now, they ask to write. They ask to review, help and get involved to learn more. Their families get involved and now I have a teen reviewer, my cousin and my brother-in-law doing reviews. Things have expanded when my closest family members recognized what I was doing was amazing, fun, influential and does having an impact.
3. Witness to Investment. This basically means that my sister, aunt and various other family members have started to witness my time investment in social media consulting and the return on investment. Sitting quietly during a one hour phone consultations in my car while I view presentations or hold Webinars – on the fly trying to fit everything in and still take a day off from my day job to Christmas shop. They see this on the fly and they’re amazed as I hold Bluetooth conference calls with Lisa Frack with the EWG or load Christmas gifts into my car while chatting with a client about a online promotion, Twitter party or the new Facebook guidelines. They become amazed at a) the multi tasking skills b) the knowledge c) the awareness’ that I’m not just playing but providing, paying bills and yes making a living in more than one way. (Please note: during my full time job – yes, I do this via lunch hours, vacation, sick time, weekends or shedule and vary my hours to be accommodating: I am never unethical or aborting my responsibilities via contract and obligation(s)-that is not who I am).
4. Anissa. Proof that when someone begins to connect and make friends online and then at conferences and events; they move people…..yes, they connect in a way that some that are not online might NEVER understand but they matter, they make a difference and the wave is massive!
For those of you that wonder about blogging, your impact and sphere of influence:
Why do I blog?
I do not make money, is it worth it?
Have I impacted anyone?
Is it worth my time?
Why should I be doing this, nobody in my family understands and they poke fun at me?!
I cannot answer individual questions or speak to individual feelings but for me personally, I would like to think and believe that if tomorrow I died; I just might have a blogging funeral. I would be missed online and though Google can dig us a grave online where it seems we might not be found – I would be found, missed and others that I’ve connected with would grieve and say a kind word or two. Shoot, my actual in person funeral might have some great friends online attend and for whom my family has now met! So please, do not discount yourself or say you are just” another blogger” out of the millions: make yourself more then that and prove it; even if it just makes a difference for one person. A very timely post was just written over at Pro Blogger on this same topic about feeling as though nobody cares or reads your blog and after reading my post I highly suggest checking out some the Pro Blogger tips on making yourself a better blogger and more noticeable.