This week's vlog covers a lot of range. I really hope it doesn't come off too ranty.
I got some sweet footage of a bald eagle out at the Lexington Reservoir in Los Gatos.
Pliny the Younger was just released, and I got the opportunity to try this year's batch.
I talk about taxes and traffic and go out to catch some red-light cheaters. Hey, California, let's work on enforcing the rules we have instead of creating new ones! Stop taxing the people who are playing by the rules and start asking the cheaters to pay more.
Just got home from Austin and finished up the edit for this week. I riff a bit about meeting online friends IRL, my frustrations with California, and some of the clues we found around our Airbnb…
I didn't add it to the vlog, but all of us there from the Beaver Builder team filmed an “Ask Us Anything” AMA style video. I've been successfully working more and more video content into my professional life—which makes the time put into learning all this much more fulfilling.
This week, I dug into the story of what I do for work and why I love it! I tell the story about how Beaver Builder started and why I am passionate about free, open-source software and WordPress. One thing I didn't explain well is that “free” as in software is not the same as “free” as in beer. The code free, but we still sell access to our software and support.
This a behind-the-scenes look at my day of publishing an update blog post and newsletter. I later found out I totally screwed up the email settings and about 50% of all the emails wound up in people's spam folders. Oh well. Live and learn. 🙂 Until next week…
This week, I had an idea all planned out and scrapped it a few days in and decided to go snowboarding instead.
I dabbled with some stop motion animation. I spent 4 days trying to get a timelapse of a flower blooming. I went to the dentist and, maybe as a subconscious act of rebellion, I ate way too many Valentine's heart candies. Enjoy.
I am back at home this week and doing my best to keep the vlog going. I filmed the lunar eclipse and, of course, had to feature Pink Floyd on the tunes for a spacey, psychedelic moon-inspired vlog… Also celebrated my Mom's birthday at an almost-too-fancy restaurant. Good times!
I started off 2018 with a couple of posts on the blog here, but I am also making an effort to start working more with video. I made a two-part vlog about my trip to Denver as an effort to learn about filming and editing. I just finished up the edit on part 2 and I am having so much fun!
I don't know if I'll keep posting the vlogs on the blog, but I do like owning my distribution channel and would much prefer to use WordPress as a hub vs. YouTube.
I love reading and learning. I am a voracious reader, but I very rarely read books. My reading material almost entirely consisted of web articles and blog posts. I was turned on to a book called Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion and I really wanted to read it. Although, this has happened several times before. I buy the kindle version of the book, then sits there and sits there collecting digital dust.
Here's a trick that worked for me. I moved all of the social media apps on my phone to a folder hidden on the back page of my phone. I moved the Kindle app front and center and started popping it open and reading a few pages when I otherwise would have popped open my RSS reader, Reddit, Hacker News, Facebook, or Instagram.
Then, I dug up my old Kindle reader and threw it in my car. I have dual USB car charger, so I grabbed a mini-USB cable and started plugging it in and storing it in the car full time. Now, when I am going out anywhere with a wait, or to a restaurant or bar where I normally knock out a lot of my reading (yeah, yeah, I am the guy that reads at the bar..only sometimes), I bring the Kindle along.
So far, it's working! I've read more pages from actual books than I have in years!
There is a really powerful commentary on social media making rounds recently. The rumblings go deeper than this one man and this one video. As an avid social media user, I think it's important to realize and understand this idea of “dopamine driven feedback loops” and both their power and their danger.
I might be breaking my own rule here by posting this, but my hope is that if you dig around a bit there's a positive message in here despite the negative subject matter.
“My solution” to the ideas brought up in this video—which I think many of us have felt without being able to articulate as well—is to post positivity.
When you share things on social media, you're putting energy out into the world that people are going to have a reaction to. I try to avoid airing grievances on Facebook. I try to avoid polarizing political and social commentary. I try to avoid sharing things that make me feel good at the expense of someone else.
Let's go back to the good ‘ole days when we shared cat pictures and smiling faces. Post positivity. Bring the Golden Rule back to social media.
Share things that will make others feel good. Make people laugh. Rekindle old connections. Share your vulnerabilities.
It's up to us, the power users, the influencers, the millennials that championed these platforms and digital lifestyles, to make a difference.
My new year's resolution is to share more, share positivity, and share deeper than just the picture-perfect moments. Life is full of peaks and valleys and only sharing at the top paints an unrealistic picture. I want to share the challenges and imperfections too. I want to use social media as a platform to help and improve other's lives as opposed to being a crutch for my insecurities and imperfections.
We'll see how that goes. Happy New Year and much love to all of you now, in 2018, and forever. 🙂 ❤️