Twitter Tales

For her blogaversary Conversation Agent, Valeria Maltoni, asked her readers to submit their Twitter Tales.  She asked us to “write a short post describing how a connection you made on Twitter, first, lead you to an opportunity and opened new horizons”.   While I have many, many Twitter tales of deep and lasting friendships and professional relationships that have developed from chance meetings on Twitter.  There are a few that stand out as examples of how small and connected our world truly has become and how wide we make it when we reach out to those we encounter on Twitter.

Here is a link to my Twitter Tale…..

http://redstaplerconsulting.net/2009/09/14/twitter-tales/

I’d love to hear yours!

Community & the Quality of Our Relationships

This is a reprint of a post I wrote in June 2008, but I feel that the message is especially relevant for me and a lot of others right now.  So here it is again.

Sometimes things come to us in such a timely manner, that it restores our faith in the patterns of the universe.  After having ignored my GoogleReader for several days (way too many, don’t even ask how long!)  I started to wade through through the massive amount of reading I had in front of me.   As usual, when I have built it up to that lovely 1000+  (you have to love when it is so many that they will intimidate you with 1000+ and not really tell you how many there are!) that GR intimindatingly shows me I have failed to keep up on, I’m skimming subjects and titles.  In my haste to clear, I almost skipped over this particular post, but something drew me back.  Not only because it was Gary V, but something about the title resonated with some of my recent musings.

http://garyvaynerchuk.com/2008/06/05/when-do-you-know-you-have-a-community/

Gary talks about when you know you have a Community (yes capital “C”).   Now, I’m not sure that I can ever be as eloquent as Gary, but I’d like to think I share his passion.  His focus is on the social media crowd, but I think his message can be expanded to many aspects of our lives.  He reminds us all that community = communication!  If you are having a dialogue with just one person, you have a Community.

Gary’s words reinforced things that have been occurring to me lately.  I’m in the process of making a Major move and Major changes in my life.  In preparing to make these changes, I have been evaluating the roles that various people play in my life. When Gary talks about needing to remember that it does not matter how many Twitter followers or blog readers, it made me remember that it does not matter how many friends I have collected, how many colleagues admire me, how many business associates I have contacts with.  It is about the quality of these relationships. Now, I will admit that sometimes I get lost in believing that the more people I am able to surround myself with, the more people there are to make me happy, to reinforce the positives about myself, in general just to affirm my existence.    Occasionally it is nice to be reminded that I don’t need anyone to affirm me.   What I need is myself and the positive power of a good Community.   And Gary has reminded me of that. He has reminded me that I not only need myself, I need good dialogue with a single person and I have a solid Community.

I’m one of the lucky ones, I’ve realized that I have a lot of people in my Community, good people, solid people, smart people, caring and inspiring people.  From the people I love, my family, my close friends, some business associates, my Twitter  peeps and the sweet people who take the time to read this, I’m blessed with this Community.

One of the reasons Twitter has become such a huge part of my life

This is a great post from Laura Fitton at Pistachio Consulting, Inc.  I am privileged to have her as part of my Twitter "village".

Twitter is my Village

Posted by Laura Fitton under Twitter , social media
 

Village?
For me, connecting on Twitter with someone I’ve just met in person is inviting them to live in “my village.” Follow-up won’t be limited to the “nice meeting you” email cul-de-sac. On Twitter, we’ll cross paths incidentally and without pressure. I may bump into them “around town” for maybe a word or two at the “coffee shop” or “post office.” Over time we may discover common interests (aka social objects) in each others’ tweets, and connect more deeply as neighbors or friends.

For a contrived, weird and techy way to communicate, Twitter’s “passive conversation” fosters very natural, gradual relationship-building. I explained about the village to Dan Bricklin, who immediately connected it to the chapter on “taming” and the Fox in The Little Prince.

The Village Mind
New to Twitter, it makes no sense. Post 140 characters into the ether? Stare at the public timeline’s chaos washing over me? Why the h…?

How does Twitter shift from idiotic to amazing? It takes a village – a critical mass of interesting people – to read and write to. When my brain started to connect with the brains (and hearts) of others, it got really, REALLY cool for me. You may be looking for like minds, or you may want to be totally shaken up by new ideas. Both work. One day I suddenly realized this was, for me, tribe-finding. For arguably the first time in my life I didn’t feel as weird and different.

Everyone connects to a different array of tweets and tweeters, so there aren’t discrete villages per se. But, the degrees of separation and connection create layers around each individual that hint at a very sketchy (and Twitter-specific) “social map.” (Often highly removed from who you actually know).

The Village Heart
Right in “my” own village (yours too?) @susanreynolds‘ breast cancer fight and the Frozen Pea Fund bubbled up as a lovely grassroots social movement to rally around and raise support for one of our own. (If you missed it, the story is in today’s Washington Post.) With Twitter though, the “village” feel of intimacy is profoundly global. Her story’s been blogged hundreds of times including Scoble, Loic, TechCrunch and even a link on the BBC home page.

This week in a nearby village, a car crash stole well-loved young mother. Ashley D. Spencer left behind baby Lucy (2 months old), toddler “Sproglet” and her loving husband. She’d shared her pregnancy on Twitter as @ashpreggo, switched to @AshDMama after baby Lucy’s birth and is the only person I know of who permanently added PEA to her Twitter ID in honor of @susanreynolds. She died, tragically, and FAR too young, as @AshPEAMama. Ashley once sent me this hearty laughter on a very dark day. In her village, her humor and caring touched many lives deeply.

And so our eccentric archipelago of Twitter villages is mourning, and struggling to try to help Ashley’s family. @Mosqueda set up this memorial fund to help with funeral expenses and childcare.

If you’re not on Twitter yet, I don’t blame you if all this seems unrealistic or hyped. But lives and communities are changing, profoundly, over here in this funky little Twecosystem the guys from Obvious built. You might want take a look sometime. I’ll probably see you in the coffee shop.

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