Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Viral Networking and the Anti-Social

We are at the networking age where conversations no longer need to take place in person. We no longer need to face a person, but tend to do more of our conversing over messaging. Does this new technical age somehow make us socially retarded? For me, I have noticed that the more and more I perfect my social networking skills, the more I tend to forget the fundamentals of simple conversational etiquette.

Social networking sites that tend to suck us into random chat sessions that last too long are ones like Facebook and Twitter. When I first began using Twitter, I really did not know what I was doing or how to use it. But, when properly used one could carefully communicate effective messages that lead into marketing strategies for any type of entrepreneur. However, one that is not used by the younger Facebook generation is LinkedIn. LinkedIn is actually one of the most respected networking sites, in my personal opinion. Because, you must know contacts and gaining contacts are not as easy to do as it is on Twitter and Facebook. But having real business contacts is worth the hassle of the slow building process that it takes to gain a network base on LinkedIn.

Also, LinkedIn is a business profile and resume page for your future employers and people that would like to see a professional snapshot of you. While keeping up with these tools are great. Here are 10 things you can teach yourself how to become more emotionally intelligent and socially conscious. I try and practice these mantras daily, especially during stressful moments in life, such as Graduate boot camp at Newhouse.

1. Try not to live in your head, catch yourself when you find yourself wandering from the moment and try to stay present.

2. Be mindful when others are talking and catch yourself if you interrupt- practice active listening.

3. Learn to mingle with everyone and realize that relationships develop naturally. But, if two people do not fit together due to personality clashes, that is okay too.

4. Never allow yourself to get too sucked into networking where it suddenly takes the place of real friends and real human interaction.

5. Learn to not take things too personally and see yourself as valuable, even if others may not see it. You need to see it in yourself and that is the most important thing.

6. Practice moderation with all that you do. Begin with small things and suddenly, you’ll find that the big things aren’t so big at all. You may find more balance in your life this way.

7. When you are faced with a personality that really rubs you the wrong way, ask yourself why and find a way to make peace with who they are and then let the conflict go.

8. Remember all of the times you didn’t feel so acquired. Recall a time in your life where you felt confident, smooth, alive, and sure of yourself and your future. Then, practice placing yourself back in that emotional state, especially during moments where you feel unsure about things.

9. Never allow people or events in your life to effect you so much that it ruins your chances of success. Be the winner and succeed by not giving in to negative distractions. This means, that if you have to block it all out- do so and focus on your own journey.

10. Always try to eat right and get enough rest. You’ll find that when you don’t sleep that much, your tendency to say the wrong things are that much easier.

These are things I am still trying to master and will hopefully become better at over this next year. Because, networking is key and the ability to understand various personalities different than our own can make current or future projects easier to work on and allow for a more socially mature self.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Media, Technology and A.D.D.

If we look back 10 years ago, we’ll recognize that attention deficit used to be primarily an adolescent disorder. This disorder focused primarily on children as young as 5 years old, to those in their late teens. Yet, it was mostly parents with elementary school kids that reported to have the most problems.

Ritalin used to be the drug that was pumped into kids, now this medication has evolved into newer psychotropic medication such as Concerta, Dexadrine, Desoxyn, Vyvanse and more not listed here. Today, attention deficit disorder is on the rise with a whopping 4.4 million children ranging in ages from 4 to 17 have A.D.D. and at least 4 percent of adults now struggle with attention deficit. 

With such high percentages of those suffering from the illness that distracts so many children and adults, one must ask if perhaps this lack of focus stems from more than a chemical imbalance. Living in this technological age where the media is blamed for sensationalizing the news into soap-opera reality-tv; new methods of marketing media, connecting via social networking, and watching films can all be done via our smart phones.

The internet explosion and constant evolution of technology allows our mobile phones, laptops, and computers to be a virtual explorative world at our fingertips.  Today, we can check our e-mails, facebook account, twitter a message, write a short blog, log in to our bank accounts, and surf the internet all from our phones. Beyond simple texting and making a phone call- our phones are mini-laptops able to do just about anything. No wonder, we cannot stay focused? Distraction and cell phones has gotten so bad, that new laws had to make it illegal to call or text anyone while driving because people have actually gotten killed by a driver texting or making a phone call.

Technology has been the driving force to new media forming into an ambiguous amalgamation of computer technology, internet, and web-based video distribution. In the past only those with a hefty amount of money could distribute films and videos. The cost of making films, color correcting, and flat bed editing- was expensive. Now in the new digital age, almost anyone can purchase a digital camera which most come in High Definition and shoot films. Most people equally have their own computers and access to editing software. The rise of filmmakers using DSLR camera’s has become an even more cost effective approach to making films. The quality of filmmaking, media and marketing distribution has become so compact, that the ability to view media is accessible through almost any smart phone or laptop.

10 years ago, we used to value real human contact. We used to really pay attention to what people say and listen intently. Today, it is near to impossible to have a conversation with a fellow human, distracted by the technological world engulfing them. While technology has made it so that we connect to more people, communicate, market ourselves, distribute our own videos, publish our own articles via blogs or websites. Technology has made newspapers obsolete and the news streaming live through the web faster than some television stations can air it. Today, the rise of reality television has influenced how we present news to an audience who are used to sensationalism. In this technological world of wonderful opportunities for growth, and new entrepreneurs, we ought to embrace new ways we deliver and create media with moderation and balance.