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2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,600 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 9 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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What is your Avatar?

Information convergence and delivery in today’s world has virtually erased any demarcation there exists between your personal and professional life. There is a lot of buzz about Social Media and all its uses and misuses for the past few years. Social Media is essentially your Facebook, MySpace et al. I would like to add another category that is spreading like a virus that I would prefer to call the ‘Professional Media”. This is basically the LinkedIns of the world. I have been getting all sorts of spam from other websites to register myself in their directory so people can find me. I firmly believe that, if someone wants to find somebody on the cyber world it is just a matter of few keystrokes and clicks.

Anyway, my reason for this post is something I have been thinking and trying to do. I think it is an impossible task, but here is what I want to achieve: “Keep my personal and professional footprints on the web separate”. For this reason, I have been exploring the options of having two accounts for everything. I think it is a stupid idea but I want to try it anyway. Let me explain my rationale.

I have a Blog (this one), Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, email accounts to name a few. This is basically my “Cyber Footprint”. I am not adding all the forums, groups and communities I participate and contribute to. I guess that can also be accounted for as part of my footprint, but may not need two accounts (User ID and Password).

Blogging: When I blog, I want to keep my personal and professional posts separate. I do not want my friends reading all my professional stuff and vice-versa. So, should I have two blogs?

Facebook: It has become a 24×7 workforce worldwide. If you are able to keep manage your work-life balance, you are a genius. Most of my “Active” friends are my colleagues. So, do I Friend all of them? Should I have two accounts? Should there be multi layered access to the information I post on my Facebook?

Twitter: I follow and am being followed by both my personal and professional relatives (how is that?), not just individuals, but also groups. I do not want my personal friends to read all my professional mumbo-jumbo and also, I do not want a colleague of mine read my tweet about what I am eating for breakfast or cooking for dinner. My solution is to keep two accounts.

I guess we all need to figure out what our Avatar is going to be before I put my foot forward in the cyber world and add on to my existing footprint.

Find A Job onTwitter…Are you kidding me?

I was surprised to read this. But you should check it out.  Twitter is being used not only to find a Job but also for recruiting. You would be amazed at the information provided in this Mashable article titled “HOW TO: Find a Job on Twitter“. Read on folks!!!

Temples of Knowledge

I have been fascinated by books my entire life. More so about the ones that document the stories of places, people and their culture.  That’s one reason my favorite subject during my school was always ‘Social Studies’. I loved History and Geography but not Civic Sciences. I always hated the governance and political aspects of societies. I liked them only to the extent that there should be some kind of law to punish unruly behaviour and to the extent that there should be some one to take care of all the infrastructure and the money that is paid by it’s people. The governments these days are not good at either of these. 

The best thing I like about libraries is how organized they are. Staff meticulously cataloging all arranging the tomes in long, tall shelves. Another thing I love is the smell of print. The first thing I do, as soon as I open the book is to smell it. It kind of excites my senses, I guess and makes me want it more. I think that’s one way I could get myself to read more books or at the least that would keep me going back to the Library. It’s like the smell of dust rising from the ground when the first drops of monsoon hit the dry, parched ground. I used to long for that smell a lot when I was in India.

I call libraries the “Temples of Knowledge”. Religion played a very important role in shaping up the mankind. In fact, I think that has been the biggest force that has shaped the world the way it is today. We all realize how it is still influencing the way we and our future generations live. In Hinduism, temples and priests are the way the knowledge has been passed down from generations to generations.  Hence, I call the libraries, ‘Temples of Knowledge’.

The authors are like the priests, waiting to pass on the knowledge to you. Even though there is only one ‘Truth’. Each priest, will influence the truth his own way and present it to you. He sees the truth through his eyes, filters it through his brain.  His brain is unique. It has been shaped up by many more priests. The trickiest part is reproducing the truth. This is where the training that your brain has received comes into picture. This is why I think one has to read all kinds of books. Train the brain, to reproduce the truth. In it’s own way of course. The more training the brain has, the better equipped  it will be to reproduce the truth. 

Anyway, I have been trying to visit my priests for a few weeks now and I should say, I have been fairly successful.  I have found a perfect ‘Temple’ to pursue this passion. I live in Cary,NC and fortunately very close to an excellent facility called ‘West Regional Library’, part of Wake County Library System. We started going there to fulfill my daughters never ending requests for ‘Dora – The Explorer’ books. I have started exploring myself now. Hope you all will find and make time to read. Be it a Temple like the one I talked about or the virtual temple that is omnipresent, The Internet.

Happy Reading!!!

Transition in Today’s Economy

Economic slowdown and layoffs:

This is the worst economic slowdown that the world has seen in the past 50 years.  The forecasts and predictions are all gloomy every where.  Guess how many people got laid off so far in the Top 500 American Public companies since November 01 2008?  As per Forbes magazine’s “Layoff Tracker“, it is exactly 480,674 as of February 19, 2009. I do not want to scare the @#$! out of you, but this is really depressing. The usage of the “D” word is increasing every day. I was not born to see the Great D. But, this probably and hopefully the only Great D that I would see in my life time.

NC PMI Session:

I have posted about a NC PMI session where a gentleman named Doug Johnson did a session on transitioning in today’s economy.  He was an amazing speaker and had a good sense of humor. For the first time in my life,  I have seen a lady choked up and teary eyed in a professional session like this, when she was explaining her layoff story and how her 4 and 6 year old kids tried to help her  by selling their toys to friends at school and bring that money back to her. It was a very touching moment.

Six Phases of Grief:

Experts and studies say that people go through the following phases during grief. I think getting laid off is one such situation.

  1. Shock
  2. Denial and/or Bargaining
  3. Guilt
  4. Anger
  5. Depression
  6. Acceptance and Determination

Believe in yourself and bounce back:

One thing you should realize is the fact that “It’s not you who is responsible for what just happened”. There are a thousand different things and a thousands of other people who caused this. Also, the fact that you have been employed until a few minutes is a testimonial to your ability, skill and hard work. The last thing that you want to do is blame yourself or lose your self confidence. 

Here’s a list of things that experts recommend you should do to get out of the setback, get up on your feet again and get going.

  • Let your emotions out
  • Share your grief with your loved ones, Spouse, Kids (yes kids, they’ll understand)
  • Assess your financial situation
  • Plan and prepare for medium to long-term, for life without a job
  • Keep faith in yourself and plan the next steps. Prepare your resume, network with people, call that old friend of your whom you always wanted to but never did for a long time
  • Do all the things that you always wanted to do, while you were busy burning out in your job, but never did. 
  • Do not lose focus and get discouraged, keep trying

More Help:

Mr. Ben Parr, has written an article on Mashable about 30+ Websites to Visit When Youre Laid Off. He has given a step by step approach with a list of 30 websites that can help. Wall Street Journal has another article in it’s February 03 2008 issue, titled “Coping With Aftermath of Layoffs at your Firm“.

I hope none of you get into this situation. But, when you do, you can always get back on track. It’s just a matter of time.

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