Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Story of How I Started Blogging

Last week I attended the 2009 WorkLife Congress in NYC.

The purpose of such an event is to discuss and celebrate all the wonderful ways some companies help their employees feel a greater sense of work/life balance. This makes workers feel better about those organizations, resulting in increased retention and other positive outcomes. What might be viewed as "warmth and fluff" actually translates into measurable financial success.

As a confession, I admit that attending conferences always reminds me of things I don't miss from my old carnival days. Standing around at a booth for hours and hours until your feet are bloody stumps for example. Exhibitors desperate for even an ounce of relief actually pay extra for a half inch of padding on cruel concrete floors. I'm sorry but trade show flooring is as much "carpet" as the paper-like material used to make kids Halloween costumes is "fabric."

Luckily this event attracts a crowd of people which somewhat offsets the usual physical torture.

Not to knock the olden days of working with folks passionate about IT Asset Management and Enterprise Architecture. It's just really refreshing and fun to be around people (instead) who spend their whole day thinking about how to make others feel a greater sense of happiness and life balance.  The walls of the WorkLife Congress radiate with "people person" energy.

The epitome of this energy is Carol Evans, founder of Working Mother Media. Carol has her own category of über passion which resounds with equal intensity whether she is on the big stage or interacting one-to-one.

Here's a little story....

Exactly a year ago, I was at this same conference talking life balance strategy with the other attendees.  I was in my element and having a whale of a time (not to mention eating like a whale.)  Upon learning about Personal Strategic Management and my love of writing, several people advised me, "You should talk to my friend Carol. She will help you." 

Over and over, the message was given to me that I had to meet this Carol person.  Everyone's friend and apparently someone who could give me some well-respected and sage advice.

I followed the yellow bridge road and connected the dots.  "My friend Carol" was indeed THE Carol Evans. On the last evening of the 2008 conference I had the opportunity to speak with her.  Carol was so warm and welcoming; in one instant I actually felt as though she was my friend too. 

Feeling comfortable and confident, I quickly explained my passion for helping people with life balance as well as my childhood dream of being a writer. 

She gave me a huge hug. Then still holding me at arms length, she secured my gaze as if she was about to share the secret to world peace. With her usual enthusiastic tone Carol said, "Do it!  Start writing!" 

Yeesh. Why didn't I think of that? 

I'm not being sarcastic.  Seriously. Why didn't I?

Carol then more specifically suggested blogging as a way to start my writing journey. 

I checked out the Mom Blogs on the Working Mother website and made a timid, unsuccessful attempt to win a spot.

Long story well, longer.... it took following my sister's blog and others for another few months before I finally created The Balance Beam.  Carol's words rang in my ears as I discovered how crazy easy it was to just "do it."

When I saw Carol Evans last week, it was so gratifying to be able to thank her.   In one encounter ala Wizard of Oz, my friend Carol inspired me to create what has been the perfect outlet for me.

Of course, I thank YOU for reading, following and commenting as well. 

It's really fun writing for the sake of writing, but I'd be lying if I said it isn't more fun seeing my words resonate with you. 

The real moral of the story is this:
         If there is something you've just always wanted to do... well, DO it!   Every journey begins with one step. Go for it. Take a step.  Today.

Your friend,

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12 comments:

Tina said...

That's inspiring, Charlene. It's amazing how the simple things get all cluttered up and seem so complicated. I'm only new but I'm glad to have made the start.
Tina

Sarah said...

yes, it is easy. however, most of us, i suspect, are just terrified of the thought of it. what if i fail? how humiliating would that be? what if it isn't as great as i thought it would be? what if..what if..i have been germinating an idea that requires me to go out and promote myself. how terrifying will THAT be?!

Gregory said...

I for one am glad you took her advise and "did it"
my beginnings are not so inspiring as I began blogging as a step in saving my sanity, for real.
Maybe I'll share that story someday :)

Bruce Coltin said...

You're a good person. I like that in you.

Caroline Bender said...

It is hard to succeed at blogging (in that get famous, make money, get invited to other people's conferences way) but it is also hard to fail at it. If you don't like it, if it doesn't fill the space you were trying to fill, or use the energy you were trying to use, then you don't have to continue. But if for a year, you can try expressing yourself to an unknown audience, and emotionally (as a reader) support others who do, you'll find that audience within that year, and you won't want to stop.
My name is "Caroline," and I am a Blogger. (Hiii.... Caroliiine...)

Charlene said...

Congrats Tina - keep going!!

Sarah - I think you hit the nail on the head. Fear of failure can sometimes keep us from trying. But then we need to ask ourselves, "What's the worst that can happen?"

Thanks for the kind words Bruce & Gregory!

Wise words Caroline... and of course (as noted by a link within the post) you were also a great inspiration for me. Thanks! :-)

Lua said...

that is so great & it looks like you have quite a following! i am a new blogger and still trying to find my "thing" but i am going to stick to it!

thanks!
(following from MBC)

Karen said...

You are SO right!

Just this week I was thinking about how I wish I could travel more. And then I said to myself, "I CAN travel more." I started looking for jobs that require travel. Haven't found anything that's the right fit yet, but at least I've decided to go for it and find something.

Thank you so much for stopping by on my SITS day! You've got a really cool blog!

kys said...

Thanks for the encouragement. I think we all could use a little!

Tough Cookie Mommy said...

You have been chosen to receive a blogging award! Check it out...
http://toughcookiemommy.blogspot.com/

Innocent Owner Of Mad Cats said...

I for one am glad you started the Beaming Balance. I find it very inspirational and motivating.

The Redhead Riter said...

Stopping by from SITS. Cute blog

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