Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

Lives Change When Virtual Meet Concrete

Filed under: Blogging — by at 2:09 pm on Thursday, February 11, 2010

In creating a buzz about SOBCon2010 – Business School for Bloggers, conference founders Liz Strauss and Terry Starbucker are holding the “Blog It, Earn It!” Discount. Essentially, “write a blog post about a person (or people) online who has (or have) made a difference in your life” and earn a 25% discount off of the registration fee, plus a chance to win a free ticket and airfare and hotel (up to $1105). Given how outrageously priced the hotel is, writing one blog post could be like winning the lottery!

My challenge is narrowing the list to one person or even a few people online who have made a difference in my life. Most people may not appreciate how much blogging has changed my life; how when I hit “publish” for the first time on June 1, 2005 my life changed forever. Blogging has given me a voice and a way to connect with people from around the world.

In those early days, Andy Wibbels’ “just start and then learn as you go” attitude got me blogging. I learned much from him. Watching and learning from my virtual sister Pam Slim also kept me going as a newbie blogger.

Since then, countless others online have kindly helped me in my blogging career; some teaching me valuable life lessons, like Liz teaching me how to graciously accept the words “You’re such an inspiration.” There’s also Becky McCray and her no-bs approach to business (she is definitely a rising star to watch!); social media chaplain Jon Swanson who gets me thinking deeper; Ricky Buchanan who has made me see accessibility from another position; Law of Attraction coach Suzie Cheel and her encouragement to think BIG; and many, many other. (Man, this feels like the Oscars and I’m forgetting important names! Please don’t feel slighted!)

ProBlogger book autographed by Chris Garrett and Darren RowseHowever, when I sat down to write this post, two names clearly rose to the forefront: Chris Garrett and Darren Rowse, authors of ProBlogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income. After having an employment counsellor tell me blogging was a passing fad, not an income source, I had goose bumps while reading Darren’s and Chris’s stories. They were proof that living off of blogging could be done. They are what I want to be when I become a grown up blogger! Finally here was something I could do to earn an income!

I shared in an earlier post:

With blogging as an income source, it erases all of the barriers I, a person with a physical disability, faced when searching for a job. With blogging, my typing speed and inability to answer phones – requirements for many jobs I applied for – don’t matter. With blogging, I don’t need to deal will transportation or the accessibility (lack thereof) of the workplace. I can work from the comforts of home, on my own schedule, doing what I love to do: writing and connecting with people from around the world. With blogging, technology has finally caught up to me and given me something else I can do, and with stories like Darren’s and Chris’s, I now have a goal to strive for.

Chris and Darren gave me a career goal that employment programs and counsellors could not. For that, I am appreciative and grateful.

What happens online and virtually definitely impact, change and improve the concrete, real-life world.

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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Launching the Exclusive Thumb-sized News Bytes

Filed under: Blogging — by at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Thumb-sized News Bytes newsletter cover

Believe it or not, not all of my news and happenings end up here on my blog!

For this reason, I’m launching Thumb-sized News Bytes – a brief, newsy email sent 1-2 times per month.

What’s in it for you?

An email packed full with:

  • links to my guest and paid posts on other blogs,
  • Glenda Around the Web – other bloggers who blog about me,
  • other short news bytes,
  • and more!

However, Thumb-sized News Bytes will only be sent to email subscribers!

Haven’t subscribed yet? It’s not too late! Sign up today. The first issue will go out as soon as I put it together.

(If you are reading this in your email, you’re set to receive this exclusive newsletter. The first issue will be arriving shortly.)

A special thanks to Cameron Engel for his assistance with the newsletter cover. Thanks Cam!

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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Top 10 Most Engaging Posts of 2009

Filed under: Blogging,Social Media — by at 1:30 pm on Tuesday, January 19, 2010

According to PostRank Analytics – a system for analyzing and scoring engagement events, social engagement refers to “the attention other people pay to your published content, like blog posts, news and articles. They see and read a post, and then because it’s interesting, inspiring, or controversial, they get “hooked” and decide to take further action.”

PostRank’s scoring system measures the “5 C’s” of engagement:

  • Creating: i.e. writing a blog post
  • Critiquing: i.e. leaving a blog comment
  • Chatting: i.e sharing and discussing information on Twitter
  • Collecting: i.e. submitting a post to Stumbleupon
  • Clicking:i.e. clicking a link to read a blog post

The more engagement an event requires (i.e. writing a blog post), the more engagement points the event receives. Bloggers can use their posts’ engagement scores as a measurement of how well their readers are reacting to and engaging with their content.

PostRank crunched the numbers to determine the most engaged readers in 2009. And the results are in…!

PostRank Top Blogs 2009 - #6 in Disability Thanks to you, my very engaged readers, Do It Myself Blog ranked #6 in the Disability category! Thank you!

The detailed analysis is available from PostRank. The top 10 engaging posts are:

  1. Da Wife on Wheels Dismissed Yet Again / August 29, 2009 – 406 engagement points
  2. 5 Reasons Why Bloggers and Web Designers Should Consider Accessibility / October 6, 2009 – 346 points
  3. Let’s Feed 100 People in Need Christmas Dinner, Again! / December 4, 2009 – 335 points
  4. WordPress Misses the #1 Accessibility Tip / September 28, 2009 – 325 points
  5. What Makes a Blog Theme Accessible? / August 6, 2009 – 274 points
  6. To the Employers Who Refused Me a Job, You Lose! / December 30, 2009 – 273 points
  7. Social Media Empowers Otherwise Silenced Voices / July 31, 2009 – 251 points
  8. How POUR is Your Blog / May 1, 2009 – 222 points
  9. Dreams Do Come True – With a Little Help from Friends / October 23, 2009 –164 points
  10. Are Multiple Themes Useful in Improving Blog Accessibility? / August 24, 2009 – 164 points

I’ve included the post dates to illustrate that the older posts (hence more time for engagement) are not necessarily ranked higher. These numbers also prove your comments, tweets, stumbles and the like do matter! Thank you.

I will continue creating, if you continue critiquing, chatting, collecting and clicking. Together, let’s see how engaged we can be in 2010!

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If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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How Blogging Increases My Confidence

Filed under: Blogging,Motivation — by at 12:12 am on Saturday, January 9, 2010

Blogging has unquestionably increased my confidence when interacting with people face-to-face; particularly when meeting people from the blogosphere.

A bold statement, I realize. And how can it be when blogging entails spending hour upon hour at computer, typically alone? I began thinking what confidence really means.

The Oxford Dictionary offers these definitions:

1 firm trust (have confidence in his ability). 2a a feeling of reliance or certainty b a sense of self-reliance; boldness.

But, in my mind, something was missing. That’s a dictionary definition, but what does confidence really mean, at least to me? Then it struck me in simplicity and clarity:

Confidence is a sense of familiarity.

Allow me to explain how I rationalized this myself and see if it makes sense to you too:

By sharing my experiences, opinions and ideas on my blog and by leaving comments on others’ blog, people get to know me beyond my cerebral palsy or even before the cerebral palsy. Likewise, I get to know them through their written words. Hence, when we have the opportunity to meet in-person, there’s familiarity. They already know there’s more to me than my difficult-to-understand speech and my jerky movements, and, for the most part, we can bypass the initial awkwardness and carry our online relationship into the real world. And, from that, I gain confidence in my ability to approach people.

That confidence has led me to do things that I may not have otherwise. For example, I had been wanting to have my dog-eared and sun-faded copy of ProBlogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income autographed by its two authors Chris Garrett and Darren Rowse – both top-notched and well-respected bloggers in the blogosphere. They are what I’ll like to be when I become a grown-up blogger.

ProBlogger book autographed by Chris Garrett and Darren RowseLast year, after giving my rockin’ presentation at SOBCon, Chris was still seated at his table without a crowd around him. Taking a deep breath, I wheeled over and handed him the book. He kindly obliged.

At BlogWorld, with my presentation following Chris’s and Darren’s panel, I thought I’d have the perfect opportunity to ask Darren for his autograph. Unfortunately, the crowd wanting to ask them questions was too large; I had to get up on stage and set up for my presentation. I missed my opportunity and disappointedly thought I might not another chance to meet up with the Aussie blogger.

Then, while waiting for the last keynote to begin, I spotted Darren sitting in the last row across the aisle from where I was. Now was my chance! Pulling out the book from overstuffed laptop bag and taking another deep breath, I wheeled over and tapped him on his shoulder. Not sure he knew me from blogger Eve, I was surprised he knew who I was and that he apologized for missing my presentation. He also kindly obliged.

Thank you, Chris and Darren. Without blogging, I doubt I would have had the confidence to approach two industry leaders.

What does confidence mean to you? What might you accomplish in 2010 if you had the confidence?

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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Streamline in 2009 I Did Not

Filed under: Blogging,Motivation,Social Media — by at 1:36 pm on Wednesday, December 16, 2009

For the past two years I have followed Christine Kane’s lead in choosing one word to guide me through the year. Focus was my word for 2008. What I discovered about finding focus was interesting and quite helpful.

Frustrated with needing to manage several lines of communications – emails, tweets Facebook comments and the like – my word for 2009 was streamline.

In 2009 I intended
To email, DM and PM
My people, peeps and tweeps
For wazoodles, widgets and gidgets
To follow, connect and friend
Friends, readers, robots too!

I did not find a way
I am sad to say
To mash together
Facebook, Linkedln, Flickr,
YouTube, Viddler, and Twitter.

I did not find a way
To be the best connector,
Inter-actor and communicator
With one left thumb.

“The reason?” you ask.
I was too busy
Emailing, tweeting, commenting,
Following, too,
To find a better way.
Streamline in 2009, I did not.

But, all is not lost.
There’s still hope
For a new year begins soon
And I’m giving myself a redo!

A do-over to try again
To mash together
All these messages,
To be the best connector,
Inter-actor and communicator
With one left thumb.

Will you help me
Streamline in 2010?
Would you leave your
Thoughts, ideas and tips
On wazoodles, widgets and gidgets
To follow, connect and friend
Friends, readers, robots too,
In the comment box below, please?
I thank you,
My friends, my readers,
My followers, too!

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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