The Sun Magazine

The Sun: Thought-Provoking-my gift to you!

Two years ago at Christmas I received a subscription to The Sun magazine (https://thesunmagazine.org/). (And I have one to give to you – keep reading!)

And I was confounded. Neither my friend who sent it nor I have a religion affiliation unless you call sunrise hikes, evening kayaking or nighttime star-gazing a religion. Which we do, actually. Even still, it took me by surprise to receive such a gift. Until I read The Sun.

The Sun’s byline is “Personal. Political. Provocative. Ad-Free.”

I would also add “Spiritual. Non-Religious.”

Oh my.

This monthly magazine became my morning reading material. I savored it and made it last. The interviews are in-depth and teach me something new every month. The essays, memoirs and true stories keep me reading until the end and when I finish, I often let out a huge sigh. There is usually a fiction story, poetry and best of all (at least for me) is Readers Write. One topic is given and thousands of people submit their version of the topic. About 20 first-person stories are chosen and it’s like a roller-coaster of reading.

life steps quoteSo, for Christmas last year, I sent a subscription (at only $25 per year per subscription if it’s a gift) to four people who I thought would also appreciate the magazine. I often hear back from them and we discuss the articles. My favorite thing to do is to give away my older issues as a way to ‘sell’ my friends on the magazine. It works every time. Like me, they think it’s a religious magazine – once they read it, they learn quickly that it’s totally NOT and totally so many other things. And always thought-provoking.

The Sun Magazine takes me to places…step by step. Sometimes I take them two by two but most times, I take them very slowly – savoring them as I go.

I have a few magazines sitting on my table, staring me in the face, hoping and wishing that I can share them with you. Send me an email and I’ll send a magazine your way. They are a treat in every way possible. And no advertisements! It will be my gift to you! Please take me up on the offer, you will be so glad you did!

I’m waiting to hear from you. The first 5 people will be so happy they wrote to me at
happilyafterretirement@gmail.com  and I will be so blessed to share them with you!
(OK, what are the chances that 5 people will contact me?) DO IT!

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Resources:

Sometimes Facebook Makes Me Crazy

I don’t spend much time on Facebook like I did. I go there every few weeks and look at new family photos and then exit the program. There was a time I posted photos and made comments and ‘Liked’ but not anymore.

First off, it took me a bit of time to understand but after I read the posts from family and friends I got sad. Their lives were so full, so rich, so purposeful. They had anniversary photos, new jobs, they had ‘relationship status’ updates from “single” to “in a relationship” and then “married.” Their kids were top-achievers, getting into great colleges, finding employment and getting married. The married children were in contact with their parents, took photos with their children and life was rosy and sweet.


Their holidays were joyful and the only thing missing was Norman Rockwell. Photos of their vacations could have been ripped from travel guides. The more I read, the sadder I became. It’s not that I was envious of my Facebook family, it’s more like I was left behind in the gray room with all the gray colors and gray food. My life — which is pretty full and fantastic, felt sort of …lacking.

It took a bit of detective work  but the pieces fell together and the truth unfolded. There were fights, bankruptcies, illnesses, divorces, job losses and failing students standing there when the camera was put away. This bit of reality didn’t ease my sadness; it just made me realize how childish it all is.

It’s childish for me to compare my standing with someone’s posting on Facebook. kayak2It’s stupid to wish for another life when I have no idea if that person is truly happy or perhaps cries herself to sleep at night. I know where I stand. I know what I’ve achieved and what it took to get me there. I know there are things I want that I haven’t achieved and sometimes I wish I could have a ‘do-over’ but this is where I am – right here and now.

Every now and then I’ll check Facebook to see who’s doing what … and everything I read I’ll take with a grain of salt. No sadness, no comparison, no wishing I had someone else’s good fortune. I know better now.

Have you ever tried to Google yourself?

duckduckgo.comThis is my deal – there is so much to learn, so much to know, so much to share that when I find some tidbit, I just want to write about it so you can benefit from my words. One may call me a teacher, a trainer, an educator and yes –  I am all of the above because I just assume you want to learn too.

When was the last time you searched your name on the internet or ‘Googled’ yourself? I suggest you go to google.com and enter your name and see what comes up. Now try it in yahoo.com and duckduckgo.com. You might find unique links or information from each site.

Is the information that comes up accurate? If not, can you track down the website and get it changed? As you move towards anything in this connected world, you can bet your name will be searched. Want to buy a house, sell a house, rent an office, get a job, buy an appliance, or anything else –  if so, you can bet your name will be checked online.

Potential employers might find you on LinkedIn and learn all about your past jobs, read your recommendations and possibly even contact past colleagues. And they won’t stop at LinkedIn, they will certainly look for you on Facebook. Here they will see the other side of you – the family, funny, wacky side. Or they will see the stupid, drunken and sullen side of you that writes with a sarcastic tone or other such negative image.

Did you sign up for Classmates, Meetup, Youtube, Google Photos, Calorie-Count, Flickr, Pintrest, or other social/gaming networking sites?  If so, your name will probably show up in quite a few search results. Do you have a blog, website, or have you posted articles or photos? Let’s hope they are clean, informative and inspiring to someone who is looking to hire you, date you, enroll you or any other possible scenarios.

We are connected – like it or not. We are ‘out there’ for the good people to find us knowing that bad people will find us too. Take a moment and go to duckduckgo.com and see what you can find on your name. Maybe nothing at all. Maybe lots. Maybe it’s all ok.

Related:

 

Using your cell phone to take photos?

GPS receivers from Trimble, Garmin und Leica
Wikipedia

I love to take photos but was unaware of the risk involved when you take photos with your cell phone and post them online (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) Unless you go into the GPS settings and turn off the tracking option, the location of the photo you just took is visible to the public.

Take a look at these videos that sum up the risks and offer solutions to the problem.

postaday2011

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The Seedy Side of Facebook

Facebook logo
Image via Wikipedia

These are the things I love about Facebook.

I’m in touch with my family members, can see their photos and follow what they’re up to. Birthdays, parties, proms, vacations, awards, successes and lots of other family related stuff.

After viewing this video, my happy fuzzy feeling about Facebook fizzled away.



Your Facebook Privacy

Not to freak you out — but this is kind of pervasive. More to follow, ok?

Social Marketing Strategy #3: Getting Social

Do you use the internet much? If you do, then Social Media Networking is another way to interact with clients, businesses, friends and consumers using the internet. Using social media networks, like LinkedIn and Facebook allows you to engage your customers in a conversation and listen to what they have to say about your business.

You can meet new people, make friends, announce upcoming events, link to other businesses and build relationships with existing and potential customers.

Two popular networks are LinkedIn and Facebook.

LinkedIn (Linkedin.com) is a business oriented social networking site.  On this site, you can connect with past and current colleagues and classmates. You can learn about job openings, discover who you’re connected to and learn from industry experts who have information to share.

Facebook is a social networking website where you connect with family members, friends and friends of friends. It’s full of photos, comments, videos and fun interaction. Facebook also has a community page created for a specific organization or event.  You can view the Mead Area Chamber of Commerce Facebook page after you log into your Facebook account.

When others enter the name of YOUR business into Google Search, what do they find?  They want to see what you have to say, what you offer, what’s new and different. What will they find when they search? What will they find when they search your competitor?

Get online and get noticed using social media networking.

Stay tuned for Social Marketing Strategy #4: What to Write?

Need more information or help? Look for a Social Media Strategy Workshop this fall!

mkmercurio.wordpress.com

Simple Steps on Getting Noticed

A Special Touch:

Last month, I was the recipient of a book titled, Home Safe by Elizabeth Berg. The book was sent to me by Random House (for free) along with 2 bags of Dove chocolates (dark and milk chocolate!). In the package was a letter telling me to enjoy the book and the chocolates. I was so impressed with the book and chocolate I think I’ve told over a dozen people. Random House has sent me books in the past which I’ve read and passed on but this was a really special.

Share and Share Alike:

In cliffnotebooks.com, the author shares her cliff notes on Crush It by Gary Vaynerchuk In addition to her thoughts, she includes a video interview with Gary and Scobelizer discussing social media. Gary offers great information about business, social media, expectations, work ethics and how he made them all work for him.

One Stop Viewing:

I found a site called TubeMogul, it’s like a clearinghouse with statistics tracking all those who view your material. It’s free and organized in a way that will help you remember where you’ve posted, what your passwords are and who’s been looking at your stuff.

Connecting with social networks as a way to learn, listen and grow is an ongoing lesson. Deciding to focus on Facebook or LinkedIn, spend time on Twitter or a little bit of each depends on your audience. The best way to get attention is to mix and match the tools you use and Be Present!

Put Your Fingers on the Keyboard:

The time is now to create a blog, or sign up on a social network site, check into existing videos on YouTube and Flickr and start reading. You’ll soon find a site that you enjoy reading and want to bookmark. When that happens, be sure to click the links on that page as well. And when people write in, follow their links. That’s where the networking begins. Pose a question and you’ll be amazed at the help you’ll get … just be sure to listen and respond!