What’s Happening With @Soulati?

Jon-Buscall.jpgHas anyone missed me? I know a few have and thanks for the well wishes. But, guess what? I’ve not been sick; thank my fortunate stars.

Where I have been is under a rock in the dark trying to muddle through an intense time at my blogging house and for my brand. It’s what every company must experience. You can call it transformation, and it’s a journey that takes awhile…a long while, with lots of introspection and grappling with the demons of the past that form you into today’s persona.
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As a result of this experience, my blog has been basically dark since prior to January. I can’t say I’ve missed worrying about what to write on a near-daily basis, but I’m feeling the absence of expressing myself and communing with you, too.

Today, I can honestly say, I see the light. It’s just around the bend, but
having brand new digs is making the light waves brighter.

I need to give my second child (to be born in my next life) to one astonishing businessman, friend, colleague, and partner by name of Dr. Jon Buscall of Jontus Media. Jon is the consummate digital marketer, a brutal editor, and a whiz at website design. His team, anchored by an adorable man named Juanjo, made my new website and me simply gorgeous.

Hire Jon Buscall of Jontus Media

Please hire Jon Buscall for ALL your digital marketing needs and to assess your future journey with digital. Better yet, hit this landing page and schedule a free Marketing Intensive with him!

Essentially, long story short, the lights are back on.

  • I have a new website — it’s all mobile, responsive and built for conversions.
  • I am doing digital marketing the right way because I hired Jon Buscall.
  • I have a project manager on my team who is also the consummate writer and knows my fears and challenges about failure in Jenn Whinnem. Tweet Jenn @TheJenn, but don’t hire her, she’s mine.
  • I give a mega shout out to Cathy Tetrick for spending a Saturday as my photographer.
  • I have a new auto-responder series I wrote all by myself, and you can sign up for it via my blog page right here in the sidebar. (That was an astonishing feat, mind you!)
  • I am building my email list because the experts said I have to; so, if you don’t mind, sign up and see how it’s done!

I’m so happy in my new house that just launched not even 24 hours ago!!

Find any kinks? Please do share. It’s always great to have fresh eyes on a labor of love. And speaking of love, I have missed you and love you to pieces.

In gratitude…

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The Happy Friday Series: She Loves to Heal

Michelle-Quillin.jpgWhen a woman the likes of Michelle Quillin gets on your good side, and she’s never on anyone’s bad, you have the privilege of a friend for life, a supporter extraordinaire, and the most loving individual you’ve never met.

It’s a good thing we now can all G+ Hangout, for it took me about three years to “meet” Michelle in sorta IRL. She’s worth the wait.

Michelle is the better half of New England Multimedia, the WordPress design and development firm in Rhode Island. Back in the earliest days of our ‘raderie, she was part of the SMB Collective with Neicole Crepeau, Jon Buscall, Jenn Whinnem, and me. We blogged together in 2010 for awhile, and it’s been nothing but a building relationship ever since.

Michelle is one of those people who makes instant friends with most everyone. On Facebook she has a scourge of admirers from foreign lands who insist on getting to know her…LOL…I’m not supposed to share that with her husband, Scott!

What always impressed me about Michelle is her command of Facebook community building. In the earliest days, she took to the channel like a fish to water and had oodles of likes and comments on her posts. She asked questions, and got people to reply; she posted surveys and earned responses…she knows her Facebook!

In her real other life, Michelle is a youth minister guiding troubled youths through troubled times. Yet, she serves over and above and home schools teens (not hers) who need attention. She has played nanny to infants and toddlers whilst the teen mother attended school. Michelle keeps this side of her life private to the extent she can; however, a woman so devoted to nurturing, giving and caring needs to also be recognized in some small way. She is an angel and messenger who loves and lives to heal.

She has always been part of this community, and she wrote a piece for The Happy Friday Series, too. I thank you, Michelle, for always contributing, being there and here. My warmest best.

 

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The Happy Friday Series: Being Happily Half Empty

Jenn-Whinnem.jpgYou meet the most remarkable and provocative people online. When you engage a tad deeper and peel back the layers, you see the seedling sprouting into the fruit of the earth. That’s Jenn Whinnem.

When she wrote this Happy Friday Series, Glass Half Empty and Happy in February 2013, she knew it very well could be regarded as different with a bit of a twist.

Indeed.

Laura Click, Jenn Whinnem and  Stanford Smith at Social Slam 2012

Laura Click, Jenn Whinnem and Stanford Smith at Social Slam 2012

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My Twitter Pal, Jenn

Jenn Whinnem is the best writer I’ve seen around, and she’s an amazingly good editor, too. She works at the Connecticut Health Foundation, and she’s #RockHot, teaching peers and colleagues about social media and communications because she is totally an expert.

Jenn recently married, and she’s step mom to a young boy. She is always around to listen to me rant about something on my mind, and she’s always there to pitch in and pick up the ball to help. The load she manages every day puts her squarely in my stratosphere of respect every day, and she manages half empty quite well; better than most.

I want to say thanks to Jenn for being the consummate community manager, friend, peer, colleague, and avid listener. I also want to thank her for writing with her neck out to show a side of persona, perspective, and pizazz that is not mainstream at all. I like that, for she consistently makes me think a little harder and a bit differently.

Thank you, Ms. Whinnem for writing here and being you.

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The Happy Friday Series: Glass Half Empty & Happy

A woman I designated as  Social Media Woman of the Year 2012 graces us today with her always unique perspective on life, topics and happenstance. I encourage your read today as we continue The Happy Friday Series with awesome guest appearances thus far by Peg Fitzpatrick, Susan Silver and Paula Kiger. Jenn Whinnem is our guest today, and you may want to read her “coming out” story that debuted on this blog in 2010 before you read what’s below.

Jenn Whinnem Says:

credit: sodahead.com

credit: sodahead.com

The Glass is Half Empty and I Couldn’t be Happier.

Come here. Want to hear a secret? Here’s how I survived public humiliation and other fallout from:

  • Having to leave my dream college, one year in
  • Unemployment
  • Canceling my own wedding two months beforehand
  • The slow ratcheting up of an ultimately fatal illness
  • Several romances gone south (like all the way to the south pole, hanging out with the penguins south)

Until age nine, I drank a lot of Mylanta, because I was a really nervous kid and my stomach hurt from being so nervous. The short version was that I was terrified at all times that I would embarrass myself in public.

But then I got philosophy!

At age nine or so, I read Sixth Grade Can Really Kill You. “What are you so afraid of?” someone asks the protagonist. “The worst it can do is kill you.”

The light bulb went off. I was so relieved, I cried. Public humiliation would hurt, but not kill me.

Yeah, at age nine, I accepted my death, and put down the Mylanta. If I did in fact die, okay, I’d be dead, so it wouldn’t matter. But nobody was going to kill me if I said the wrong thing to a relative at my birthday party or accidentally farted in the grocery store.

Some people this is really weird, or even dark, that a nine year old thought about death like this. But I never was an optimist. I’m also not a pessimist. I consider myself more of an absurdist.

Here is the resiliency I developed as a result of my philosophy:

  • Any time I found myself in a rotten situation, I would determine the worst case scenario
  • It wouldn’t be death
  • So then I’d figure out how to deal with the other inevitable losses
  • And I’d FIND the humor in it (this is the absurd part).

See, if it doesn’t kill you, it’s just going to be inconvenient. Don’t sweat inconvenient. Take a day to sulk, then suck it up and be done with it.

Someone sues you? Hire a lawyer. Can’t afford one? Whatever, you can make it work. Clients haven’t paid you, and you are going to miss your mortgage payment? Be late on your payment. Take charge of what you can control.

It’s not that I think that any of this is ideal. I’d rather not be sued or default on my mortgage. But here’s what you’ll find:

  • You don’t feel powerless anymore. You have an ACTION PLAN.
  • Since you’re focused on action and not victimhood, people will crawl out of the woodwork to help you. Emotional drowning scares good helpers away. (it is okay to feel blech, but not to drown).
  • At least one person you know has been in your situation and knows how to navigate it.

Optimism didn’t really work for me. What did work was embracing reality, having a good laugh, and getting ON with it.

What’s your strategy for minimizing freak-outs when life hands you a lemon tree?

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Cystic Fibrosis Sufferer’s Vote And Why

Let’s get one thing straight; real straight. I have avoided anything oriented to politics this election season; you have not seen a blog post about political leanings or who’s getting my vote. I’m not brave enough, but one of my friends is. If anyone so much as disrespects her for her views on this blog, I’m gonna come find you.

Jenn Whinnem and I go way back to about 2009 when we met on Twitter and I got to meet her IRL twice. She informed this community in a guest post here that she has cystic fibrosis, a chronic and fatal disease for which there is no cure. To live beyond mid-life, she likely will require a lung transplant. What that also means is her medical care on a daily basis is exorbitant.

Listen to her story here, and in the spirit that is this community, I beg for your respect for one American’s perspective. It may not be yours, but it’s hers, and whether or not I share her view is my business.

I will always be a member of the Jenn Whinnem fan club. She’s an amazing writer, a strong supporter of anyone on the Interwebz, and she has enough quirkiness to make me shake my head in amazement and say, “Atta girl!”  She speaks her mind, has strong opinions, and is very good at what she does. I consider this house her blog when she wants a forum, as she has no blog of her own.

If you have something positive to share, please do so in the spirit of ‘raderie and support. If you feel like bashing, please go elsewhere…thank you, kindly.

Here’s Jenn…