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Desire leads to connection

I was asked once again this week “How do you connect with people so easily?”. I think about the answer all the time, because I am asked at least twice a week.

Desire is an underlying reason. I am continually seeking out what I desire in life. Going one step further I am pursuing those desires. I have found is that I am drawn to others that are passionate about life and are living from their heart as well. Now I could go into what those desires are but really I think it has more to do with attraction. We feel inspired when we are around people who bring out the best in us. I make the most connections on the days that I am awake to my heart. The days that I allow myself to be driven by hope, life and desire are the days I meet the most interesting people.

This morning I watched a video that my two friends Joshua Gordon and Jim Gray shared. It brought back many desires that led me down this path of connection, writing and art. Watch it and pay attention to your reactions. They may answer some deep questions. And if you are asking yourself “How do I connect with others more?”, let those reactions take you on a journey. You may be surprised with the outcome.

A study in the love of women through Shakespeare

Watching a production of Romeo and Juliet as a ballet around 1990 was the first time I realized how much Shakespeare’s work impacted how I viewed and appreciated women.

All the works from The Taming of the Shrew to Much Ado About Nothing, helped shape my appreciation, respect and ultimately love for what I believe is the embodiment of God’s characteristics of beauty, power, compassion and gentleness; women.

As I have stated before, my favorite of the bard’s work is Henry V. And you would probably think it odd that I would mention it when speaking of the feminine half of humanity. But in the play I remember being captivated by the character of princess Catherine of Valois. Here we have royalty being thrown together in the midst of such turmoil. Their countries are at war. But in the end as the play portrays and reflects historical truth, they both being of tempered and stubborn stock, ultimately fall in love. Henry died two years later from sickness on the battlefield but his captured heart is forever accurately portrayed in the treaty signing scene when he asks to be alone with her.

“If thou would have such a one,
take me;
and take me, take a soldier;
take a soldier, take a king.”

At forty two I find myself deeply in love with a woman. And I love all her characteristics from feistiness to gentle femininity. I recognize them because of Shakespeare’s words and those years hoping that one day I would find my own true love.

I am not a fan of country music but there is one song by Rascal Flats that gets me every-time and reminds me of all I have learned along the way.

“I couldn’t see how every sign pointed straight to you
That every long lost dream lead me to where you are”

And so as I look at my beautiful daughter and her lovely mom, I see how through tragedies, romances, comedies and yes histories, I marvel how Shakespeare’s work has taught much of what I know and love about women.

Here is to that continued education on his birthday. Join me in celebrating with others at: http://happybirthdayshakespeare.com/

Connectedness to Spreading Ideas: Waves to Tsunamis in Film

Two months ago I watched a panel held at Sundance titled Power of Story: How Docs Changed Change. It was moderated by CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien. The panelists included Sundance Institute President and Founder Robert Redford, Sheila Nevins, president of HBO Documentary Films and Nick Fraser commissioning editor of BBC’s Storyville. I had hoped the panel would have talked more about the role of connectedness in spreading the message and discussion of the documentary subject.  It never happened.  The time was spent mainly talking about film form and such and the only mention of the viewers role in , as the panel was called, “how docs changed change” was by Fraser who was amazed at receiving a mere hundred emails from fans for one of BBC’s documentaries.  Really?  I am sure if he had the correct tools he would have seen thousands of mentions and interactions through blogs, tweets and other connecting tools.

My conclusion was that these film makers were terribly disconnected from current trends and in the end their audiences.  The change is occurring because we are becoming more connected than ever and films like the record breaking Kony 2012 film regardless of your opinion about the ethics, shows how an idea can be spread through the format.  What filmaker need to understand though is how they can best use the connected audience.

Here is the panel in it’s entirety. Your thoughts?

Watch live streaming video from sundancefest at livestream.com

Adding multiple signatures using gmail

One of my favorite tools to stay connected is Gmail. I currently have about 7 email accounts that I manage through it. Now with that many accounts I need a way to easily add different signatures when composing a message depending on which account I am sending from. This past week I found a blog explaining how this can be done pretty easily using Google Labs for Gmail. Here is a short tutorial show how I am using it. Enjoy. You might want to select HD play and expand to full screen to best view.

Taking control of your Facebook feed

Most of the world already knows that Facebook is one of the best ways to stay connected. What many people don’t understand is that what they see in their main feed on either the top news or most recent feed, is not a full account of their friend’s updates and activities. Facebook has an algorithm it uses based on activity level, conversation and other factors. Facebook is in control of who’s updates you see.

That can be tweaked though. Like Twitter, you can create lists of your family, co-workers, or all of them. These lists are managed under drop the down menu when the “Most Recent” tab is clicked. It takes some navigation to see list though. I have devised a….

Editorial Calendar: from sporadic to consistent blogging

I first found this great WordPress plugin tool via Chris Brogan’s post. But the cool part is, Editorial Calendar changed my blogging habits completely. I went from posting sporadically, which is too common for most bloggers, to posting consistently three times a week. Today I asked my friend Justin Lukasavige to do a quick video showing how he uses it. Thanks Justin!

One last note: I use the tool on the fly every-time I get a post idea. I get them in the middle of conversations, while travelling, watching a movie, you name it. Instead of making a note on my iPad, sending myself an email writing it on my hand, I now open up the Editorial Calendar, …..

And the winner is: Kindle giveaway

So we have a winner, number 26, Rocco Capra! Actually you all won. I spoke with New Leaf Publishing about offering the Kindle version to all the entrants, and I am pleased to announce you will be receiving a copy (expect an email from me with details from New Leaf in the next few days) . If you don’t have a Kindle you can get a free app from Amazon for your PC, Mac, Android, iPhone, iPad,BlackBerry or Windows 7 Phone here. I really enjoyed the stories people told and I hope to comment back to most of them this week. Here is a short screencast showing how I picked the winner. Again thanks to Scott Williams for showing me the method. Thanks again for participating and have a great New Year!

Win a free Kindle with Eric Alexander’s The Summit included

There is really so much I want to say about Eric Alexander’s Book “The Summit”. It is one of those books that you want to read slowly over a few weeks and a short blog post seems out of place. For me it was more of a devotional, and actually a book I will probably keep by my bed and process slowly again. Eric’s writing is unpolished and authentic. I felt as if he was sitting there telling each story in person. Eric has led many expeditions, over his career as a climber and outdoor guide, including several with people of various physical disabilities. However, after reading his accounts about these people, the word hero seems more appropriate than the word disabled.

Stepping out from behind the curtain: an ad campaign revisited

Two years ago I wrote about JCPenney’s viral ad campaign known as the Dog House Video. As the video began to spread around the internet again this Christmas season I took some time to revisit the campaign. Once a company has gained the customers attention engagement should follow.

Now that the video has millions of views and that the company has established itself as a brand that can make a viral video, customer…

Tool Wednesday: Rapportive walkthrough from Andy Traub

My friend and one of my personal tech guides Andy Traub gives us a walk through (video) of Rapportive and “raplets”, an add on to manage social media connections and contacts simultaneously. Managing your contacts is probably one of the most important things a good connector can do. I will have more on that in the coming weeks. For now learn from one expert I enjoy learning from. Please leave a comment if you have a question for Andy or a tip of your own…

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