There was a guy at the Problogger Event wearing Google Glass. He talked about what they can do - make him see and interact with the internet using his voice, ear, eye and brain. This is the future and we are in it. Amy Porterfield, Facebook marketing extraordinaire, said Google Glass is like having a baby or a puppy - they're a total chick magnet. Here's Problogger chatting on the couch to Google Glass man.
Pip Lincolne and I had a photo taken with Google Glass man. We stood next to The Future.
His name is Trey Ratcliff - a photographer and blogger (that's his amazing photo above and below) and Google Plus expert (with over six million G+ contacts!), and to be honest, I was more interested in his beliefs than the highly technical and slightly distracting eyewear.
At times, the Problobber Event was a little evangelical. In a good way. So much was said that made me want to shout hallelujah or fist pump the air. Instead, to avoid looking like the only evangelical one in the room, I madly tweeted the things that resonated with me. You might have noticed that I've been writing a lot about dreaming, taking the leap and making great plans for myself. I'm often in a sense of wonder, realising the potential. And Trey Ratcliff's keynote address and photos at Problogger made me dream big, realise my potential and make more plans. People at Problogger just got it. They got the excitement of blogging, they got the drive and passion it brings. They understood and emphasised the feeling that blogging and creative pursuits are valid career paths.
Trey's keynote address on the second morning of Problogger had me fist punching, despite my throbbing headache from cider flu (read - a hangover from shenanigans the previous night). He spoke off the cuff, regaling funny stories that all had strong messages - the stories were chosen by the roll of a dice. His photos were magical, adding to the power of realising our potential. He spoke a lot about being different ("We don't want our kids to grow up 'normal' because interesting things happen on the edges of the bell curve.") and living in the moment ("I found peace through living in the now. I make more memories this way.") and being true to our dreams - getting out of situations that make us unhappy and dispassionate, and getting into situations that make us happy and passionate. He said he manages a small number of employees who are all passionate - and he'd rather this than managing a large number who are dispassionate.
"You can accidentally get good at a life you don't want And you end up trapped", Trey said. I feel this way a lot, and recently I've realised it's time to make changes. But I've also been thinking 'reasonably', wondering if my feelings are too self entitled, like I'm special. And then Trey said "We all have the gentle throbbing in the back of our heads that we're meant to do great and interesting things", followed by "I might not be much but I'm all I can think about." And I imaginary fist punched the air so hard. Trey said: "The question is not what's the worst that could happen?, but what's the best that could happen?" What is the best that could happen when you follow your dreams? That you are happy and fulfilled?
Trey also spoke about those who doubt you, who don't understand your passions - the haters, if you like. He said that in the photography industry, he does things differently - post edits his photos, but he doesn't let the critics get to him because he believes in what he does. "Begone with everyone that doesn't like what you have to say. Let the rocks they throw at you fall", he said. I've felt, in recent times, that I've burnt a few bridges with people. I realise I cannot please everyone, and have not taken things to heart as I may have done previously.
In blogging, and all creative pursuits, there's self doubt. Blogging and digital media is new, there's a high level of uncertainty and distrust. And there is the notion that following your dreams is unrealistic, selfish, frivolous, irresponsible and self entitled. I have read a little about the self entitlement and expectations of Gen Ys lately, and have worried I am the type of Gen Y that the journalists are describing. But those who have made the jump before us just get it. They will support your dreams. "Stop worrying what others think", Trey told us. "Be yourself. People that should be in your world will come into your world."
Pip Lincolne said "If you hang out with the right people, all kinds of possibilities present themselves. Ideas spark all over the place and you can feel yourself being grounded and growing like a vine, all at the same time." And I strongly believe this. The people in my life are bringing out the best in me, giving me ideas and support, and a great energy that makes me want to do more.
In Trey's keynote speech, there was so much validation that blogs are valid and worthy. They're a way of expressing ourselves and also exploring our thoughts and feelings. "A blog is probably the greatest self discovery tool of our age. It's a digital version of ourselves", Trey said. I've certainly felt that I've come to know myself better through blogging - I've grown personally and professionally. Writing this blog has helped me to know myself and know where I want to be. I'm more aware of the path I want to take than I've ever been.