June 30, 2011

Happy Social Media Day 2011! How YOU Can Participate!

In case you didn’t know, it’s the 2nd annual social media day - or #SMDay to all you socially savvy multimedia peeps out there. Let’s take a step back and jump off the grid for a moment to take it all in – after all, if you’re reading this you’re probably over-programmed and need to take a quick walk to ponder what social media is and the power of what it can do for you personally and professionally.

First, what is social media? If you don’t know the answer to that question, you must be: a) living in a rural village (still no excuse - people from remote villages in South Africa have corresponded with me through a Facebook friend); or b) you know that it has to do with Facebook, Twitter, multimedia, etc. but you may not know exactly how to define it; or c) you’re my immigrant Asian mother who has never touched email, thinks Facebook is a cosmetic procedure, and doesn’t know that “Google” is more than baby talk.


If you’re at a loss for words and need a definition – Google it! Here’s the online Merriam-Webster Dictionary’s definition:

social media

noun pl but singular or pl in constr

Definition of SOCIAL MEDIA: forms of electronic communication (as Web sites for social networking and microblogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content (as videos)

So the next logical question is - what is social media day? Isn’t that everyday?!

A quick Google search (no, Google is not paying me, by the way) led me to Mashable’s definition of the true essence of #SMDay to celebrate "the technological advancements that enable everyone to connect with real-time information, communicate from miles apart, and have their voices be heard."

I’m feeling immensely inspired because I attended a Social Media for Nonprofits event where Social Media Mavens like Beth Kanter (who inspired us nonprofiteers to network and find those free agents), Guy Kawasaki (who taught us how to be enchanting), and J.D. Lasica (who challenged us to streamline our tagline and boil down our cause to a strong, single sentence) shared their Social Media Swag for nonprofit ninjas like me.

I invite you to participate with my GoInspireGo (GIG) team and I today on this #SMDay 2011 by:

- Facebook/Tweet a message acknowledging that it's Social Media Day and encouraging people to make plans and meet up with at least one of their online friends. Make sure to use this hashtag: #smday 2011 and include us in the conversation using our handle: @GoInspireGo.

… and for those of you who are always tethered to your telephones, slaves to your SMS, or fanatically Facebook obsessed, perhaps you can do this:

- Facebook/Tweet us a message acknowledging that it's Social Media Day and ask people to post a comment about how social media helped them reconnect with someone – and then meet up with them in person. We still do need that personal connection, after all.

Then again, sometimes, I think being like my mom would keep me more calm and centered. Someone recently asked me, “Wow, you’ve done so much in your 30+ years of your life. You accomplished your goals to report in a large TV market and for PBS.  You teach Multimedia and write curriculum for the University of San Francisco and the Academy of Art.  You created GIG, share your blogs on the Huffington Post, Intent.com and have been invited to blog for Yahoo! What does your mom think?”

The answer is simple: My mom doesn’t know what multimedia is. Mom recently asked me (in the cutest broken Chinglish), “I don’t understand, how do the word get on com-putah for e-mail?”

Happy SMDay2011 everyone! Looking forward to your comments, Tweets, FB messages – and I promise you if you “like” me, I will “like" you back!

And as for mom, I’ll get off the grid right now and call her to say hi!

June 13, 2011

GIG Give-Away: Tell Us What Inspires You

What inspires you? A friend or family member? A work of art? Cooking? Being out in nature? Your bike?

Respond via Facebook or Twitter starting today through Sunday, 6/19 and you will be entered into a drawing for a free VIP pass to Seren-i-Tea in the Square, happening in San Francisco’s Union Square on June 25, 2011. The midday event, hosted by Mallika Chopra, founder of Intent.com and daughter of famed author Dr. Deepak Chopra, features meditation, yoga, education and refreshments with the goal of encouraging and inspiring people to take time out to achieve balance in our hectic lives.

The event is open to the public, but as a VIP, you will receive a custom tote that contains a yoga mat, a designer scarf, and other goodies - a total value of $75. GIG VIPs also receive a $50 Whole Foods gift card.

Enter the contest by telling us who or what inspires you in one of the following ways:
  • Like Go Inspire Go on Facebook, then post a comment or upload a photo on our page
  • Follow, then tag @GoInspireGo on Twitter and include the hashtag #GIGVIP in your tweet

We will be looking at responses through the end of Sunday, June 19. We will then randomly select 8 winners and share their responses with you on Monday, June 20.

We look forward to hearing from you!

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Here’s more info about the event -

What: Seren-i-Tea in the Square, an interactive midday event featuring meditation, yoga, education and refreshments.

Who: Registration for this event is open to the public, but 8 GIG readers get to attend as VIP guests! Featured guests include:
Mallika Chopra – The daughter of Deepak Chopra, Mallika Chopra is a mother, author, blogger and founder of Intent.com. She will serve as event keynote to guide participants in finding serenity in their daily lives.
Stephanie Snyder – Well known for her unique ability to infuse her challenging classes with strategic sequencing, yoga philosophy, technical alignment, and heart-felt humor, Stephanie has been featured on the cover of Yoga Journal Magazine, has been a contributing writer to Yoga Journals' "Home Practice" and was named San Francisco's most sought after yoga teacher by InStyle Magazine.

When: Saturday, June 25, 2011 from 12:30 - 2:00 p.m.

Where: Union Square, 333 Post Street, San Francisco, CA 94108

Why: Our hectic days are consumed with jobs, loved-ones, everyday pressures and obligations. Often the last obligation we think about is the one we have to ourselves.  This event is aimed at providing a real-time “self-moment” for participants and will offer tools and techniques to make “me-time” a deliberate and important part of daily routines – helping us achieve balance from within. [Be sure to follow @SokenbichaTea on Twitter and like Sokenbicha on Facebook.]

June 8, 2011

7 Rules for Making More Happiness: Design a Happy Life…NOW

Ask yourself this simple question (Warning- it may lead to a complex answer):
Are you happy? What’s stopping you from living your fullest, happiest life now? Is it money, health, or circumstances you were born into?

This eloquent TED talk by designer Stefan Sagmeister reviews 7 Rules for Making More Happiness. It gave me pause to think of all the things I’m grateful for, and I hope it inspires you to do the same. Sagmeister, whose clients including the Rolling Stones and Lou Reed, offers a refreshing new look and some interesting stats on happiness indicators – many of which may surprise you!



I think this is fabulous, easily applicable advice. My takeaway from Sagmeister’s talk: Start simply. “Do more of the things I like to do, and less of the things I don’t like.”

His simple advice brings to mind a real life story that deeply resonated with me:
I recently heard that a good friend’s cousin, Laura, passed away. Laura worked her whole life, saving every single penny for her retirement, according to her plans, at age 63, a time when she believed she could finally be happy, relaxed, and free. She was going to travel the world. Instead, sadly, Laura died at age 62.

Earlier in my career as a TV Reporter, I always thought that if I got a job in a bigger market, earned a bigger paycheck, bought a better car, that I would be happy. I achieved all that, but didn’t feel much happier. My epiphany -- that I was always happy – it was a state of mind that none of the materials goals could change.

As I get older, I‘ve stopped trying to be happy. I discovered that happiness is being grateful for what I have now, at this present moment. I realize that I choose to be in the state of happiness now.

You can experience this contentment, too. Keep a gratitude journal or look for at least 3 things you’re grateful for everyday. The future isn’t guaranteed; it’s just a dream. It doesn’t exist yet, nor is it promised to us. You have the power to be happy right now, so don't wait for tomorrow. And if you’re still seeking happiness, here are some words to live happily ever after by…

‎"Don't seek happiness. If you seek it, you won't find it, because seeking is the antithesis of happiness." - Eckhart Tolle