Citizens of the World,
These first six months has been a thrilling ride. I cannot express to you, my readers, how much I’ve enjoyed blogging about social media, technology, and design. LonePlacebo.com has become my outlet and creative playground. This blog gave me a voice and a place where I could be heard. When people asked about my interests and hobbies 2-3 years ago, I could only stumble on my own words. Things quickly changed, however, when LonePlacebo was born on Weebly.com over a year ago.
Granted, I did not create my first website using Weebly. Like most people in the late 1990′s, I had a Geocities webpage. As I can recall, the site looked something like this.
Now, things are a bit more professional with WordPress, although I do sometimes miss the autoplay music in the background. Besides blogging, web design is now something I find fascinating and intriguing. I have always been an artistic person; I took art classes throughout my childhood and have sketchbooks filled with pictures of Pokemon to prove it. Web design became one of those things which occupied my mind wherever I was. Sitting in class, I often fight the urge to start sketching a design that suddenly comes to mind. When midterms or finals show up, I can’t help but laugh when I find almost as many pages filled with my drawings then my notes from lectures.
One of the hardest questions that one of my college friends posed to me is, “Why do you blog?” At that time, I struggled with the answer. I told him that I blogged because I wanted to learn more about the things I was interested in and that it also served as a way for me to work on communicating my thoughts and ideas in writing and with people.
Retrospectively, I continue to stand by that answer, though I now approach it from a slightly different perspective. In the age of Twitter, Facebook, iPads, and WordPress, technology has not changed the meaning of blogging. As Scott Berkun discussed during WordCamp SF 2010, writing has not changed over these last couple of centuries. Only the means to communicate our message across to our audience. Namely, the technology.
Centuries ago, the only way you could’ve learned about an oil spill in the Gulf Coast is if you heard it from a friend or happened to see it yourself. Now, that news travels instantly to our homes and across the world whether BP likes it or not. Everything you say or do, can end up instantly on the Internet the moment someone hits tweet, share, or publish.
So, why do I blog today? I blog because it helps me identify the things that matter to me most and, thus, allow me to devote less time to the things that do not spark my interest. When I first launched this site, I expected to focus solely on the topic of technology. Soon, I was intrigued with social media and started exploring that topic. Lastly, I rediscovered my artistic side which ignited in me a passion for web design.
As I conclude my address, I offer some words of wisdom courtesy of my friend who asked about why I blogged. My friend was my roommate this past year and I remember how he stuck a post-it to the bookshelf that faced him as he sat at his desk. Scribbled on the paper read the words, “Dream it, or do it!” I never asked him about it, but I always remember it when I found myself frustrated or lacking motivation. “What’s the purpose of everything? Why do I go to college? Why do I have a blog?” I asked myself. “Does it even matter whether I fail or succeed?”
My professor often told us in class that “you don’t have to do a damn thing in your life, as long as you’re willing to live with the consequences.” That is the way I see things as I traverse this chapter in my life. At the end of the day, it is in my hands whether I decide what to do with my life. My parents, friends, and teachers can only offer their advice and support but cannot do the work for me.
So, it is without a doubt, that I am determined to pursue my dreams and aspirations of doing what I love every day of my life. No, I will not sit on a couch and watch the world go by before my eyes. Dreams never become reality until you take that first step and make it happen. I’m going to make it happen.
Photo by Franco Folini