Twitter – it’s not just what you’re eating for breakfast anymore.

Twitter was the LAST thing I thought was going to be a valuable part of my job search.  I basically decided to get on it so that I’d be staying on top of social media while my design skills were retreating in a rarely accessed part of my brain.  So I signed up with Twitter.com, wrote my profile & started nosing around for people that I knew.  But the real magic started with Tweetdeck.  It’s a companion free software that lets you see who you are following (All Friends), who’s talking to/about you (Mentions), customized searches, and even links to your Facebook friends updates.  I use the search function to find people that are talking about a specific topic, i.e. “unemployment” or “sustainability” or “Milwaukee”.  

Phil Gerbyshak has a great intro to Twitter/Tweetdeck here and also a slideshow from his presentation at Social Media University Milwaukee.  There is also a good post on Twitter for the job search, sparked by yours truly.  So get on there & start Tweeting!  Post links to articles that you find interesting, or inspirational quotes.  Follow some of your friends & see who THEY are following.  And when Friday comes, join the #FF party (#FF is a “hash tag” that refers to Follow Friday”) and tweet your favorites so people following you can find some new people to follow.  Follow?

Well, I’ve just reached the point where “follow” doesn’t sound like a real word anymore.  Happy Tweeting!

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Welcome to TED.com Tuesday! (although you’re probably reading this Wednesday)

TED.com You need to spend some time here.  I’m serious.  No, I’m REALLY serious.  What is TED.com?  Quite simply (to quote their website) “…the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers, challenged to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes.”

Here’s the first one you should watch:  brain researcher Jill Bolte Taylor studied her own stroke as it happened.  http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/jill_bolte_taylor_s_powerful_stroke_of_insight.html

Brilliant people that are great public speakers – and most of them have a great sense of humor too.  Click around & find ones that speak to you – and I’d love to hear about them.

Help someone else, and help yourself in the process.

Everyone says that you should take time to do volunteer work while you are looking for work – and everyone is right.  I joined the New Berlin Junior Woman’s Club in April, and have met 30+ new women.  Women that have jobs, families, busy lives of their own, but take time out to make the world better for others.  I volunteered at the National Dash – a run/walk on July 4th that raised over $6000 this year.  $6000!!!!!  And today I helped out at the New Berlin Historical Society’s  Historic Day at Prospect Hill – spent 4 hours selling food and drinks to families.  I got to know NBJWC members that I hadn’t met before, and met the wonderful men & women from the Historical Society.  At the end of my shift, my feet hurt, I was hot & tired, and SO excited to do it again next year!

I’ve heard it said “You are the average of the people you surround yourself with.”  Today, I am SPECTACULAR.

Some days of unemployment are good – the days you spend with friends.

Like today.  I didn’t have any meetings, presentations, coffees, cover letters to write, or companies to research.  Just a lunch scheduled with 3 other women who’s names also start with J, and are some of my favorite people.  J2 drove so I (J1) got to relax in the car, J3 got us up to date on her great kids and stories of their college life, and J4 bounced ideas off us for a new career.  We had fantastic food at Beans & Barley – I have GOT to go there more often.  We parted company, and J2 & I went searching for dulce de leche sauce, Whole Foods did not have it, but El Rey did.  More importantly (to me anyway) El Rey had fantastic pork tamales and cheap cilantro.  A couple more hours and then it’s time to hit the last church festival of the season.  A beautiful end of summer day in Milwaukee with good food & great friends.  Doesn’t get much better.

*My apologies to anyone reading this that is not in SE WI and has no clue what Beans & Barley, El Rey, or a church festival is.  You’ll just have to come visit & find out for yourself.

**Thanks to Phil G for the tip to link to B&B – it was super easy to figure out!

Hello world!

12:32 am.  Online writing a blog.  I should be in bed but the iced coffee I had at 3:30 pm seems to be keeping me up into the wee hours.  Let me be the first to warn you that one of the potential side effects of unemployment is a coffee addiction.  Why?  Because if you are really working at networking (how can I have so much “work” and still be unemployed?  More on that later…) it means that you could easily be patronizing 3 coffee shops a week.  One of these days I’m going to take a map & put little flags at all the coffee shops in the metro Milwaukee area that garnered a small chunk of my unemployment check.  If I were a coffee shop owner, I’d offer a discount to the local job seekers.  But then I’d be part of the problem.