Using blogging to engage in meaningful conversations

October 8th, 2019

Whoa, look at that… I am back to blogging again! Let’s be real: blogging is a pain. It takes a ton of effort to publish a post and you don’t get an instant return on investment. This is where I failed and gave up every time.

But like most things, my perspective is usually incorrect my first time through. This time, it’s a whole different perspective. Instead of chasing Google Analytics metrics, I am measuring success by the number of meaningful conversations that my blog creates.

Let me explain more…

Life without social media

Deactivating my Facebook account in 2015 was one of the best decisions that I have ever made on the Internet. Not only did it enhance my privacy, but it also allowed me to develop a better mindset. I was no longer having my subconscious programmed by constant exposure to negativity or flat out lies.

Breaking the addiction to infinite scrolling greatly improved my overall happiness. My time was used more wisely and I gained dopamine through my daily achievements, rather than seeing the next social media post.

You can still find me on Twitter, but I have strict Screen Time rules on my devices that prevent me from getting stuck in a scrolling loop. I have a specific way on how I manage my screentime, and it works very well. I’ll be sure to share those specifics in a future post.

Living in the dark isn’t that great

Stepping away from Facebook wasn’t all roses and daisies. After a few years of being disconnected, I realized I lost contact with a lot of people.

My answer to this was to just individually email people to set up a time to get together. You’ll never beat the quality of having an in-person conversation, but it comes with some drawbacks:

  • People are busy. Getting schedules together can sometimes take months.
  • Interacting with that person once every 6 – 12 months just isn’t enough. Our conversations were amazing but lacked the spontaneity of sharing ideas. We always had to wait until the next time we got together to see how the other was doing.

Is joining Facebook again the answer? Definitely not. I can count on one hand with the number of meaningful conversations I have had on there.

I need a medium where I can share updates to start conversations with people, no matter what social media platform they belong to (or choose not to belong to).

So what’s the answer?

My answer is to “work in public”. I was inspired by this idea from @JoshuaWold and @jonhainstock. My strategy is I will send out brief updates on what I am learning and working on. Chances are, someone in my network of people may be trying the same problem that I am working on.

This will create spontaneous discussions and opportunities for me to learn more from others.

I envision this process to be very easy for anyone to just hit the reply button and share their thoughts back to me. This will open the door to an endless amount of great conversations that I would have missed out on before.

By staying focused on the mission of having more meaningful conversations, success will be more tangible than seeing if I am getting traffic to my website.

What will I be talking about?

I mainly want to hear how others are doing, but I have a few topics that I might chat about to at least start the conversation:

?‍♂ 1,000-mile annual biking goal
I am nearing my 1,000-mile biking goal for the year. There are a number of lessons that I learned regarding physical health while doing this. Lessons on when you are just doing too much or just not enough. I’m hoping to break this goal either this week or next. You’ll have to stay tuned to see if I can make it!

? I just returned from a European backpacking trip
My wife and I hit up 3 countries, 4 cities, and traveled over 10,000 miles throughout the entire journey in 10 days. Visiting Normandy Beach (the place where the Allied Powers invaded Nazi Germany to liberate France during WWII), was the biggest blessing. This has been my #1 bucket list item since I was 12 years old. Experiencing this iconic place of bravery and sacrifice was humbling. I’ll share more of what I learned in future posts.

? Improving self-discipline
There was a side effect of this trip that gave me the idea to me trying something new to improve my productivity, self-discipline, and personal health. So far I am on Day 3 of it, but I will report back and share the results once I ride this out for a little longer. Stay tuned on the results.

? Notion should be used by every professional, maker, and artist
I’ve been using Notion since Q1 of 2019, and it has completely changed how I organize my thoughts. There are a number of tricks that I have learned that help me grow personally, but also get things done professionally. Notion is the top software that has positively influenced my life. Every creative professional should have Notion in their toolkit. I’ll explain more once I have these posts ready.

How can you follow along?

The best way to follow along will be on any of my social media channels or subscribing by email (for those social media minimalists like me).

Enough about me…

The most important question is: How are you doing? I didn’t make this blog to write about myself. I really want to hear how things are going for you.

What problems are you currently trying to solve? What topics would you be interested in learning more about?

Just reach out to me on any of my social profiles or send me an email through my email list! Looking forward to chatting more soon.

Like this post? Have additional thoughts?

If you liked this article, encourage me to keep writing by sharing it with your friends. If you have additional thoughts or a question, join the discussion on Twitter:
Hello! My name is Jay Rogers.

I like to have meaningful conversations with others who share the passion of continuous personal improvement. I'm the Co-Founder of 521 Dimensions where I'm a DevOps engineer that accidently ended up in application & user-experience design. 🀖🎚

Please say hello to me on Twitter, Strava, LinkedIn or my email list. I'm also a huge believer in an open Internet, so feel free to subscribe on RSS as well. I would love to hear what you are working on!