It is frightening how fast things can change and how we are, or should be, accountable for adapting to this change in such a timely manner. Things don’t stop, but continue to evolve and mutate into something that wasn’t intended or maybe even desired.

This past month has been filled with new, exciting and sometimes difficult experiences. The absolute best thing to happen to me occurred last Thursday with the birth of my nephew, Joseph Emerson.

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4 days old and he already has the coolest hair.

Going through the past couple of days with a new nephew, new semester, and new changes at my internship…I have never felt more tired in my life. It requires a revisit to how you lead everyday, how you deal with the changes and being okay with not dealing with them the right way the first time.  Another point that I began thinking about was taking advantage of new beginnings. From the outside it seems extremely overwhelming to have so much to adapt to in such little time. I don’t want to get left behind or miss out, but I find it hard to keep up with school, work, internship, being an aunt, etc. But, then I try to stand back and apply some perspective.

There is this documentary, Born into Brothels, that chronicles children in Calcutta, India’s notorious red light district who were given cameras to photograph their surroundings. Most of the children’s parents are prostitutes and the children are left to, not only fend for but survive by themselves.  Their new beginning started with a camera. Leaving the red light district in any capacity was an unimaginable thought to these children. There were no opportunities. Some children are now studying photography at a university.  The story is just very inspiring to me and I constantly refer back to it when I feel beaten down or bombarded with so many new things. I have to recognize the power new beginnings can have and respond in a way that takes advantage of the potential opportunities at hand. Again, the documentary is fantastic and you should definitely read more into all the various issues that children face everyday in the red light district.  This article is uplifting in that it focuses on child-welfare programs that are combating these issues through education and making drastic strides in keeping kids off the street and in school.

Lookie lookie! Watch the trailer and become instantly inspired!…I promise, you will be.

http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ehz3doE56A

 

This particular topic was not something I contemplated about until this past year or so. However, now it has become infiltrated into my daily schedule. What, when and with whom do I share my thoughts, experiences and ramblings with? What social media channel do I utilize to convey my passions or current emotion? And, on top of these, how do I decide what I share, if I share at all, and why? When seeing this written out, it is all pretty overwhelming to think that in my personal life I spend so much time considering what I want to share or contribute about my life. Here recently, particularly since I started my social work graduate internship with CARE, I have started having these same conversations but with a professionally driven focus. And it has quickly come to my attention how clear of a distinction is needed between using social media for personal or professional means. It is absolutely vital to instill guidelines in a professional setting, because oftentimes the line of what determines appropriateness varies from person to person.

 

I am on the Gender and Empowerment Unit at CARE and we have our own wikispace to inform and share gender related news, research, tools and bi-monthly newsletters. What I have been confronted with is the fact that the wikispace will always be limiting because it is an open, public space that requires content monitoring. So, just like with my personal social media websites where I have to streamline my information and how I am perceived, I have to do the same thing with professional sites. Ultimately, it is very time consuming to develop these separate mindsets. Econsultancy is a company that engages in digital marketing and they recently commented on findings from a study that highlighted the differences between professional and personal social networking. They coined this particular topic as ‘The Mindset Divide,’ which I thought was intriguing because it really translated well to how I view my personal interactions and the varying roles I have played in social media . I also thought it was neat that they chose such an appealing way to showcase this information. Check out ‘The Mindset Divide’ if you so please–

 

ImageSource: Econsultancy, 2012. Retrieved from http://econsultancy.com/us/blog/10755-personal-versus-professional-social-networks-infographic.