Twitter Unlocked

I’ve been on Twitter for a few years now.  It’s my favourite social media platform, even if it is hard to keep up with sometimes.  One of the things that I regularly see people say is that they don’t understand Twitter and are scared to get started.  I agree that Twitter can be quite overwhelming to the uninitiated but once you break it down it can be a great tool for promoting your blog and networking with other bloggers.

Here are my dos and don’ts  for getting the most out of Twitter.  Of course these are all things that I have found out by trial and error and I’m by no means an expert.

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Do follow real people.  This is probably one of the most important things in getting the most out of Twitter and it’s networking capabilities.  Have a look on your favourite blogs and find out their twitter handles, then give them a follow.  You can also do a search and find users who talk about specific topics that you are interested in.  If you only follow celebrities, or people with a high follower count vs a low follow count then all of the conversations you have are going to be one sided and you’re going to get frustrated really quickly.

Don’t use auto follow/unfollow.  Auto follow picks people with certain parameters and follows them under the guise that it’s you, they also then unfollow anyone who isn’t following you back.  I had one account do the follow/unfollow dance 4 times in a month.  I ended up having to block the account.  While her account wasn’t offensive in anyway, she just wasn’t the kind of account that I wanted to follow, something which an auto program is unable to determine.

Do create lists.  When you first start out this may seem silly but believe me, when your follow count begins to get into the hundreds then you will wish you had done it sooner!  Lists also make it easier to prioritise your reading if you have a limited time to spend on social media.

Don’t use automatic direct messages for new followers urging them to check out your product.  I liken these to the shop assistant who asks if you need any help when you have half a foot in the door.  They haven’t had time to look around, and chances are it will scare the follower off.  I have also heard a few people say that they will unfollow someone after receiving one of these.  Give your followers a chance to look around your profile at their own leisure and chances are if they followed you in the first place then they are already aware of your product/blog.

Do join in conversations.  That is one of my favourite things about Twitter, there are always conversations going on, regardless of the time of day.  If you feel that you have something to add to the conversation then please just jump in.  I have gained new followers through doing that, as well as finding some awesome new tweeps to follow.

Don’t be afraid to let your personality through on Twitter.  Another one of the things that I love about Twitter is that it really is just a micro way of blogging.  It’s a place to say what’s on your mind.  Eating a toasted sanga that is awesome?  Tweet about it and no doubt there will be someone who replies.

Do join in with Twitter parties.  Now these can seem really daunting for the new Twitter user but they really are a wealth of information and networking capabilities if you find parties that relate to your genre of blogging.  The only difference with a twitter party and ‘normal’ twitter is that the tweets are grouped together using a hashtag (#).  For example a party held in the bast by Brand Meets Blog has #BMBChat after every tweet.  Clicking on the hashtag while in Twitter will show you all of the tweets that used that hashtag.

Don’t follow people because you feel like you ‘have’ to.  I got caught in this trap early on and my feed ended up with a lot of chatter that I really wasn’t interested in.  It’s not that the people where necessarily bad or anything like that, it was just that our interests didn’t align and that’s perfectly fine.

Do HAVE FUN.  Twitter is supposed to be fun, even if it’s for a business.  If you aren’t having fun with it anymore then you aren’t going to put in the effort anymore and of course you won’t see the results you want.

Are you on Twitter?  Do you have any tips for people who are just starting out?

Introvert or Extrovert?

This week the hilarious Ness from Nessville is hosting The Lounge and the theme for the week is ‘Are you an introvert or an extrovert’.

I think I’m in the introvert camp.  Although those I get to know well probably wouldn’t class me as quiet at all lol!  Being an introvert gets a bit of a rough deal in the social stakes and can sometimes be accused of snobbery when all we really are is quiet.  It’s not that I don’t want to talk to you, I’m just damn scared!

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I never get bored.  Seriously.  I could spend time by myself all of the time and often do.  I had child free time over the weekend and I could have used the time to go out with friends..I read a book instead.

Although that of course has its downside because being an introvert means that I get overwhelmed in social situations really quickly.  If I spend a lot of time with other people then I need a couple of days to recuperate.

It’s pretty easy to tell that I like you.  When I feel comfortable ribbing you in public, know that I like you.  Sarcasm might be a coping mechanism but it works well and why fix it if it ain’t broke!

Details kinda matter to me.  I can hear the beat underneath the song.  I notice the person standing on their own.  Although my short attention span can sometimes get me into trouble.  Especially if you ask me I did yesterday.  Long term memory though is pretty crystal clear.  That time at that place, where we did that thing 10 years ago? Yeh I can remember it in detail.  What did I do last week?  Not a clue!

I have all of these conflicting behaviours, that sometimes I am not really sure if I am an introvert or not.  On one hand I keep things close to my chest, on the other I blurt them out with seemingly not a second thought.  I’m awkward in social situations, then crave the company of others at the same time.  I’m self aware at times to the point of disaster, then completely clueless all at once.  I notice the small things and miss the big ones.

Maybe fitting into one or the other doesn’t really matter.  Maybe none of us fit firmly into one introvert camp or the extrovert one.  I think that’s great.  We are all a mix of things that are awesome.  We have bits and pieces that come together to make a completely unique personality.  That’s pretty damn awesome when you think about it.  Even though you may share similar characteristics to other people, there really is no other person like you out there!

Are you an introvert or an extrovert?  Or do you think the whole thing is a bunch of crap?

Worry Wart Extraordinaire

A few weeks ago I mentioned to my psych that I had been getting up in the middle of the night to do a brain dump in a notebook because my brain was just overflowing.  It was like a light bulb went off in her head.  There was a flurry of paper and I had to fill out a couple of questionnaires to determine just how much of an issue worry and the intolerance of change is for me.

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I scored moderately high for worry and extremely high for intolerance of change.  There was a third one that I had to fill out but it had a pretty complicated scoring system so I won’t find out what the score is for that until my next appointment at the end of this week.

While it was interesting to see the difference in the scores between worry and intolerance, it came as no surprise to me that I have an extremely high intolerance for change.  Even Paul laughed when I told him that I had to fill out a questionnaire to discover something he could see easily.

You see having things change is quite possibly one of my biggest stress inducers.  Control freak is probably a bit of an understatement…however there is a catch.  My core belief also stops me from acting out on the intolerance of change, my need to avoid rejection trumps my need to have control.

All this means that the bulk of when I worry while playing over scenarios in my mind, happens at night, when there is no one else around, when I am trying to sleep.  The thing that I have found interesting since writing down the things that are bothering me is that I’ve noticed a pattern of the same thought processes happening over and over again each night.

There is a pattern of berating myself over everything that I said throughout the day.  I analyse everything I have said, looking for ways that I failed, that I looked stupid and said the wrong thing.  I go over and over the conversations, looking at ways that I could have changed it.  Of course none of this is helpful.  It turns my mind into knots of worry, and makes sleep elusive.

The other pattern emerging is that the need to control comes out in the hours when I am trying to sleep.  I go over my plans for the next few days, impatient that I have to wait to carry out things that I see as important.  I lay in bed going over the details, working out the things that could possibly go wrong.  I try to fish out every minute detail.  Of course this leads to further stress when things don’t go the way that I envisioned.

The brain dump has been really helpful for me to just get it all out of my brain.  I haven’t done any work on the actual thoughts but it’s the act of writing them down so far that has helped to make room for my mind to relax enough to sleep.  The worry is still there, but at least I have it written down so that it’s acknowledged rather than allowed to stew in my mind.

Do you worry a lot?  What things have you done to help yourself reduce the amount of worrying.

Linking up with Jess for IBOT

Confessions of the Micro Kind

Kirsty has got her blogging mojo back.  Yeah baaaby!  You totally said that in Austin Power’s voice didn’t you! This week is micro confessions or as I like to call them..the good old brain dump.

This weekend Mr 5 spent the weekend out at Paul’s.  I spent all of Saturday in bed alternating between reading a book, playing games on my phone and snoozing.  I do not feel a single ounce of guilt.

I’m having a big old green eyed monster moment (ok lots of moments) about all of the awesome bloggers who are heading to the Problogger Event this week!  I hope you all have an absolute ball, and learn a ton.

I got myself a mason jar glass as a laugh.  It is seriously the best cup I have ever used.  It’s not easily tipped over and fits a whole UDL can in it!  It’s a win – win for me.

I believe that the ‘seen’ function is the worst idea that Facebook has ever had.  Seriously.  It sets off all of my rejection insecurities.

When I go out for dinner I generally order seafood.  My thought is that I want to buy something that I can’t make myself at home or afford to make anyway.  Paul and I always get an entree too and totally make ourselves so full that we can barely move afterwards.  The best kind of dinner!

I’ve gotten to the point in my life where I actually really enjoy spending Saturday night at home with Paul and Mr 5 watching television.  I especially love watching British crime shows.  I know, I know hand over the Nana card now!

Two weeks ago while at the shops I got Mr 5 a packet of smarties.  He promptly forgot that he had them and they’ve been sitting on the bench calling my name ever since.  Mr 5 hadn’t mentioned them, so I finally gave in on Saturday and ate them.  He asked this morning where his smarties were.  I told him the dog ate them.

Two years ago I got a hairdryer in the boxing day sales.  I used it on my hair for the first time a few weeks ago.  Prior to that it had been used to dry the dog and wet bed sheets.  I still don’t use it to style, but when I’ve run out of clean towels and need to dry my hair.  I may also stand in front of the mirror and giggle to myself while I blow dry my hair from underneath and watch my hair stand on end.

I started this post almost three hours ago and I really struggled to think of anything to say.  Maybe I’m a little too open here on the blog, but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Do you need to get anything off your chest this week?

 

Cutie Pie Wall Stickers Review

*I received one set of wall stickers from Cutie Pie Wall Stickers.  As always, all opinions are my own.*

As Mr 5 has gotten older I have started letting him have more say in the things that are in his room.  At the moment it is personalised, without being age specific because I didn’t want to spend hundreds on accessories that he would grow out of again in a couple of years.  This means that he has furniture in his room that can go through with him well into adult years and just between you and me, I am a little jealous of his gorgeous pine tall boy and matching bed side table.

I am renting at the moment and while the rules are pretty relaxed because I rent through the government housing system, I don’t like to do anything to his room that has a long lasting effect like painting his walls.  His room did look pretty boring though so I was eager to do something to jazz it up a little bit.  I have been looking around for wall stickers but I couldn’t find any that suited that middle age group where Mr 5 is in.  He’s too big for the baby type jungle animals, but he’s not quite ready for the stuff that is aimed at the tween age group either.

cutie pie wall stickers logoWhen I had a look through the range at Cutie Pie Wall Stickers, I was in love.  They had a great range, for an affordable price.  I also love that they have a ‘How to Install‘ section on their website so you can see if they are the right products for you before you buy.

The site is super easy to navigate and I loved that the transaction was a simple two step process rather than having to wait for numerous pages to load that often have information that could be included on one page.

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Cutie Pie Wall Stickers also have free standard shipping to all Australian addresses.  Although if you just can’t wait for your products to arrive, you can pay an extra $12.95 to have your stickers sent by express post.  The stickers arrived within a week of placing my order, and it was great that they came in a cardboard tube to keep the Cutie Pie Wall stickers safe from any damaage.

I must admit that I was a little apprehensive about using the wall stickers because I kind of suck at anything that requires precision placement.  I was pleasantly surprised though at how easily the Cutie Pie Wall Stickers went onto the wall.  On the first application I had a couple of bubbles under the surface, but the stickers easily peeled off the wall again so I could straighten them up.

cutie pie wall stickersThe stickers are clear so the edges blend in perfectly with the wall and it really makes them feel like the characters are jumping off the wall.  The pack that we got is the Marvel DC comics which you can find here.  If you have a big superhero fan in your house Cutie Pie Wall Stickers also have a Spiderman and a Transformers set.

I’m really happy with the quality of the products I received from Cutie Pie Wall Stickers and Mr 5 absolutely loves that he has superheroes on his wall now.

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Flogging my blog with Grace.  Also linking up with Things I Know with Help!! I’m Stuck!!