I have been feeling completely and totally overwhelmed lately.  I need more time.  An extra hour a day would be fab.

Why?  Trying to keep up with the amount of information I need to be taking in.  The amount of information that gets shared in a 10 minute period on Twitter is (gulp!) amazing.  I’m embarrassed to say how much time I spend on Facebook.  And, then there is my stack of books…

The stack of books on my nightstand keeps growing.  I just finished Trust Agents by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith.  I’ve read Open Community by Lindy Dreyer and Maddie Grant.  I’m in the middle of The Networked Nonprofit by Beth Kantor and Allison Fine.  Waiting to be read on my nightstand:  Waiting for Superman by Karl Weber, Poke the Box by Seth Godin, The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuk, Enchantment:  The Art of Changing Hearts, Mind and Actions by Guy Kawasaki.

I’m constantly reading something, trying to keep up, trying to find a focus and well, I’m overwhelmed and stuck.

When I read Scott Stratten’s Unmarketing.  Stop Marketing. Start Engaging, I laughed out loud I can’t tell you how many times and I realized that I already engage and listen to people on a higher level nearly every day.  To connect with people is in my blood.  It’s who I am.  Let me be clear though, I’m not saying his book wasn’t worth reading.  It was worth every single minute.  It taught me that I have taken for granted these interpersonal skills I was blessed with, that there are many, many people out there who struggle with how to talk or interact with others.    It also gave me the courage to go talk to Scott after hearing him talk in St. Louis.  I’m not an overly religious person, but there were times I felt like crying out “Hallelujah” while he was talking.  I thought that might seem odd, so I opted for shaking his hand and telling him thanks.

Twitter has been an amazing source of resources and knowledge for me too.  I have tweeted with local (I call them celebrities!) like David Siteman Garland (you can find him at The Rise To the Top), Chris Reimer (Rizzo Tees) and Scott Ginsberg (Hello My Name is Scott).  David does an amazing job with video blogging and has interviewed some amazing guests.  I have made him my official 1/2 marathon training partner because I often listen to the interviews as I’m running.  He pushes me to think about starting my own business.  Chris has an awesome story going from a CFO at a nonprofit organization to a Social Media rockstar at Falk Harrison and in his “spare” time blogging and selling t-shirts at Rizzo Tees.  I connect with Chris because I am in nonprofit work and often think about switching up my career.  Chris showed me that anything is possible.  Scott Ginsberg is my daily dose of inspiration.  If you don’t follow him (or David or Chris) on Twitter – you should.  Scott’s recent tweet “If you want to follow your heart, start by creating the necessary space to hear what it whispers to you” stays with me at all times.

Why am I telling you all of this?  Because each of those people are doing what they love.  It’s obvious they work really, really hard.  I’m sure they eat, sleep and drink their work.  It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in, what matters is that you’re passionate.  Part of my internal struggle is that I am passionate about many causes and many people and I’m not sure where I go with that.  I know in my soul that I need to help people do bigger and better things.  I want to inspire people to create change and to make a difference.

Have you ever had something happen to you or witnessed something that caused you to really look at your life and question what you’re doing?  I think my big one was September 11th.  Then, it was Katrina.  Today it’s Japan.  Three  devastating tragedies.   How sad that it takes something like that to see everyone come together for the same cause.

Can’t we look at issues like failing public schools, homelessness, immigration and see that it’s not a Democrat or Republican thing.  It is a human being thing.  Have our “leaders” been “leading” for so long that they aren’t sure what’s really happening any more?  Are they so far removed from the real situation that they can’t help anymore?  You know what?  It makes me tired.

Tired of the feeling that nothing is getting done.  Tired of everyone just talking.  Tired of everyone pointing fingers at the other side.  How long are we going to keep talking?  And at what price?  Instead of holding out so that you can be right, can’t we agree that no matter what the problem is, it’s not a one size fits all answer?  But rather than not getting anything done, let’s get something done.

Taking Care of a Friend (Age 3)

Taking Care of a Friend

I’ve been working in a nonprofit for 10 years.  I believe that more and more people are going to be depending on nonprofits for their services.  Where do I fit in?  What can I do?  I want to inspire people to action.  I want your group, no matter the size, to know that they can make a difference.  I want to encourage grassroots efforts because sometimes, that’s what it takes to get things done.  I want to connect with my clients on a deep and personal level.  I want them to not be afraid to think big.  I want to help them think outside the box.

Because frankly, some of the boxes we’re in are getting crowded.