Happy new year!

It has been almost a year since I began looking at personal development, and I’d like to give a quick review of some of the stuff I’ve done and what I’m looking forward to in the next year.

I’d like to have a go at breaking my posts down to smaller chunks, so I’ll post this in segments.

My path of personal development began at the start of 2009, when I entered into a course at work to develop product creation and selling skills. This was called “Dragons Apprentice”, a mixture of 2 closely related BBC TV programmes: Dragons Den and The Apprentice. Would you ever have guessed? :) Unfortunately due to other work commitments I had to leave the course early but it left me hungry for more. This led me to look at my personal communication skills and think more about my effectiveness when talking to other people and to get over my nerves when speaking publicly. Since joining Toastmasters in March 2009, things have snowballed with various topics, including blogging, volunteering and looking at my own beliefs of my existence.

I’ll go for a topic per post. Topics I have so far are:

  • Blog
  • Mind set – Beliefs
  • Communication skills – Toastmasters
  • Health
  • Work-life
  • Life – major events

Ill try to make a post out of each topic.

Blog

I started this blog in February 2009 and I am glad to say that it is something I have benefited from, though not in the ways I expected.

As far as the technical side goes, I found it very interesting to begin the process of signing up for a domain, and uploading the software to get WordPress blog software online, and tinkering with all the settings to get something which aligned to the vision which I was aiming for. I even had a go at creating my own php code for the archive page which was interesting as this was the first web-based programming I’d ever done. I’ve posted the code here (http://www.martinogg.com/2009/06/article-archive-page-added-add-your-own-archive-page-easily-code-included/)

Unfortunately this site didnt turn into the mass traffic hub I thought it would. In fact if I look at the statistics I would see less than 10 hits per week and of them I assume most are bots, considering the amount of spam that comes in. I’ve manged the hefty sum of £6 from google adsense clicks, which is still too low for me to take out! So as far as attaining recognition and making money from this venture is concerned, its been a complete failure.

But positive results have come in unexpected places. Because I took the time to set up and continue doing blogging, it has made me more aware of other people’s blogs and writing. I now find myself reading and replying to posts made by others whereas I would otherwise have just skipped over them or not replied before. The result is I have read more about different opinions and this has opened me up to other thoughts I would never have previously considered.

I made some heavy claims in the blog at the start, about how this would be the saviour for everyone who read it and how I would post almost every day! Maybe it was a bit overzealous to make these claims but making these outrageous claims and seeing the result has allowed me to reform what I can reasonably achieve and what I can aim for.

The blog has taken on a new platform in my mind. Instead of being the soap box that I can proclaim that the world is flat, it is more of an access point for people to connect to my thoughts if they choose to. I dont take offence that it appears that not maybe people choose to do that, as my skills to do this still need to be more refined. It shows me that I need to work on my visions on life and the ability to articulate my views in a way that aligns to others.

Aims for the blog in 2010 would be to blog more often! A reasonable amount would be to blog at least once a week.

I’d like also to work on the technical skills behind the blog and keep up with other communication technologies. For example, I have a facebook which I use for my friends, but I dont use twitter. I would also like to spend more time communicating online with people in the field of personal development.

To be continued…

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