Virtual meets

Keys to meetings. ©iStockphoto/vaeenma

Keys to meetings. ©iStockphoto/vaeenma

There may be times when you want or need to have a conversation with someone. Maybe that someone is a key element in your story. Maybe the individual has first hand knowledge of the event as an outsider. Possibly it is someone with whom you want to exchange creative thought. Face-to-face meets are always the best. When that isn’t possible because of location, there is another option.

Late 2013, a gifted creative friend suggested we meet to exchange thoughts on our individual projects. I thought it was a great idea. So, early 2014 we met on Skype for a couple of hours. He gave feedback on Then I gave feedback on his fictional web series. All is all it was a pleasant, helpful experience.

Want to have a meeting on Skype? Here are some suggestions:

1. Set a date, time, the parameters of the meeting, and what you hope to accomplish.

2. Prepare. In this case, I made sure I had watched the entire season of his web series.

3. List highlights of comments you hope to make in one or two words to jog your memory to give top quality feedback.

4. Follow up with an email outlining helps to you and any changes implemented due to the call.

Virtual connections can be a great asset. Remember video is involved and try to look presentable (i.e., dressed for the occasion).

Hitting 100

Celebrate! ©

Celebrate! ©

News this week spoke of an aging woman (102 now, 98 when it happened) who is facing a second-degree murder charge for killing her 100-year old roommate. Today I noticed a friend’s mother’s Facebook post of a letter a former president sent her on her 100th birthday. Later, Mom called to tell me she lunched with friends after church, one of whom brought along an elderly relative who is 100. For me it’s reminiscent of those 100s we used to fight for as school children.

“Don’t even mention being old,” I told Mom. “You’re only 90!”

There is always a lot to be thankful for, if you take the time to look. For example, I’m sitting here thinking how nice it is that wrinkles don’t hurt.



Hiding in Amsterdam to avoid persecution of the Jews in 1942-44 could not have been the easiest of experiences.

Diary. ©iStockphoto/AndrejaD

Diary. ©iStockphoto/AndrejaD

We can know what it was like for Anne Frank and her family and four others through Anne’s record of daily events in the annex of her father’s business. They were discovered in August 1944 and taken to camps. Of the Frank family, only Otto survived. When he returned, Meip Giles, who had collected Anne’s writing and family photo albums, returned them to Frank. Learning of her intent to publish a work based on her experience after the war, Otto Frank decided to publish Anne’s writings. The book was favorably received. I read it in junior high school.

Not having been one to journal my life events, Anne Frank makes me consider the possibilities. As a sharer of my life story, I am encouraged by the fact that Anne’s experience continues to make an impact on the world long after her death. However, there was no assurance Anne’s work would have been preserved or eventually published after her death. So, encouragement might come from other benefits of journaling. Maud Purcell in The Health Benefits of Journaling on indicates there is evidence that journaling impacts physical well-being positively. Both Purcell and C.M. Smith author of 6 Ways Journaling Will Change Your Life say it is a way to clarify what is happening in your life and how you really feel about it. Journaling provides us with insight into who we are which can assist in decision making.

Want to begin the practice of journaling regularly? Michael Hyatt has created a template to help jog thoughts in How to Become More Consistent in Your Daily Journaling.

I celebrated what would have been Anne Frank’s 85th birthday June 12, 2014, by seeing The Fault in Our Stars, based on the book by the same name. When Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley) and Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort), two youths who meet in a cancer support group, travel to Amsterdam to meet the author of Lancaster’s favorite book, they aren’t welcomed warmly by the author. His assistance takes them on a tour of the city including the Anne Frank Museum. Anne’s short life echoes what these two youths face; they both are likely to leave this world too early.

Whenever we leave this life, it may always feel too early. Recording our lives leaves a chance we may live on in influence in this world even after our death.