Birthday Wishes: A Year in Review

53186209_300e54f4e7 This weekend, I spent some time offline contemplating the direction of my personal and professional lives. Have you seen the movie, Julie and Julia? I was sucked into the flick this weekend and it got me thinking about what my driving force would be for the next year. Like Julie (before her cooking experience), I feel a bit lost and the looming depression of my last year in my twenties is a bit overwhelming. I am seeking purpose and direction.

When I began this blog almost four years ago, there were not many public relations professionals in the social media space. The conversation was limited to a close knit group of individuals. Today, the conversation has grown by leaps and bounds and public relations professionals/communicators online are a dime a dozen. In the beginning, I had a purpose and discipline outlined for blogging. I was fleshing out my masters thesis and developing a twelve step program for communicators, as well as, documenting my APR experience. When I completed my thesis, I continued to write about public relations issues and what it meant to be a communicator in the digital age. Now that there are so many of my peers in the space, I am questioning what value I am adding to the overall discussion.

In my previous position as a community manager in the federal government, it was easy to find separation about the topics I wrote about on my personal blog versus the company voice. Now, in my role as community manager for Radian6, I have found such separation is much more difficult because I am addressing many of the same social media issues and communication principles in the Radian6 content that I was addressing on this blog. I do not want to end my time on this blog because I enjoy the discipline and outlet personal blogging has offered. Where does that lead me?

Like Julie, I am cooking up a plan for 2010 to keep me motivated, my mind sharp and my writing disciplined. I am inspired by my dear friend, Geoff Livingston, who has branched out and found his motivation in tackling the social good arena. I am seeking such inspiration where I can leverage and expand my talents while learning from new experiences. So, I am asking you, my readers and friends, what would you like me to sink my teeth into in the coming year?

(Photo courtesy frazzipants.)

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  • Richie Escovedo

    Lauren: First off, thank you for making the time to write your blog. I have come to enjoy your theories, discussions, rants, wit, and knowledge. I look forward to what you have in store for us next.
    As a possible idea for posts, would you consider writing on community management for PR professionals? I have seen first-hand when organizations (my own included) have come to expect the PR person or team to take the reigns for community development, discussion, and disclosure. From internal to external networks both online and offline. I think this might be an area of interest. I know I will be exploring these things myself. Cheers.
    - @vedo

  • Lauren Vargas

    Great topic! More and more pr peeps are evolving into this role. I will definitely address.