Friday, October 30, 2015

9 Things I Learned From My First Week On Periscope

If you've been hanging around these parts for any length of time, you may have noticed me blabbing about something called #CreateOScope over the last week. For seven days, I did my first ever live broadcasts all about staying creative and finding inspiration. Just to clarify, this wasn't my first Periscope rodeo. My husband and I logged on one night randomly about a month ago to sing Shania Twain songs to strangers and giggle about how weird the world is. But I wouldn't really count that, so let's say #CreateOScope was my first time using the platform in any sort of intentional way.

That being said, I learned a lot about the wonderful world of scoping this week, and I'm not going to lie, I learned a lot about myself too. Here's what I gathered...

Periscope is TERRIFYING.

When you first start your broadcast, there are about 10 seconds there in which you wait with bated breath for people to join. In those ten seconds, your entire life flashes before your eyes. You start to remember every insecure vignette from your life -- the time your dad forgot to pick you up from softball practice, that day on the playground when your crush told you that your corduroy overalls looked like poop. And for those brief ten seconds, the frightening idea that maybe no one will show up, that maybe no one cares that you want to talk about Morning Pages -- that feeling washes over you like a tepid shower.

Periscope is NOT THAT BIG OF A DEAL.

But then people sign on. Lots of them actually. Most of them are from Russia, but whatever, they are there. Periscope has a location function where you can search for live broadcasts on a map. I think that's how most people found me this week, but MY people were there because I posted a schedule on my blog and I shared all of my broadcasts on Twitter. In fact, there wasn't a single broadcast I did where I wasn't pleasantly surprised by the number of people who joined.

That said, if you are waiting to get on Periscope because you are scared that no one will show up, don't sweat it. People will show up. God knows why, but they will.

Periscope is FUN.

On this blog, I always love seeing your comments about the weird stuff I'm writing about. But what I really love about Periscope is the ability to see LIVE comments. I speak, you speak. That's how it works -- like an actual conversation. In my first ever scope, it immediately put me at ease to see people I knew hanging out in the chat sending me their support. Plus, I just loved creating a dialogue with folks. I would say "Can I get an amen?" and people who actually respond, "Amen." It was nice.

Oh, and hearts. On Periscope, to show your approval, you tap the screen and it sends up a heart. Hearts are pretty.

Periscope is DISTRACTING.

Love the hearts, love the comments, but good LAWD, it's so hard to focus. Every day, I would come with ideas to talk about, but watching folks sign on and reading through comments and seeing a bunch of hearts floating on the screen made those first few days feel like the ultimate lesson in multitasking. However, as I continued, I felt like I got a better sense of when to engage and when not to. Plus, I also watched a ton of other scopes from more seasoned professionals, and it turns out that honestly everyone is distracted. Everyone stops themselves mid-sentence to answer the really thoughtful comments and questions. It's just the nature of the platform, and in a way, I really like that.

Periscope is FULL OF CREEPS.

Just like any social hub of the Internet, Periscope has a troll problem. There I would be, discussing things of varying degrees of importance when suddenly some bro would comment asking me to take my clothes off. I see this happen to EVERY single girl on Periscope. And my question is, what is going through these guys' brains? I'll never understand. But fortunately, Periscope makes it really easy to block people. And honestly, I was fairly liberal with my blocks this last week.

Periscope is GLITCHY.

Ugh. Guys, I don't know if Periscope is going to be my forever home. There's just too many technical glitches. There was not a single scope this week in which there wasn't some major connection problem. Fortunately, in the replays, the glitches just look like quick edits, but I'm sure it was rough for the people watching live. Sorry, y'all. If I could count on Periscope, it would be my new best friend, but I honestly just can't. Be a better friend, Peri.

And now for things I learned about myself:

I play with my hair A LOT.

Feel no need to confirm or deny whether you noticed me doing this on Periscope this week. I am certain that it was the case. I rewatched a couple of my scopes, and I could barely get through them for how much I was playing with my hair. Literally, this was me the entire time:

I will work on it.

I do not recognize my own voice.

You know how your voice sounds different in your own head than it actually does to everyone else because, I don't know, science? Well, man, I wish you could hear the voice that I hear. She's got this throaty quality, sort of like Kirstie Alley or Roz from Frasier. But this week, when I went back and watched a couple of my scopes, I was like -- hold up, who is that? In actuality, my voice is a bit more sing-songy, youthful, and nasally -- less Roz and more Stephanie from Full House, I must say. I mean, I'm cool with it, but I'm fairly sure that I should never pursue a career in voiceover work.

I really enjoy this sort of thing.

One of the reasons I decided to devote this week to talking about creative inspiration is because, well, that's something I really care about. In my life as a creative, I've often struggled to find the balance between standing out and selling out. As a blogger and a writer, it is so tempting to pursue things that will drive you to success even if those things start to chip away at your creative instincts. So over the years, I've made it somewhat of a mission to immerse myself in lots of different creative experiences. Whether that's through reading or traveling or taking improv classes, I'm all about feeding my "inner artist" (and using kooky phrases like "inner artist"). This week, I loved being able to share my experiences with you guys, and I hope to do a lot more of that as we move along.

And actually, I'm going to start that process right now. I've created a short workbook called Your Dreams Aren't Dumb. It's all about reconnecting with your heart's desires -- the ones you had growing up and the ones that you still have in the back of your mind, even if no one else knows about them but you. If you've been delaying your big life goals for any reason -- be it a lack of confidence, a lack of support, or just plain fear -- I want to help you get psyched about your dreams again. Because, by the way, your dreams aren't dumb.

So to grab your FREE download of this workbook, click the button below. As you go through it, I'd love to hear all about your big, beautiful dreams and what you're doing to achieve them (Tweet at me! I mean, why the hell not?).

In conclusion, Periscope was a blast, and thanks to all of those who joined me on this ridiculous week of scoping. On my final day of #CreateOScope, I shared some announcements about a few changes that will be going down around these parts in the next few months. I want to devote a full blog post to all of that, but if you want to get a jump on that knowledge, you're welcome to check out the two most recent recordings of my broadcasts here (and yes, there's two of them because Periscope was being so glitchy that I had to restart. Bluh.)

Have you used Periscope? What's your take?


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  2. So random....when I was little I made my own radio shows. I would record me talking like I was a DJ and then go to a song that I'd recorded off the actual radio. It was cute. In one of them, I commented that after listening back to the recordings I thought I sounded like none other than Stephanie Tanner from Full House!!! I can't believe I wasn't the only one! I was a little obsessed with my own voice after that.

    1. Lol! I am so happy to find someone else who shares my bizarrely specific Stephanie Tanner voice. Plus, I love that you made your own radio shows. So creative :)

  3. Periscope kind of freaks me out. I've never liked public speaking and it reminds me of that. I love to watch other bloggers' scopes but I've only done one Scope myself and I don't think I'll be doing another anytime soon.

    1. It scared me to death at first too! But as I've done it more and more, that fear has kind of subsided. If you do another one, let me know! I'd be happy to be in your audience :)


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