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My Missing Gravatar

Last week Beth Hewitt shared some tips on setting up your gravatar in her post Gravatars and Signatures – ABC of Building Your Brand and used my site in her training video. My first thought was – “Oh no! I’m going to be so embarrassed. Everyone will see my site where I don’t even have my own gravatar!” Of course, Beth is not like that. Go watch how graciously she avoided it and focused simply on the how tos. (And thanks, Beth, for using my site as your example!)

So I guess I have to embarrass myself

Beth’s post got me thinking about why I didn’t have a gravatar. I looked back and thought – “Oh my word! It’s been so long since I even responded to comments!” Why? (I know you’re wondering) Because someone told me that the gravatar doesn’t show up unless it’s in place when you post the comment or respond. So I decided to wait a couple of days to respond and get my gravatar set up.

Watch how the procrastination bug slipped in

So one week went by. I’ll get it next week. Then another week slipped by…and another…until the gravatar and the responses were a thought pushed to the back of my mind. Alright Teresa – time to apply what you teach to your own life.

Self evaluation at work

I took a look inside to figure things out. The response delay was easy. It was relatively new and fresh in my mind why I had procrastinated. But the gravatar – what was up with that…

First – the technology. It seemed so hard  – thinking about going to a new site, figuring out the steps. Aaugh! Horror! Trauma! Seems I was being pretty silly with that, doesn’t it? But sometimes the unknown looks bigger than it really is. (Big hint here for you when you’re looking at anything holding you back.) Beth’s video solved that problem, and I felt like a complete idiot because she makes it all look so simple in her video.

Second – the photo. Why had I never gotten around to making a new one that I liked? (Really big hint here. Check out that last part ‘that I liked’ which I already knew about myself.) Here’s where I had to search a little deeper for the answer. Why didn’t I like most of the photos of myself? I pulled out a few that I do like trying to understand this. Take a look.

This one was taken last weekend when I went to visit my husband in Philly. He was transferred there a couple of months ago, and it was the first time we’d gotten together. Key things to note: I hadn’t slept in over 24 hours – too excited to sleep the night before. My eyes are red from happy tears – I cried when he hugged me at the airport. My hair – what? Did I leave my comb in Vegas or was I just too tired to remember my hair before Ed snapped the shot? (The hint is in the last sentence there.)

Aaah – a vacation shot in Victoria, BC. We stopped there for the weekend after a long week of little sleep and busy preparation for an absolutely beautiful wedding for one of the girls. See how relaxed I look. Trust me – it was closer to a coma of exhaustion.

This last one was over 20 years ago (in case the pouffy, 80s hairstyle didn’t give it away). This photo shoot had gone on for over two hours including three changes of clothes and three hairstyles changes. This is about shot number 74. I was getting bored and getting tired of trying to smile and look nice. How do professional models do that all day long?

So did you pick up on all the clues?

Here’s your last hint – when I was a kid my mom talked a lot about how she wasn’t very photogenic – “I never take good pictures!” Can’t tell you how many times she said that every time a camera showed up on the scene. I guess I picked it up. I realized through this little evaluation I am overly self-conscious about how I will look in any picture.

My answer for my gravatar!!

In all of the pictures I’ve shared I was too tired or bored to care what I looked like. So – I’m going to work really hard for a week on a big project, stay up for at least 24 hours and then take 75 pictures. One of them will have to be okay! Don’t ya think?!

No seriously – just realizing that I need to relax and let go of the result is a huge step. I’ve got it on my schedule this week to set up the tripod and snap a few self portraits. You’ll be seeing one of them soon as my new gravatar.

My goal with this post was to give you three insights:

1. If you’re procrastinating or generally not moving forward in something you want to do – there’s a reason. And it’s not lack of self-discipline!

2. A little self-evaluation can go a long way. Look back at where you were successful (in my case, photos I liked) for clues.

3. Take a look at old beliefs and feelings you have about yourself. They’re not always serving you well. This one can be a little harder. Ask someone to help – a friend or a professional.

Hope this helps! Let me know what you think in a comment.

Update 04/23/10: Found my gravatar! One of my daughters called while I was taking pictures, and I just kept shooting.  She was distracting me from too much focus on  myself and making me laugh. Besides I was getting tired of taking pictures and wanted to focus on talking to her. This was the last one I took and the one my son liked best. Maybe there really is something to that being tired and bored.

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29 Responses to My Missing Gravatar

  1. Teresa this is so funny – I laughed when I read this! I can totally identify with this – It took me 14 takes to do my welcome video on my blog! Then I finally decided – Jan get over yourself – nobody cares that much! You are a beautiful woman – just put a picture up! Hugs to you!
    Jan Hill´s last blog ..Patient Relationship Marketing

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Glad you enjoyed it, Jan! I feel your pain with your video – I haven’t even gotten to that yet! When I do I’ll see if I can keep it down to 14 takes for mine. I stopped by your blog to see it by the way. It was great!

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  2. Teresa – You are a beautiful woman. I think you need to address those words mom told you that still has a strong impact on you and visualize it as a moldy log like we talked about.
    Put it away where it belongs. It Does Not belong in your life now. And I predict you won’t need 74 shots….twenty something. Use your intuition like you did before and pick the photo.
    I “Know” you can do it! While choosing which one, pretend you are a stranger looking for help. Those compassionate and loving eyes of yours will be the key to the correct picture.
    It’s a win win! Good luck with it. I enjoyed speaking to you. Donna
    Donna Merrill´s last blog ..Take Action NoW! Don’t be a spectator of Online Marketing.

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Thanks, Donna! What’s really funny is my mom was talking about herself!! I just internalized it for some reason. Great ideas for choosing a photo! Thanks again.

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  3. Hey Teresa,

    Gosh did this post resonate for me, big time!
    I had the same procrastination when it came to Google Analytics. I thought oh no, another tutorial to watch, I’ll do it next week…
    Well next week came and went and so did next month.
    10 whole months later I had it installed!
    And guess what one of my tasks is for today? To install Analytics onto a new blog lol.

    So thanks to your wonderful reminder, I WILL get it done today :)

    Michaelé
    Michaelé Harrington´s last blog ..Are MLM Replicated Websites Effective At Growing Your Business?

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Hi, Michaele! We all stall out in our own way, don’t we. It’s nudging each other along the path that gets us there together for the big ‘we did it’ celebration. Can’t wait to see your new blog!

    [Reply]

  4. Teresa,

    Oh, the procrastination bug is brutal isn’t it? I too struggle with this (especially around tax time!) & am now working on moving forward on a business idea that I have been too scared to do anything with thus making up other things to do just to busy myself & avoid starting!
    You will not have to take a ton of photos for your gravatar, just be your beautiful self & don’t “try” to look a certain way. That way you can fall into Being 100% YOU!

    Take care,
    Becca
    Becca´s last blog ..Express Yourself!

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Hi Becca,
    We all seem to catch that bug once in a while. I want to hear about your business idea! That’s a scary one for a lot of us, but you’ll get it…with a little help from your friends. Let me know what I can do!

    [Reply]

  5. That darn old procrastination bug can hit us all! You are winning cause you have acknowledged the fact. Now to action! You are doing great Teresa.

    I look forward to watching your progress,
    Val
    Val Wilcox´s last blog ..How Many Rocks Are in Your Backpack?

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Hi Val,
    A silly thing to have trouble taking action on. I was thinking after taking the pictures today that I can stand up and speak in front of hundreds of people without any problem, but a little camera makes me nervous! To each his own – even in procrastination!

    [Reply]

  6. Brilliant! Like Jan I take toooo many times to do a video. I’ve almost reached the point of I don’t care just do it and live with it. Its funny that it’s only us that look at ourselves and think it can improve or needs to be better.

    Not bad in trying to improve all the time, but there is definitely more power in the doing.

    Ready ==> FIRE ==> Aim!!!
    George Fourie´s last blog ..MLM Companies in Review: MLM Attorney Kevin Thompson Shares His Insight Into The Amway Class Action Case

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Good point, George! There is that law of diminishing returns where one more try won’t improve it enough for it to be worth the extra time we’re spending on it.

    [Reply]

  7. Teresa,
    I really enjoyed how open you were about something that can be very personal. It’s lets us know that you are a Real Person.

    I, like you, and probably everyone else on the planet can find something to procrastinate about. Whenever I take a closer look it usually has to do with the fact that whatever it is, I’m uncomfortable with something about it. we all have our paths to walk and hills to climb.

    Thanks for sharing this with us.
    Don Enck´s last blog ..The iPad…Is This The Future Of Computer Technology?

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Well thanks, Don! You hit the nail right on the head – it’s that closer look and discovering what it is we’re uncomfortable about that is the secret to getting over that hill.

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  8. Teresa, I feel the same way as you, I do not like taking pictures and so I avoid it but I do need to take another one to upgrade on my website and my video camera when my computer crashed and I still have not uploaded it back on it. I keep procrastinating about that because I still have not reached my comfort level shooting videos, but after reading this post I am going to take more pictures and set up my camera and shoot some videos. Thanks for the boost!

    Lori
    Lori Robertson´s last blog ..How To Find Happiness Within Yourself

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    You’re welcome, Lori! We have to all stick together to encourage each other to move ahead!

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  9. Hey Teresa,

    You don’t look tired or bored in any of your pictures you look radiant. I totally Understand the picture feeling. Until about 5 years ago I don’t think I had a decent picture. I was so concerned with how I looked. When my daughter came a long, I found out about not having enough time to be neat and tidy and make-up immaculate all the time.

    As I started to relax, not taking as much effort in my appearance, going to the shop without make-up on…the nicer pictures started to emerge. Funny that!!

    I am glad you didn’t mind being the subject of my blog, my only intention was to get you some more exposure and maybe jolt you in to getting your gravatar up!!…My intuition was telling me that it would turn out good hehe!!

    So glad you took action straight away…I suffer from procrastination sometimes and things are never has hard as we think they will be. We just have to get going sometimes. There is always someone out there to help us, especially in this blogosphere!

    Oh and I must say I love the 80′s glamour-puss look, I love the eighties!!

    Beth :-)
    Beth Hewitt´s last blog ..De-Cluttering for Clarity

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Thanks for your help, Beth! It worked!!! And you inspired a post that was fun for me to write!

    [Reply]

  10. I love this post. It shows us who you really are. Finding your gravatar let you do some really good internal searching and it seems as though you came up with some great points.

    You let your guard down and all the beauty came easily flowing out.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Scott

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Thanks for your kind words, Scott. You’re right – it’s the real me. Spots and all!

    [Reply]

  11. I’m notorious for not wanting to take photos. I actually have very few photos of myself. Trust me, I hear this from my mother all the time. =)

    Not to mention jumping on video. Like George said, it was the hardest thing for me to do. I would do 25 takes before I would put something out there. Then I realized how much of a waste of time that was. lol

    Thanks for sharing Teresa.

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Hi, Glenn! You and George have already convinced me that my future videos will have to be a one shot thing. It will be nice to work on getting over it now BEFORE I start the camera rolling!

    [Reply]

  12. This is great Teresa!

    I’m glad you found one that you liked.

    Also a good lesson to be learned here… I like your style. :)

    Justin
    Justin Glover´s last blog ..What Is The Best Internet Business Model To Have?

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    Thanks, Justin! I always appreciate your support!

    [Reply]

  13. I liked the part about procrastination. That rings true for so many people in the “work from home” arena. I appreciate you taking the time to write this particular post.
    Clint White´s last blog ..Phone Etiquette For Your MLM Business

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    You’re so right, Clint! It’s easy to procrastinate when there’s no boss but yourself!

    [Reply]

  14. [...] must dos, they all drain the energy you need for success. Today’s post is a follow up to My Missing Gravatar where mentioned why I hadn’t responded to posts for way too long. It wasn’t until last night, I [...]

  15. Teresa,

    What a BEAUTY you are! YES!
    Thank you for sharing yourself with us.
    I felt similar when I realized I don’t have my gravatar.
    But then, I did it.
    It feels so great when we just go and do it!
    Thanks for being in my world!
    Gratefully,
    Venus :)
    Venus :) ´s last blog ..Who Are You Really? (part 3)

    [Reply]

    Teresa Reply:

    And thank you for being in my world! You’re right – it feels great to get things off the list and into action!

    [Reply]

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