#Microsoft365 #Office365 I actually can’t believe it’s that time again. I’ve made it… phew. Again I would love to share with you why I do these crazy things, and what I’ve learnt from it. The short answer is, why the hell not – #Microsoft is amazing!!!! For the long, complicated answer, read the blog:
Disclaimer: This is NOT a 5 minute read. Get coffee, champagne or a beer. Put your feet up.
From 1 March 2016 to 28 February 2017 I wrote a blog, every single day about Office 365. On the 25th of July I started again with Microsoft 365. I finished the 365th post on the 24th of July 2018. I wrote about everything I loved in Microsoft. Shared my learning journey and tried to help people with the tips and tricks I thought could help them be better ‘than they were the day before’.
I used WordPress to create written blogs with screenshots and towards the end I started publishing videos on YouTube. I’d written a Microsoft Flow to monitor YouTube and then cross-publish it to WordPress as a written post including a video. These then get published to Twitter, LinkedIn and FaceBook.
- Learning: For me to remember things, I’ve realized that I learn better when I write it down and try it out. I started writing blogs as I had this “digital space” where I could make notes and find them again. Yeah, #OneNote wasn’t known to me then, and I’m glad I didn’t keep it to myself.
- Sharing: At first I just did recaps of conferences, to share my experience with others. I never thought I had much to share (apart from that) – as all the info was out there already, and I was sure everyone knew what I was learning already. Being a trainer made me realize how much of the “every day stuff” still had to be learnt by so many. #LearningThroughSharing The more you give away, the more you’ll have. Always remember that what you have already forgotten, others still have to learn. Don’t ‘NOT’ share something, because you think it’s been shared or said before. Remember : 7.5 billion people in the world need to learn.
- Reusability: Instead of showing something to one person, I could blog it and then keep on showing it to people (through sharing a URL).
- Training: Most companies are not prepared to invest in training. Too expensive they say. I suggest you read this blog of mine on the ROI on Training. So I decided to create ‘free training material’ to reach as many people as possible, that did not have the privilege to get trained.
- Digital Literacy: I have a lot to say about this, so many people are scared that they’ll be replaced by ‘robots’. And they will be, if we don’t help them evolve as well. Everything around us has evolved – except us. I focus a lot on the soft & digital skills we need as well, as technology on its own won’t fix things. I’m also very interested in ‘the psychology’ behind learning and this blog has given me the platform to discuss these things, so dear to my heart. To learn new things, we first have to un-learn the old bad habits. and Stop selling #Office365 Driver’s Licenses to people who can’t drive (yet) will give you some insights into this and more resources.
- New stuff: New updates and features are released daily, and most people don’t even realize this. I tried my best to stay up to date and try out the new features. Then I shared it. Thank you #Microsoft for giving me so much to love and talk about.
- Reprogramming my brain: I’ve had an interesting, tough and sad life. Tried to commit suicide and failed, thankfully (see, failing isn’t always a bad thing). Eventually when I lost my fiance 8 years ago in a motorcycle accident, I decided to start focusing on only the good stuff (my Business name is The Guid Stuff btw). When you make a point to focus on the good, no matter what happens, you end up only seeing the good. Having a challenge that forced me to look for something cool to share daily, helped me in this process. There’s a lot of sadness and ugly in the world, we can’t always change it – your outlook and perspective however does change everything.
What I’ve learnt from this:
It gets easier: I’ve published close to 850 blogs across different mediums, I was raised Afrikaans and I’m happy to say that with every blog I wrote, I became better at it. Used better words, grammar and became more “eloquent” if you could ever call it that 😊. In the beginning I wouldn’t do videos. Darrell Webster motivated me to start. I’ve recorded over 200 videos for YouTube, some of them in my Superman Onesie, drinking champagne. In some videos I snort while laughing and sometimes accidentally swear. All because I’ve become so comfortable doing it. Don’t ever stop trying, and remember that getting better doesn’t happen overnight. Always strive to just be better than you were yesterday.
Microsoft Office: In the beginning I focused on writing about SharePoint and the more technical stuff. Then realized that a lot of people weren’t even using their own PC’s ‘right’. Before we add technical training for SharePoint / Teams / Flow etc. we need to ensure that people are indeed comfortable and efficient in the environments they’ve had for years. That would be Windows and Microsoft Office. You have NO IDEA how amazing Office is. I mean really. The stuff you can do in #MicrosoftOffice is truly mind-blowing, especially now with #Office365.
Set Goals for Yourself: For the first challenge I said that I would publish a blog, every single day for 365 days. And I made it.
For the second challenge (I got lazy) and said that it would still be 365 blogs for the year, but if I sometimes missed one, I could catch up with 2 on another day. You know what happened? Before I realized I was 122 blogs behind and had to start publishing 3 to 4 videos a day to catch up. I still stepped up and stuck to my challenge and made it. Lesson – lower your standards and you lower your expectations. Just don’t.
I’m not great with mathematics, but the blog by James Clear on Continuous Improvement is pretty cool. He says that you’ll improve 38% by improving 1% per day over a year. I’ll just keep telling myself (picture on the right) that it’s a 365% improvement 🙂
Help and promote others: There are so many amazing people out there, never stop promoting them and putting focus on their content. This isn’t about you in the end. It’s about helping people. There’s a place in the sun for all of this, let’s scoot over and make place for someone else and if necessary, hold their hand for a bit while walking a section of the road with them. If you really want to help people, you shouldn’t be visible. Stand behind them in the shadows and make them shine and be the stars they were always supposed to be.
(You’ll see I’m a big fan of Hugh Macleod. Thank you for inspiring me Hugh.)
Ikigai: For years I felt I didn’t have balance in my life, that I didn’t have a purpose and I think it’s because of my low self esteem. #Ikigai is something very important to me in life. 3 Years ago I kinda grew up and admitted something to myself. I decided that I was good at what I did. I based this on the feedback I got from my blogs, my clients. peers and speaking at conferences. Once I admitted this, I looked at the Ikigai venn diagram and realized that I had it all. I had achieved balance in my life, I had purpose. I immediately went and bought a Ducati Monster 696 as a gift to myself when I turned 40, and called her #Ikigai. To remind me of how blessed I am. Don’t make a mistake, I still have days where I think I totally suck and I’m useless, that’s only human, but awareness is a gift I received, which reminds me that some of it might be in my head, and that it was necessary to receive ‘external feedback’ to correct this skewed image. I also need to thank a lady called Ann Lamprecht, who walked a path with me, and helped me find myself. Thank you Ann, I will always be grateful for what you did for me, love you past the moon and back.
Community: Is everything. I’ve learnt so much from those around me and I’m incredibly thankful for that. Don’t ever forget that you are a part of something bigger and that all those parts (of others) make you who you are.
This brings me to #RE365 or @Regarding365. Thank you for being my community family. There’s nothing better than belonging to something bigger and you give that to me. Thank you for my ‘surprise’ online session last week when I finished the challenge. You guys & galls are amazing! Watch this video and you’ll understand how crazy and passionate we are:
Then a very special BIG thank you to Luise Freese who did this #sketchnote for me about my journey. We met a couple of months ago in Mainz, Germany and have become friends. You’re a very special girl with a great talent Luise, I am so happy and honored to know you and call you a friend. And congratulations on being the Chief Community Sketcher at #MSIgnite in September this year. I’m so glad I got this #sketchnote before you get all famous and super busy 🙂
I need to see the sun more, live a little, ride my bike. So I reckon seeing as that I’m so passionate about helping people, I’ll start a 365 Hour Outreach. That’s 12.5 days. So a couple of times a year I’d like to rent a motorcycle in a new country, and for 12.5 days travel to schools, colleges, less fortunate areas, communities, businesses and bring them the good news of #Microsoft365, through free awareness campaigns and training. Reach out if you interested on getting involved, contact me through my website or DM me on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.
To be fair, I think I should start this in South Africa, so let’s see what happens. How about it #KTM & #Microsoft – you wanna sponsor one of your biggest fans? Watch this space…
In closing: Thank you, Microsoft, Followers, #MVPBuzz, #RE365, Friends & Family, for your support, love, feedback & inspiring me by giving me the opportunities to love what I do and share it with the world. You’re the axis my #Ikigai runs on.
“You can also find me contributing to REgarding 365. I’m a member of a group of enthusiasts, sharing their stories, thoughts and opinions about Microsoft 365. Catch us at https://regarding365.com | @regarding365 on Twitter and regarding365 on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/regarding365 ”
Disclaimer: I create content about Office / Microsoft 365. Content is accurate at time of publication, however updates and new additions happen daily which could change the accuracy or relevance. Please keep this in mind when using my blogs as guidelines.