The Thanksgiving Meal – Connecting Through Food

We know that Thanksgiving Day gives us an opportunity to connect with family and friends, and one of the biggest parts of the day is the food. Sharing food is another way that we connect with each other. It technically could fall under connecting through acts of service or connecting with family, but sharing a meal together is special in its own way. Food, and especially during the holidays, isn’t just about the taste and the presentation. It’s about so much more: memories, traditions, feelings, and ambience.

Thanksgiving meal

When you serve or are served a Thanksgiving meal, what kind of feelings and emotions do you have? What kind of memories do you experience during the meal? By serving certain types of foods at Thanksgiving, the feelings of warmth and tradition bring some level of comfort to us. Our world is ever-changing and feels a bit unstable, but the simple act of sitting down together for a Thanksgiving meal with our favorite dishes can help us to feel grounded again and experience a little of the stability that we crave. Because of this, we can connect more easily with our friends and family at our table and repair or strengthen neglected relationships. The foods we all enjoy can bring us together and begin a season of peace, charity, and grace.

What are your favorite foods to share and connect over during Thanksgiving? I’ll share my simple menu for this year’s Thanksgiving meal. I tried not to overdo it this time and am sticking mostly to tradition. Find my menu with links to recipes below.

Thanksgiving Meal Menu

Appetizers:
Pumpkin Bread
Sweet Spiced Nuts

Main Dish:
Brined, roasted turkey

Thanksgiving meal

Side Dishes:
Slow Cooker Stuffing
Mashed Potatoes & Gravy
Colorful Roasted Vegetables
Cranberry-Apple Sauce
Rolls

Dessert:
German Apple Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Pumpkin Ice Cream Pie (new dessert I’m adapting & attempting)

Thanksgiving meal


I hope you all have a blessed and beautiful Thanksgiving meal, connecting over your very favorite foods. Tell me what one of your favorite Thanksgiving foods is – I’m all about mashed potatoes and gravy myself! By the way, there’s still time to sign up for my Thanksgiving PDF if you haven’t yet.

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Thanksgiving Grace

Thanksgiving Day is almost here! We know that Thanksgiving is about gratitude, but maybe this year we can make it about grace as well. If I asked for a show of hands of all those who are overly stressed out right now or who have had a difficult year, I wouldn’t be able to count them all. Let’s make this Thanksgiving less about ourselves being grateful for all our blessings and little joys (for which we ARE grateful) and more about extending a gentle grace to those around us. That includes grace for ourselves and making an effort to relax, enjoy, and not let stress overwhelm us.

Thanksgiving Grace

When I think of grace, I like to roll several parts of the definition into one. Grace is given to you and then you can share with others. And in another sense, it’s about treating others the way that you would hope others would treat you. While I talk about grace here, I mean something like this all combined into one:

Thanksgiving grace

But I also like another meaning of grace, the idea of a Grace Period – a postponement, delay, or pause. We can make Thanksgiving our Grace Period, a time set apart from the daily stresses and our issues with family and friends, and focus on how we can extend grace to those around us if even for a day or two before jumping back into the rat race with both feet.

Let’s start with giving ourselves grace! Stop setting the bar ridiculously high for yourself to have the “perfect” Thanksgiving. It’s about family, friends, food, and fun, not about fancy tablescapes, picture-perfect recipes, serving dinner on time, or acceptable behavior of children (and adults!). Learn to simplify, go with the flow, and appreciate the smaller victories of the day (like, hey I didn’t light a pie on fire this year!).

Thanksgiving

Give grace to those around you during this holiday. When we are stressed out, we are more irritable and far less tolerant of others. By making sure that we are in the right frame of mind first, we can love those around us this Thanksgiving no matter if they didn’t bring the food we asked for, showed up unexpectedly, started a political argument at the table, broke a dish, or had a bad attitude. Remember that we are all imperfect sinners. Take a deep breath, smile, and show love to your friends and family. There is beauty in the gift of grace.


I created a simple (not too fancy so I wouldn’t be too stressed out!) PDF with thoughts and tips for having a Thanksgiving with more grace and less stress. It includes thoughts on how to de-stress during Thanksgiving, 3 of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes, and tips for hosting. I wish all of you a blessed, happy, peaceful, grace-filled Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving

Keep Working on Connection

Glad to have you here for Day 31 of 31 Days of Connection! Yes, we made it to the end of the series! If you’ve missed anything, you can stop by Day 1 for links to all of the posts.

The Connection Series

Connection really is important for us human beings. The opposite is isolation and that leads to loneliness, a lack of ability to communicate effectively with family and close friends, and other issues. Some connection happens automatically because of circumstances or personality, but it usually requires being intentional. That’s why we’ve covered several different ways of connecting in this 31-day series. We’ve gone from connecting with self, family, and friends, to connecting at work, connecting through writing, and through various social media networks.

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If you haven’t had time to read through all of the posts (because sheesh – daily posts?!), this is your chance to take a breath and go back to catch up. Even if you don’t think some of the posts apply to you, check them out because you might pick up a few helpful tips that you weren’t aware of. Each post contains a daily challenge to help give you a nudge toward improving your skills. I included a handy daily connection challenge checklist for you on Day 3 to help with accountability. But lucky you – now that you made it this far I have an updated checklist for you!

Daily Connection Challenge Checklist

I’ve got the same Daily Connection Challenge Checklist, but now I have filled in all of the daily challenges for you. All you have to do is download, go through each day and mark off that you completed items or what you did to meet that challenge. The challenges listed on the checklist are shortened, simplified versions so I do recommend that you always read the full challenge on each post. Work through the challenges at your own pace, but do set a due date to give that sense of urgency to help you actually complete it.

Download the updated checklist here:

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Keep Working on Connection

You’ve completed the 31 Days of Connection and worked on the challenges, so all is well and you’re great at connecting now, right?! Probably not, but you’re certainly more aware of specific types of connection that are more difficult for you and hopefully you have connected with at least one new person or improved one relationship. So where do we go from here? Since connection requires being intentional, we need to continue to work on it and improve our relationships with others. As you find success in some forms of connection, find new ways to reach out, both personally and professionally. Our goal is never perfection, but always striving to do better than we did before and I know that if I can do it, you can too!

Day 31 Daily Connection Challenge:
Keep working on connection! After reading the series, brainstorm some additional ways that you can work on it in your own life. If you have already gone through all the daily challenges, figure out which ones were the most difficult for you and work through those again this month!


Thank you so much for being here with me to finish out Day 31 of 31 Days of Connection! What were your favorite ways to work on connection? What were the most difficult for you? Any questions or feedback? Let me know in the comments! I would love to stay connected with you – please take a moment to join my awesome group of subscribers.

Click here for links to all 31 posts of the series.

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Connect Through Public Speaking

Welcome to Day 30 of 31 Days of Connection! Find all the posts you may have missed linked up on Day 1.

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Connect Through Public Speaking

Well, if you thought putting yourself out there to connect through videos was intimidating, then public speaking may be your toughest connection challenge. Public speaking is many people’s biggest fear. There are a few oddballs like me who actually enjoy it (and yes, I lettered in Speech in high school). Whether or not you enjoy it, it’s an excellent way to connect with a group of people in a personal way. Of course, public speaking does not always have to be in front of a large group. There are plenty of opportunities to connect without it being such a formal event.

Public speaking can certainly be a planned event on a stage in front of hundreds of people, but it can take many other forms. It could happen in the form of teaching or training a smaller group of people, giving a presentation in a meeting at work, sharing your thoughts with the group in a Bible study, or something similar. You probably didn’t realize that you’ve already been doing public speaking in various forms. When you speak up in a group of people and share authentically or speak about a subject you’re passionate about, people will feel connected to you, leading to new and better relationships.

speaking

Public Speaking Tips

There are a few things to remember in order for your speaking to help you connect, no matter where you are:

Know your audience. Before you speak, it’s important to understand exactly who your audience is – age, gender, goals, why they are listening to you, etc. This will help you speak in a way that relates to your target audience and makes for a better sense of connection.

Be yourself. Don’t try to act like somebody else when you are speaking. If you are pretending or uncomfortable with what you are speaking about, that will come across to your audience. If you are thought of as phony or not credible, then you’ll turn off your audience and lose the chance to connect.

Make eye contact. Looking at the back of the room over the heads of who you are speaking might be a strategy to overcome fear, but it makes your speech less personal. Make eye contact directly with different members of your audience as you are speaking and it will feel like you are speaking to all audience members as well as the ones you’re looking at.

speaking

Smile. We’ve already talked about how a smile can bring connection. Sometimes when you’re speaking to a group, you forget to smile because you’re focused on your words. Smile before you start and remind yourself to smile a few times as you speak. It puts your audience at ease and gives them positive feelings when they smile back.

Speak confidently. Whether or not you are an expert on what you’re talking about, say it confidently. It helps you come across as more knowledgable, credible, and trustworthy. People are more likely to trust and connect with you when they feel you are comfortable with your subject matter.

No matter where you are speaking, you have an opportunity to reach out and share yourself with others. By doing this regularly, you can connect with more people and build more relationships.

Day 30 Daily Connection Challenge:
Don’t skip this one just because it’s public speaking! You don’t have to give a speech in front of a crowd, but bonus points for you if you set up a speaking opportunity for yourself. Find a way in the next 2 weeks to speak publicly in one of the many forms we talked about. Remember the tips from above and see if you can use that opportunity to make a new connection with somebody.


Thank you for being here with me on Day 30 of 31 Days of Connection! Do you have a fear of public speaking or do you enjoy it? Did you realize that there are other forms of it besides a speech in front of a crowd? Let me know in the comments! See you back here one more time for Day 31, friends!

Connecting Through Video

Welcome to Day 29 of 31 Days of Connection – almost through the series! Stop by Day 1 to find links to all the posts in the series.

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Connecting Through Video

Using video to connect with others is effective because it involves both sight and sound. Watching a video of someone speaking gives you the facial expressions, body language, voice tones, and accents that you are missing when reading text only. You can use video to connect with family, friends, and connect outside of your circle of known contacts. There are many different ways to share video online, but I’m only covering some of the main ones.

video

Connect Through Video Personally

You can connect on a more personal level in the following ways:

Use your smartphone and send video to family and friends. Our phone cameras do so much now – it’s simple to record a quick video with your phone and email or text it to a friend. It’s a way to send a message that’s a little more personal and special and doesn’t take much time or effort.

Communicate online through FaceTime, Skype, Google Hangouts, etc. Video chats and calls make it easy to meet with family and friends over the computer. Connecting live with somebody is even better than a phone call. It requires internet access on both/all ends, but other than that it’s free!

Use Facebook Live Video from your own profile to share with your Facebook friends. Facebook recently rolled out Live video on profiles – both on computers and phones. Just start a live video, record as long as you want, and it’s posted on your page. It’s only for your own Facebook friends to see and interact with. They can watch you live and comment or watch it after and comment then. It’s a fun way to share your day.

video

Connect Through Video Publicly

You can connect in a more public way using these methods:

YouTube. Record your videos with your computer or camera and then upload to your YouTube page. These are shared publicly. You can prepare, film, edit, and post the kind of videos you want, whether to build traffic, grow your brand, or just make a connection with new people through their comments and interactions online.

Video uploaded to a Facebook page. You can upload your videos to your Facebook page to share publicly. Share one that has been edited to near-perfection or share one with raw unedited everyday-life footage. Your fans can connect with you by commenting and sharing.

Facebook Live video on pages. When you do Facebook Live on your public page, it will show up on the live map as well as to all of your followers. They can interact right then by asking you questions and making comments that you can respond to while on camera. Your live video is automatically recorded and then can be seen on your Facebook page by your followers anytime and they can comment and share at that time.

Instagram Stories. Instagram stories are very short video clips that you do through your phone and post to Instagram. If your Instagram profile is set to public, then anybody who follows you will be able to see your story and comment to connect.

The more you share of yourself and your life through video, the more others feel they know about you and connect with you on a deeper level. It can be a little scary, but once you take the chance, you’ll find it easier to do the next time. Are you ready to reach out and connect today through video?

Day 29 Daily Connection Challenge:
Step out of your comfort zone and record either yourself or something happening during your day. Use whatever method of recording that’s easiest for you. Now post that video online somewhere! You could just message it to a couple of people or share it on your own Facebook profile so only your friends see it. If you’re feeling particularly brave, share your video publicly on YouTube, a Facebook page, or Instagram! Try video chatting with a friend or family member this week through a Google Hangout. If you don’t know how to use it, click here to find more info. Remember to arrange video calls ahead of time – most people don’t like to be caught off guard by having to show up live unexpectedly.


Thanks for being here with me for Day 29 of 31 Days of Connection! Have you tried connecting through video? Have you done any video calls or posted videos on Facebook? Do you have a YouTube channel? Let me know what fun you’ve had with videos or what fears might be keeping you from it – leave a comment! See you back here again for Day 30, friends!

Why You Should Connect on LinkedIn

Glad to have you here for Day 28 of 31 Days of Connection! Stop by Day 1 for links to all the posts in the series.

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Why You Should Connect on LinkedIn

We’ve covered some of the top social media networks to talk about how you can connect better – Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and now LinkedIn. I know you’re wondering if connecting on LinkedIn even matters unless you’re looking for a job. I say yes, it does! It’s another opportunity to connect with a different group of people and I happen to think that everybody should be on LinkedIn. Here are a few reasons to be there:

  • Practice the art of connection
  • Build your own network of fans and promoters
  • Find useful info – less “fluff” and more substance
  • Increase your knowledge and share
  • Improve chances of finding a job when you need one

So now you understand the why, but what about the how. How should you be working on connection through LinkedIn?

LinkedIn

How to Connect on LinkedIn

There are a few different ways that you can reach out to develop new relationships and improves existing ones. Here are some ideas:

Connect with everybody you know. Don’t get caught up in the idea that LinkedIn is just connecting for job opportunities. You never know who you might end up connecting with through somebody you know or a friend of a friend. If you haven’t already taken the time to check through the people suggested for you, be sure to do that and ask to connect with all that you personally know as well as any that you have some sort of affiliation with and any that you would like to connect with in the future. Don’t be spammy and try to connect with a hundred people you don’t know – that’s not a good strategy. Always start with the ones you know. Then go for the ones that know people that you know. And keep building from there.

Post useful and helpful info and links. Post on a regular basis in order to stay in touch with your network. Show your value by sharing truly helpful links and information for others to use. Respond to those who comment on your posts. Share about opportunities to join and connect in some way as well so you can continue to grow your relationships.

Send messages. You can send messages through LinkedIn to people that you have no connection with (don’t be spammy) to introduce yourself and you can message your own connections. Take time to reach out and thank somebody for connecting with you as well as congratulate someone on a recent accomplishment.

Like, Comment, Share. Repeat. If you find any shared info helpful, do click Like and even leave a comment. It’s how you show support and begin a conversation. If you find a link interesting, share it to your connections with your own comment about why you want to share it. Click Like when LinkedIn notifies you of events such as friends getting new jobs or celebrating work anniversaries. Showing support leads to your connections supporting you back and improving the level of connection between you.

LinkedIn

Endorse. LinkedIn will give you opportunities to endorse your connections for their listed skills. Take a few minutes to go through and endorse the ones you can truly speak to. Don’t endorse just to endorse. Be honest – if you know a connection is actually good at something or you have seen them demonstrate a specific skill, then endorse away. Some of them may take the time to endorse you for some skills which helps build up your profile for professional purposes.

Join Groups. This is your chance to connect with people with similar interests. To find groups to join, hover near the top and you’ll see a bar that includes Interests – hover over that and then click on Groups. Click Discover near the top and you’ll be shown groups that LinkedIn thinks you might like and that have your connections as members. If you want to search for certain types of groups, go to the dropdown menu to the left of the search bar at the top and select Groups. Put in search terms for the types of groups you are interested in. After you join a group, be sure to participate and get to know people.

Improve the way you use LinkedIn and you’ll improve the way you connect with people, both personally and professionally. If you haven’t joined LinkedIn yet, give it a try!

Day 28 Daily Connection Challenge:
Connect with some new people on LinkedIn by checking People You May Know under My Network. Like and comment on 3 posts by 3 different people this week and respond back if they comment. Find links to 2 helpful articles this week and share them on LinkedIn with your own commentary on why they are helpful. Search for groups that you have an interest in and join 2 of them.


Thank you for being here for Day 28 of 31 Days of Connection! Are you already on LinkedIn? If so, have you been using to connect with people or just leaving it static? What keeps you from using it more often? Let me know in the comments! See you again for Day 29!

Connecting on Instagram

Welcome to Day 27 of 31 Days of Connection! Stop by Day 1 if you have missed any posts – all the the links are there for you.

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Connecting on Instagram

We’ve covered Facebook and Pinterest, so how about Instagram? How can we connect through Instagram? The connection happens through our photos, of course. But connecting through our photos can only happen if we reach out to people. Here are some ways to reach out on Instagram.

Instagram

Follow people. When you are on Instagram, you should follow as many people you know as possible – this can happen by letting Instagram check your contacts for friends to follow. If you tap the upper right icon in your profile, you’ll find where you can let Instagram find contacts for you to follow. The more people you follow, the more connections might happen. Though if you keep your profile private, you will mainly connect with people you already know. If you want to connect beyond your circle of friends, it’s better to have a public Instagram profile (I don’t recommend this for young people) but then keep in mind that anybody can see your photos. That may limit what you decide to share. It’s completely up to you how you want to use Instagram.

Find new people. You can find new people to follow and connect with by tapping the icon (+ and a person symbol) in the upper left of your profile. It will give you a long list of suggestions. You can tap each one to check out their profile and see if they are somebody you would like to follow. Tap Follow for each on that you want to add. Some of these people may follow you back and you will also start appearing in more suggestion lists which will lead to new people following you.

Post, comment, mention, tag. The more you post pictures on Instagram with a caption or explanation and the more you comment and like others’ photos, the more connection can happen. If somebody comments on your post, be sure to comment back and mention them when you reply. To mention them, you need to put @ followed by their user name.You can also tag photos with users if appropriate and use hashtags in your text to help even more people find you. Search for hashtags to use by tapping Search, tapping inside the Search box, and then selecting Tags. Start typing in the subject you’re looking for in the search bar and a list will populate of possible hashtags along with how many times they have been used. When you tap on a hashtag, you will see the posts that have used that hashtag and you can go look at any that interest you.

Instagram

Direct message. You can Direct Message on Instagram. You can send posts, profiles, and more. You can also message people that you are not following (it will show up as a request), so this yet another way to reach out to new people to build relationships. To directly send a post to somebody, tap on the arrow underneath the photo. It will bring up a list of people that you can send it to and after you select them, you can add a message. To review direct messages, tap on the icon in the upper right of the feed, and then you’ll see them listed. If you’ve been sent a message, you’ll see a notification.

Stories. Instagram also has Stories. Stories are the opportunity to record a bit of video to post instead of a photo. These very short video posts work very similarly to Snapchat in that they disappear automatically after 24 hours. You’ll see a selection of them across the top of your feed and can tap on any one to watch.

There are a few ways to find people and interact on Instagram and you can always use it improve your connection and relationships with your current circle of family and friends.

Day 27 Daily Connection Challenge:
Search for suggested people to follow on Instagram and follow at least a couple of new ones. Also search for people and pages that you enjoy following on Facebook to see if they are on Instagram and follow them. Add at least one hashtag to the text of the next picture you post on Instagram. Comment on at least 3 Instagram posts this week. Try direct messaging a post to a friend. If you’re not already on Instagram, check out some FAQ here and see what you think about joining!


Thank you for stopping by for Day 27 of 31 Days of Connection! Are you an Instagram user? Have you tried reaching out and connecting with new people? What other ideas do you have for connecting on Instagram? Let me know in the comments! See you again for Day 28, friends!

 

Ways to Connect on Pinterest

Welcome to Day 26 of 31 Days of Connection! Stop by Day 1 if you have missed any of the series – all the links are right there for you.

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Ways to Connect on Pinterest

We discussed connection on Facebook, but you might wonder how much connection is possible on Pinterest when you just stop there and pin your favorite ideas onto your own boards. But there is opportunity to create and improve connection there – it is after all, another “social” media network. The main way that brands and blogs try to connect on Pinterest is to share pins that you will like and share and then click over to the site, which helps with traffic and may lead you to connect further. This post is focused on how to connect on Pinterest as a user that’s not trying to promote a site.

Pinterest

There are ways to connect with other people on Pinterest, especially those who have similar interests and enjoy pinning the same things you do. You can also further connect with your own friends and family on Pinterest. How? Here are a few ideas:

Send Pins or Profiles. When you find a pin you love, send it to a friend! Hover over the pin, click the paper airplane symbol, and then you can put in the name or email of who you want to send that pin to, along with a message. Or send a profile to somebody you know. If you love everything somebody on Pinterest shares, then click the 3 dots in the upper left of that person’s profile, where you can select to message that person or Send Profile.

Send Messages. Talk to your friends while you’re pinning away. You can message them without ever leaving your happy Pinterest world. Click on Notifications on the upper right side and Messages. Type in the name/email and your message – super easy.

Comment on Pins. If you like a pin or want to add some info or ask a question, click on the pin and then click Comments near the bottom. Leave your comment in the box. You might strike up a conversation with the pin owner or other Pinterest users.

Pinterest

Follow Pinterest’s Recommendations. Pinterest sends you emails about pins you may like and Pinterest users who are pinning similar things to their boards. Follow these people and you may find some great new ideas or connect with somebody new.

Start a Group Board. A group board is a wonderful way to have a group of friends, family, or colleagues all pin things together to the same board. It could be used for planning a project, sharing recipe or fitness ideas, and more. When you set up a group board, you can add collaborators to it. If you have under 20 collaborators, there is some group chat functionality as well so you can message the group.

Use Pinterest for more than pinning your favorite ideas and inspiration. It’s another opportunity for you to build connection into your day right where you’re already hanging out.

Day 26 Daily Connection Challenge:
As you’re pinning this week, leave comments on at least 3 different pins. Find 2 pins that you know friends would enjoy and send them. Try sending a message to a friend just to say that you thought of them because of something you just pinned. If you have an idea that you would like group participation for, start a group board, add some collaborators, and start pinning. Not on Pinterest yet? Check out the Pinterest Guide and get started!


Thank you for joining me for Day 26 of 31 Days of Connection! Are you a Pinterest user? What kind of pins are your favorite? Have you used it to connect with people? Let me know in the comments! See you back here for a Day 27 post!

 

How to Connect in Facebook Groups

Welcome to Day 25 of 31 Days of Connection! Remember, you can find all the posts from the series linked on Day 1.

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How to Connect in Facebook Groups

When we talked about the 10 ways to connect on Facebook, I mentioned Facebook Groups. Facebook Groups are a way of connecting within Facebook that allow greater opportunity for interactions now that Facebook has so many users and posts that you don’t actually see everything your friends and liked pages post. Since you’re interacting with a group of people who have very similar interests or goals, you are more likely to bond and connect with your group. It’s a bit more personal than connecting on Facebook in general. It’s easier to connect in groups because the setting is a little more intimate and you see all the notifications of group activity, making it easier to respond and participate, which leads to more connecting and creating better and new relationships.

Facebook groups

Joining a Facebook Group

Have a clear reason for joining a group. You can join a Group by someone in it adding you, by receiving an invitation, or by adding yourself or requesting to join. If you are automatically added to a group, you will receive a notification. To find new Facebook groups to join, click on Groups on your left sidebar, and then click Discover at the top. You’ll be shown a selection of groups that your friends belong to, a selection of local groups, plus groups in different categories. For each group, you’ll be shown which of your Facebook friends are already members of these groups. Note that secret groups and members won’t be shown.

When you want to join a group, click on the group’s page, check out the description and any rules, the privacy setting to make sure you’re comfortable with it (I’ll discuss that in the next section), and then click on the Join button. Depending on the type of group it is, an administrator may look at your request and approve it. Once you’re approved, you’ll be notified on Facebook that you’ve been added to the group.

Once you’ve joined a Facebook Group, you’ll get the most benefit and connection from it by participating regularly. Post in the group, respond to others’ posts with comments, and encourage others. Always be kind and courteous. Don’t self-promote unless encouraged to do that. Be sure to read the rules of the group and follow them. If at any point you decide that the group isn’t right for you, just click the button that says Joined and click Leave Group. You’ll be removed from the list and the group removed from your groups list. Members will not be notified that you left.

Facebook group

Creating a Facebook Group

There are many wonderful reasons to create your own group: friends with a common goal, membership to a community, mentorship and education, buying and selling, connecting family members, class reunions, etc. And it’s simple to create your Facebook Group! Once you decide what kind of group you want and what the purpose is, you should come up with a description first. Also, find a couple friends who would like to be a part of the group before you actually create it so you can add them when you start it. On the left sidebar under Groups, click on Create Group. Choose a goal, then enter a name, add a person or two who has already told you they would like to be a part of it, and choose your privacy setting.

There are 3 privacy settings. A Public group is one that anybody can find, anybody can see who the members are in the group, and anybody can see what the members are posting in the group. A Closed group is one that anybody can find and request to join, anybody can see who the members of the group are, but only the members can see what is being posted. A Secret group is one that nobody can find through searching, only members can see who the other members are, and only the members can see what is being posted. After you choose your privacy setting, you can click Create to start the group, but you’re not done with the setup yet.

You’ll want to add your group description, a cover photo (check this post for info on optimum sizing of the group cover photo, but if it’s a small private group, you don’t have to stress over it – just add a photo that’s at least 400 x 150 pixels), and take care of a few other additional settings that Facebook will walk you through. Then invite members to your group! You can instantly add your own Facebook friends – I recommend never instantly adding anyone without getting their permission first. I have been added to groups without giving my permission and even though they are great groups, I want to make the decision whether or not to join first.

To add members to your group, you can share about it personally, in email, or on Facebook (try clicking Share from your group). Any Facebook friends that give you permission can instantly be added by putting their name (if they are your FB friend, their name will pop up to select as you begin typing) in the Add members box and clicking Add. Instead of instantly adding people, you can invite specific people to join by putting their email address in the Add Members box and then clicking Add. Facebook will send them an email telling them that you invited them to join the group. They can click the Join Group button in their email and be added that way. Simple!

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Day 25 Daily Connection Challenge:
If you are already a member of a Facebook group, make it a priority to participate this week. If you have started a group and have been neglecting it (like me), get in there this week and start posting. If you’re not in any groups, follow the directions in the post to search for a group you would like to be a part of and join up or create your own group if you have an idea for one (it’s free, you know!). 


Thank you for being here for Day 25 of 31 Days of Connection! Facebook groups are a fun and easy way to connect with people. Do you belong to any groups currently? Have you created any groups? Got questions? Let me know in the comments! See you soon for Day 26!

10 Ways to Connect on Facebook

Welcome to Day 24 of 31 Days of Connection! Have you missed some of the posts? No worries – you can always click over to Day 1, where all the post links are listed for you. And have you become a From Lisa Marie subscriber so you don’t miss any posts?

Now, let’s talk about Facebook!


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Connecting on Facebook

Facebook opened up to everyone in 2006 ( I joined up sometime in 2008) and now has over 1.7 billion monthly active users worldwide. The largest percentage of users range in age from 20’s to 30’s, though there are still plenty of users in their 40’s and beyond (my 86-year old dad is on Facebook). Teens are the lowest – you’ll find them on other social media networks instead. With this large of an online social network that’s free, there are so many opportunities to connect with people. It’s amazing how many different ways you can achieve connection through Facebook!

Facebook connecting

10 Ways to Connect on Facebook

There are many different pieces to Facebook now, so you have multiple methods to connect with other users. Here are 10 different ways you can connect on Facebook:

1 – Profile. Your personal profile is the way you connect with friends and family. Not only do you get to connect with your close friends and relatives, but you can connect with people you don’t see often. Tip: Try searching for distant relative names in the search box. Send them a friend request along with a message explaining who you are. It’s a fun way to reconnect with different parts of the family.

2 – Messenger. This is the opportunity to use Facebook like an instant chat. It’s a faster way to communicate and connect with your friends than emailing. You can even message questions or information to page owners. Tip: Try the new $ icon in Messenger which allows you to send or receive money for free. Pay back somebody you owe or gift some money. You and your friend will need to link up your debit cards.

3 – Games. There are many interactive apps and games available on Facebook. Sometimes you make new friends by playing online games and sometimes you increase the amount of daily connection you have with another person by playing regularly. Tip: If you are getting overwhelmed with gaming requests from friends, you can click the little arrow in the upper right corner and choose to have Facebook stop showing you any notifications from that game.

4 – Events. You can set up an event and invite all your friends or specific people to it. It’s a great way to share event info as well as keep a conversation going within the comments. Tip: Find fun stuff happening near you by going to Events, Discover, and searching by time, location, or categories of events.

5 – Pages. Public pages give you the opportunity to connect with brands, public figures, or be a part of communities with common interests. By Liking a page, you see some of the posts and can comment and end up connecting with others who like that page as well. Tip: Make sure you don’t miss what your favorite pages post. Click the dropdown arrow on the upper right of your Facebook top toolbar; Click Newsfeed Preferences; Click Prioritize Who to See First. Now choose up to 30 pages or people who you want to see posts from at the top of your timeline when they do post.

Facebook connecting

6 – Live Video. Live video is fairly new and up until recently was only available to pages and through smart phones. Now you can do live video on your personal profile and from your computer! Live video comes close to connecting personally and lets you share an experience instantly with others. Tip: Try the Facebook Live Map to see live videos from around the world. Sure, there’s going to be some nonsense, but it can be fascinating to see who is posting what right at that very moment anywhere you can think of!

7 – Groups. Facebook groups are a wonderful way to bring together people with common goals. They can be public or private. We’ll talk more about groups in the next post. Tip: Be sure to use the correct privacy setting when creating a group – choose between Public, Closed, or Secret.

8 – Tagging. When you post photos that include friends, or want to share your post with specific people, you can tag them in the photo or within your post. This assures that they will see the post and most likely interact with you. Tip: If you’re tagged in something you don’t want showing, you can hide the post from your timeline or remove the tag. Change your settings to review all tags of you so you can approve them before they show up on your timeline for all to see if you have any concerns.

9 – Hashtags. When you use a hashtag on a personal profile post, it will only show up for your friends. If you set your post to Public, or use hashtags on page posts, then the hashtag can be searched to see what others might be saying about it. Tip: Go into the search bar and search for hashtags that interest you and you might find some new friends or pages to follow.

10 – Ads. Ads are the best way for brands to connect with their target audience as well as that audience connecting with others who have that same brand interest. Facebook is one of the most effective places to advertise because they have the best developed user info. Your first thought about ads may be negative, but when brands connect to the right consumers with the right ads at the right time, there’s nothing negative about it. If I see an ad that totally applies to me and appeals to me, I am likely to want to connect then and there. Tip: Give feedback on ads in order to see ads that are most relevant to you. When you see an ad that you like or was well-targeted to you, click the arrow in the top right corner of the ad and select “This ad was useful.” When you see an ad that is either offensive to you or completely doesn’t apply to you, then click the arrow in the top right corner of the ad and select “Hide ad.” Facebook may ask you additional questions in order to refine your preferences.

Facebook is constantly changing and you may be missing out on some of the newest ways to connect. Stay up-to-date and try new things!
connection

Day 24 Daily Connection Challenge:
Choose 2 ways of connecting on Facebook that you have either never tried before or have rarely used. Try them out today. If you get confused about how to navigate to what you’re looking for, click the top right drop down arrow, select Help, and go from there. If you find a fun new way to connect, share it with your friends on Facebook!


Thank you for stopping by for Day 24 of 31 Days of Connection! Have you used all of these ways to connect on Facebook? What tip did you find most surprising or helpful? Let me know in the comments or stop by and tell me on my Facebook Page! See you back here for Day 25!