[Update 12/20/10] The contest has ended. Please see the results here.. And read on for the second part of this post on overcoming anxiety.
Voting starts today. Please help me with a quick 2 sec vote everyday until December 10th, 2010 (Click here to read why you should vote for me). If you need a quick reminder, sign up here and I’ll shoot you an email each morning. And if you believe in me, please also share the vote page or video link on facebook, twitter, or emailing them to your network. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Editing by the genius editor Brian Gavin. Director and Director of Photography by my talented and fast-learning husband Jeremy Sawatzky. Music by the inspiring Jim Brickman, “If You Believe” from his album “Greatest Hits”, used with permission from the artist.
It was a fun two days of filming. Everyone in our family helped out. My mother-in-law was the second camera operator, my father-in-law was the sound guy holding the boom mic, and Tommy & Blackie were my supporting actors. We improvised and learned the technical details as we went along. The day was filled with a lot of laughter and a ton of learning.
About The Video
Since we had a 2 week family vacation that was pre-planned right in the middle of the competition, my only option was to create the video two weeks before phase 1 ended, prior to receiving the actual video guidelines.
Unfortunately, the guidelines do not allow showing of other people in the video, so we had to cut out adorable clips of baby Ryan and I (image at the top of this post, captured from the video), and Jeremy and I. And in order to fit the 90 second time frame, some of my dialog was cut, which would have made the video more engaging. But we did the best we could given the circumstances.
I am hoping to “bribe” our friend Brian in the coming week to maybe create a full version of the video without restrictions using the full dialog. If it becomes available, I’ll announce it on the Happiness Team mailing list (You can join it here – where I’ll be sending a quick daily reminder to vote during phase 2, along with an inspirational message of the day).
I took a bit of risk with the video in that instead of showing myself explicitly saying, “Vote for me. I am ALWAYS in a good mood.” – which I anticipated everyone else to do – I took an indirect approach.
Instead of explicitly saying how many blog subscribers I have, or how many facebook fans this blog attracts, or how much social media experience I have (which can all be easily found with a quick visit to this blog), we used cinematic story telling to present a simple message: I have been successfully blogging professionally about personal happiness for several years, and I am a genuinely happy person with a simple purpose – to spread happiness.
I hope my indirect approach of using visually engaging story telling will make my video stand out from the crowd and demonstrate, to the judges, originality and my commitment to delivering quality content.
What do you think? Share your feedback with me about the video in the comment section. And if you can, I’d love it if you can leave a quick comment on YouTube, and click the “Like” button. Thank you for your support!!
Related Article: Help Me Spread Happiness?
A post on Think Simple Now isn’t a post unless it contained some practical words of personal growth in it. So I wanted to share with you insights I’ve learned about anxiety and nervousness thought entering and campaigning for this blogging competition.
The tricky thing about entering into a competition like this, while traveling on vacation, is that there is a lot more time to think about it, without the ability to do much about it. Our minds have a funny way of looping our thoughts and creating unnecessary doubt.
I spent a small portion ([added by Jeremy] read: large portion) of our trip annoying my husband by second-guessing myself, and asking loaded questions with the intention of having him soothe my doubts.
And then it occurred to me that all of the built-up anxiety and second-guessing were just wasted energy. Wasted, because they don’t contribute anything to the outcome. So I took a deep breathe, relaxed, and focused my energy on the activities I was engaged in at the moment – like listening to the sounds of the waves crashing against the shore, watching my son play in the water, feeling the heat of the sun on my face, taking in the texture of the book I’m reading, or feeling gratitude for the thirst-quenching gift of a cold glass of water.
I think it’s normal to feel some butterflies when anticipating something uncertain in our future – like this competition for me or perhaps a job interview or a date for you. But prolonged worrying and second-guessing ourselves can consume us, drain our energy, and cause us to pull our focus away from what matters – the realities of whatever it is that is happening right now, the gift of this moment. Plus, anxiety and nervousness don’t feel very good in our bellies.
I don’t know if it’s true, but I’d like to believe that things happen for a reason. Whether this is true or not, doesn’t really matter. What I do know is this: it is us who gives meaning to our experiences. Therefore, I choose to give meanings to events in a way that benefit my emotional wellbeing, and help me to feel peaceful and happy.
Life has a mysterious way of revealing its great plans for us. And I choose to see that no matter what I am presented with, it is the best thing for me, even if I don’t understand it. And as such, I am okay with whatever the outcome will be.
It’s like that relationship that ended years ago, which at the time caused us a lot of pain. And then years later, looking back, realizing that it was the best thing that could have happened to us.
At the time, we didn’t understand what good could come from such a painful event, but later realized that someone who is a better fit for us awaits us in the future. Or, the suffering in itself pushed us to an emotional edge, triggering us to re-examine our life, thus recognizing the simplistic beauty and wisdom that constantly surrounds us.
Life is simple, and it is beautiful, and it is a constant unfolding of opportunities for us to learn from. Embrace these opportunities – sometimes disguised as (potentially painful) challenges – and your life will surly become more rich and meaningful. You will likely smile more, and be able to spread more Joy to other people.
I wish you a beautiful weekend, my friends. Thank you for supporting me, for reading, for helping make my dream -of writing about the beautiful subtleties of Life- a reality.
Want to see me write on positive topics 5 days a week for 6 months? Then help me win the Good Mood Blogger job with a daily vote here (until Dec 10). If you need a daily reminder, sign up here (no spam. Only for voting reminders until Dec 10th). And if you liked my video, support me also by hitting the “Like” button, and leave a quick comment on YouTube. Thanks a million! I couldn’t do this without you.
P.S. Just for kicks, here are some behind the scene candid photos from our video shoot at home
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Related Article: Help Me Spread Happiness?
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