It’s 2 a.m. and you’ve just fallen in bed after a night of drinks and dancing with the girls.
Your phone quietly informs you of a new Facebook notification just before your eyes close and you drift away to sleep and you groggily reach across your nightstand, flipping the phone toward you.
You unlock the phone and squint to read that your ex just got engaged.
Whether you’re single or married now, you have no choice but to do a little stalking. I mean after all, don’t you want to know who he ended up with?
You’ll compare yourself to her, wonder if she’s better in bed than you, and if you’re still raw about your breakup, you’ll probably wind up hating her.
That’s no good for you or anyone else. Hate is one of the most self-destructive emotions we have.
Logically, we know that we shouldn’t look and stalk – but in those weak moments, like at 2 a.m. after a night of drinks and dancing, we can’t help ourselves.
But now Facebook has decided to step on in and give you a little help getting over your ex.
That’s right – now there is a way to prevent your urge to stalk, and we can thank the great Mark Zuckerberg.
As you’ve probably already heard, Facebook recently announced that you can control how much (and how little) you see of your ex. That’s cool and all, but I feel like there’s something else we need.
Dear Mark Zuckerberg, Help me out!
So this is why I’m not totally satisfied yet. Right now, these tools are exclusive to people who change their relationship status.
So, if you change relationship status, you’ll be presented with the new options.
I say that’s pretty cool. Of course I also have a suggestion for the Facebook team. You ready?
Give me this much control over all of my friends. There are a few things I don’t want to see repeatedly.
For example, some author friends and I share several free ebook groups that we use to promote our free days on Kindle Select. The problem is that when they post their freebies, I end up seeing like 50 notifications on the same item. This clutters up my newsfeed and pisses me off a little.
When I try to unfollow the person, I still see the notifications.
On top of this, I do not want to annoy my own friends with similar stuff.
So I think I’ve made my point. Facebook. Help me out.
What do you think? Should Facebook make its “ex” tools available to everyone? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
So, this post is a bit off-topic for QueenBeeing, but I felt like it was appropriate because it’s all about one way to follow your passion.
See, I’m a professional blogger as well as a life coach, author and journalist, and I’ve been making my living through my blogs in various ways for a decade now. So I’ve learned a few things, and I’ve made a lot of mistakes.
But I’ve also figured out what works and how to make it happen. I blog about all of this over at OnlineWritingPro.com, by the way.
The reason I’m blogging about – well, blogging – at QueenBeeing today is because it allows me to personally follow my passion – and because I could teach almost anyone to create a blog that allows them to follow theirs (and get paid to do so!).
Part of my whole personal and professional philosophy is all about paying it forward, so I’ve done something sort of special – I created a bunch of good stuff and I’m giving it away over at OnlineWritingPro.com.
I am about to come out of the shopper shame closet. I hope you’re sitting down. My name is Angie and I am a secret Wal-Mart shopper.
A secret Wal-Mart shopper is not to be confused with a Wal-Mart secret shopper, mind you.
A secret shopper is a person who offers his employer a glimpse at what a real customer would experience, and generally the employees never even know they have been “shopped.”
But as a secret Wal-Mart shopper, I do not hide my identity to the people at the store (though I feel a little dirty, shopping there, not gonna lie–but seriously? Sometimes my inner cheapskate comes out and drags me there, reminding me that there is no reason to pay more money for the exact same item I can buy elsewhere just because I have Wal-Mart shame. Don’t judge me. I just don’t see any logic to it.
However, it’s safe to say that there is a certain lack of concern for customer service, at least in some Wal-Mart stores in my area.
Well, one evening a couple weeks ago, I thought I was finally ready to end my secret Wal-Mart affair. I’d spent more than an hour gathering up $500 worth of groceries, household items, toiletries and school uniforms for my kids (all under one roof, and that was enough food to feed my family for literally three weeks!)
Again. I just can’t help myself. I’d have spent at least twice that if I’d bought all of that locally.
And then, I waited in a single line with 16, 17, 18 other customers, a line that over the course of ten minutes kept me in the same spot but continued to get longer.
If I didn’t need all that stuff, I swear I’d have walked right out of there!
Proof of the power of social media: I am writing this post in which I am publicly admitting my secret and tawdry affair with Wal-Mart.
A man next to me in the line who was really sweet and totally reminded me of some awesome outdoorsy dad type offered me his place in line, even though my cart was formidable and would clearly cost him an extra 30 minutes in line, if this checker was really moving as slowly as she appeared to be.
She seemed to be in slow motion. It was making me a little testy. Ha, that might be an understatement.
I thanked him and politely refused the offer, pointing out the whole cart thing.
The Tweet of Defiance: My Pseudo-Dramatic Social Media Moment
Anyhoo, that was about the time I decided to tweet my displeasure about this situation with a bold shout out to @WalMart. I was feeling all kinds of bold and justified.
Note to self: never shop at the Ferguson @Walmart again. One line open, 16 carts deep, not moving. Seriously? Turn down.
After my tweet of defiance, I noticed that within 3 or 4 minutes, like three new lines opened right up.
I am not saying it was the tweet. I am just saying it was a super fun coincidence if not.
I looked around at the relieved congestion and the people feeling less stuck and the mood lightening and smiled. (Meanwhile inside my head, I’m feeling like I am some kind of Wal-Mart shopper super hero, like my mad social media skills totally saved the freaking day. Like, I reached out and told on them via Twitter, and Mama Wal-Mart made them play nice…ahh….)
But really–I know, it could be a coincidence.
Well, then what should’ve and almost did permanently end my secret Wal-Mart affair happened…I came face to face with the checkout girl, who, by the way was an absolutely gorgeous teenager.
Unfortunately, her mother nor her employer had taught her how to talk to people. The first thing she said to me, after announcing “there’s no waiting on 10,” was, “uh ma’am, I’m closed.”
That was about the time I almost cried and started a public scene at Wal-Mart, totally blowing my secret cover. This was so unlike me, but damned if I didn’t just give up my spot in that other line that had refilled my spot and gone four big carts deeper.
It was a hard day, y’all, and it was nearly 10 p.m. at this point. I just wanted to go home.
I guess the beautiful checkout girl sensed my desperation, because she took pity on me and allowed me to stay.
I got this impression she was trying to leave, because she then informed me that she had seen me in the aisle earlier and she felt sorry for the checkout person who “got me.”
You know, because I was buying so much stuff…from the store…that she works at…ahem.
No seriously, she really said that. At least the part about feeling sorry for the checker (herself, as it turned out–karma’s a bitch, ain’t she?).
My #1 Customer Service Tip to Anyone Who Gets Paid by a Store, Shop or Other Business That Depends on My Money: Don’t make me feel guilty for spending it there!
That was about the time I told her that if I worked at Wal-Mart, I’d love customers who come in and spend that kind of cheddar on a semi regular basis (don’t judge me! It’s usually once quote month or less and I totally support my local businesses, too…but please note that I personally know a few people who have worked at Wal-Mart over the years, and that, in my opinion, counts as supporting locals.
Heck, I worked for American Studios, the company that previously subcontracted as Wal-Mart’s portrait studios, in my college and slightly post college years. I personally never worked for Wal-Mart but I suppose I would’ve never had those opportunities (and back then, top notch training) were it not for uncle Sam (Walton).
Plus, I am interested in this whole mother’s day campaign that is featuring products from woman owned companies, but I am saving that for another post.
(Which reminds me, tune in all week to find out what I’ll be revealing about myself at Queenbeeing.com – it’s related…sorta. But it’s definitely huge.)
So, the checker sort of redeemed herself by getting all the groceries in bags and helping me load them into the cart. That was cool…except that she also made me feel like I should have apologized for buying stuff from her employer…but I think if I were her employer, I would want to, I don’t know, teach these people to stop acting like they hate their customers.
But here is why, at present, I haven’t broken up with Wal-Mart yet!
Wal-Mart’s Social Media Geniuses: I can’t quit you!
Like I said, maybe it was just a coincidence that directly after I tweeted, the floodgates (aka checkout stands) miraculously opened up. But then again, maybe not. See, once I got home, I noticed that Wal-Mart had tweeted me back!
@angieatkinson Thank you for letting us know about the long lines at your local Walmart. We value what our customers have to say. -Jes — Walmart (@Walmart) April 29, 2014
As a total social media geek, I just can’t quit a company that has that kind of sharp customer service on its side–despite the fact that it sells its products for “irresponsibly low” prices, according to Daniel Tosh. (And come on, that’s a whole lot of the reason I can’t stop, let’s be honest!)
With all of this being said, I’m fully prepared to have the Wal-Mart hating-party rain down its disdain on me–I can take it. Let me have it–I deserve it. I hate myself for loving Walmart.
How do you feel about Wal-Mart? Let me hear it in the comments section, below!
Genuine handcrafted silver jewelry is as beautiful as it is unique. Whether you’re looking for pieces to add to your collection or are shopping for gifts, there are excellent online sources for handmade earrings, pendants, rings, barrettes, and necklaces. For a wonderful buying experience, follow these five tips.
1. Find a reputable source. This may go without saying, but don’t confuse commercially manufactured jewelry with handcrafted silver jewelry. The latter is made by artisans that take great pride in their work. It’s helpful to look for a company that has been in business for decades, and that has been selling online for at least five years.
2. Take advantage of customization. When jewelry is handmade, it can be customized in any number of ways, from the lengths of chains to the types of gemstones used in pendants and rings. You don’t need to settle for “almost good enough.” Instead, you can get the piece you’ve always dreamed of, in exactly the right size.
3. Measure carefully. Because customized pieces generally aren’t returnable, it’s important to make sure that the handcrafted silver jewelry you order will fit. It only takes a few minutes to get a good measurement, and doing so will ensure that the necklace or ring you order will be exactly what you want. For rings, ask a friend to take a piece of string, put it around the knuckle or largest part of your finger, and mark the string. To determine the size, hold the string against a tape measure and compare your measurement to the website’s sizing chart. If you’re in between sizes, it’s best to go with the larger size. You can also use string to measure for bracelet, necklace, or anklet lengths.
4. Do your gemstone research. The best online jewelry sites have a wealth of information on gemstones. Before you order, read up on the gemstones you are considering. It’s important to know, for example, that aquamarine can be cleaned with dishwashing detergent, but that ultrasonic and steam cleaning may damage the stone. Similarly, you may know that pearls are delicate and can easily absorb liquids, but you might not know that turquoise is also porous and can easily become stained.
If you’re going to order jewelry with gemstones, it’s also crucial to know whether the stones are natural or if their colors have been enhanced. Reputable artisans will freely share this information. Don’t be alarmed, however, if the stones have been heated or irradiated to intensify or change their colors. Naturally colored rubies, sapphires, and topaz, for example, are extraordinarily rare; it is an accepted practice within the jewelry industry to enhance gemstone colors.
5. Invest in the real thing. Silver jewelry is gorgeous, but only if it’s real silver. Make sure that the online source you select uses either sterling silver (.925 or 92.5 percent silver) or fine silver (99.9 percent pure silver). When you invest in handcrafted silver jewelry, you’re not only buying a piece you will treasure, but one that is likely to become an heirloom for future generations.
You may or not be aware of my social media goddesss/geek status–either way, you can rest assured that anytime I love anything, I do whatever I can to learn about it and to understand it in the best way possible.
You might have noticed my fashion-geek side by now, and if you’ve been reading my work long, you might already know that I geek out about everything I love.
So imagine how excited I was when People Magazine and Klout.com gave me an opportunity that incorporated several of my passions–including both fashion and social media–among others! That’s right, I’m now a #PeopleVIP!
How I Became a People VIP
Truth be told, I don’t know how special it really is to be a People VIP, but I did get some really great freebies out of the deal. I recently received a #KloutPerk that includes #PeopleVIP status–which offers me several benefits, including some awesome freebies!
For the record, I’ll be blogging more about the rest of the freebies over at AngelaAtkinson.me, or you can see all of them on my Facebook pages! (Both my professional page and the Project Blissful Style page each have some of the photos and info!)
How I Switched Up This Look, and How I’d Switch It Up for Evening
Click each photo above to view the full pic!
I love an opportunity to switch up my look, and here’s a great example of how you can change up your look with just a single accessory change. For the record, I also have this top in blue.
Later in the evening, I would switch this up by changing the jewelry, glamming up the makeup and putting on a pair of platform pumps–black and shiny or even nude. I would also wear the same look with a skirt and tights.
Take a look at this gorgeous piece to the right–I’d love to pair it with a sparkly necklace and earrings along with this outfit and a pair of heels for the evening–or even pair it with a few other sparkly baubles. (Yeah, I totally love bling–I know you had NO idea! Ha!)