I analyzed all my #iamgrateful and #iamthankful posts. Fascinating stuff.

Humbling stuff.

> 485 posts in 2 weeks short of 2 years
> Basically 3 Months with Zero Posts (12/2016, 2/2017, 3/2017)
> 331 straight posts (ending on 10/2/2016)
> An average of 30 Likes (14754 total), 6 Comment Threads (2962 Total) and 1 out of every 5 posts (86 Total) was shared.

Perhaps best … at some point over the past 2 years, 34 different people made their own post using #iamgrateful and #iamthankful. That’s a nice feeling.

There are some obvious winners. Our post about Jaan’s birth left the rest in the dust. People love our babies, justifiably so.

People love it when we get along. The photo of Michelle Obama hugging GW (which got love from all people on all sides, and gave me hope) had the most shares.

They also love it when we try and get along, but the effort can cause a push and pull. My post asking a favor of everyone who voted for Trump, to lead with empathy, received the same number of shares…but I also lost some friends even by making the ask.

I lost my credibility on 10/2/2016, after the first Trump v Clinton debate and a post I titled “She Lost”. I was angry. I was reading everyone’s comments and I couldn’t believe the side I supported was missing the point: Hillary was losing by not winning. By losing my temper on people, I lost some friends. I lost some self-respect. And I lost credibility.

The average number of people liking my posts dropped by 20%. It doesn’t pay (for me) to lose my temper. Ever. I was also rude. And it still kills me. Hurts me. People also don’t turn to my feed for news or “genius”. Most of my posts with “zero” comments and likes were posts where I thought I was sharing something “smaht”.

I should stop that. 🙂 I’m not a thought leader about any thoughts other than thoughts about my kids. People turn to my posts to see my family, to see me celebrate other people, and maybe, to pick up a smile. Self-promotion? Doesn’t suit me (nor should it.)FB can be helpful. People like being helpful. Holy hell do people like being helpful. The most comments, outside of Jaan being born, were reserved for the times I asked questions (sometimes 60/70 comment threads, or 2x the average.)And it’s like life in general. The more you are there for folks the more they are there for you. Stepping back from life makes repatriation a little slower.

It was a good exercise for me. I’ve always been aware of what people look to me for (comfort, safety, honesty, and hopefully, support/faith), what they don’t (confidence, genius, intelligence), and when they turn away (when I get passionate, and when I get angry). The analysis above … validates what I’ve known for years. It helps keep me honest about my small place in this world. And my active pursuit of it always brings me back to a simpler place requiring me to find greater context and humility.

I pulled this post together as part of a storytelling exercise. It was supposed to serve the basis for a presentation I was making on Thursday night to 100 people. But that … fell through. For a whole host of gut punching reasons. I am sad about it. But I won’t stay sad about it.

It’s far from a loss in the least. I’m excited to come back to this in a year and beyond. Just like I was able to go back and visit some of my favorites from the past two years. And remind myself of some of my mistakes.

#iamgrateful and #iamthankful for what I’ve learned. Game on.

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