My 3 A.M. Epiphany.

01 Jan

I awoke with a 3 A.M. epiphany of my own. I often do. This one took the form of realizing I want my blog to have more focus. I admire people who dive deeply into one topic. I don’t.

According to Barbara Sher, author of Refuse To Choose, I am a scanner, a person who has a wide variety of interests and likes to study them until my saturation point and not beyond that.

According to Barbara, my scanner categories are further specifically denoted as a plate spinner, (I like balancing as many ‘plates’ as I can), and a high speed indecisive.

A what, you say? A high speed indecisive, most of the description sounds like a learning disability, but good ol’ Barbara gets to what the advantage to being this way is – “for spotting gold.”

She came up with what is required in a profession for such a person to be valued:

  1. Freedom to get involved in everything.
  2. Endless variety.
  3. Value a person who can get others enthusiastic.
  4. Reward quick assessments, fast work, quick thinking.

This is all paraphrased from her book. I am so grateful to have found her and her book. I think blogging is a good fit for me.

So, how does that fit with waking up and wanting more focus for my blog? I see my focus will be in the direction of the 4 criteria above.

I joined NaBloPoMo and have been part of a group called Comment For A Comment. It amazes me how interesting people’s blogs are, even posts on subjects that don’t particularly interest me, at least not before I read their blog.

More often than not, when I have observed someone I think is a scanner and tell them about it, they respond as if I have insulted them. After reading Barbara’s book, I am happy to be as I am. Are any of you out there like this?

© 2010 Jeanne Litt, All rights reserved.


Posted by on January 1, 2010 in How to


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17 responses to “My 3 A.M. Epiphany.

  1. AmyH

    January 2, 2010 at 5:18 am

    Happy 2010!

  2. nuvofelt

    January 2, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    I have too many blogs, but then again I would dispute that. I need to keep things in pockets, a drawer for everything and everything in its place. All my blogs focus on one aspect of my life, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I don’t expect everyone to read everything, although I bring them all together in one place.

    Maybe I count as a scanner too, but that’s fine by me. I know exactly whre I stand, LOL. Yes, I’ve joined the NaBloPoMo group too (Myfanwy), and glad I did.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • purplume

      January 3, 2010 at 8:06 am

      Thanks nuvofelt. I’m so happy to find others with many interests. I’m afraid to start a second blog, I spend so much time on this one. It sounds like a great way you have organized your life.

  3. kfainges

    January 2, 2010 at 4:38 pm

    I will have to get myself a copy. Sounds like me to a tee.

    I will see you on NaBloPoMo. Great idea.

    • purplume

      January 3, 2010 at 8:08 am

      Oh a kindred soul, this is good. Barbara Sher breaks scanners into 10 different subtypes. Enjoy the discovery.

  4. blkdrama

    January 3, 2010 at 12:15 am

    I think you need to enjoy the web and get comfortable with it. Feel free to stop by as often as you like. I have lots of interests and even though this blog is for words and images, I’m all over the web with different groups and blogs, so I’m with you. Lots of interests and challenges,

    • purplume

      January 3, 2010 at 8:10 am

      Yay lots of interests and challenges. Hey I just posted my first ever picture. woohoo.

  5. damamat

    January 3, 2010 at 7:25 am

    I think I’m a scanner, too. That’s probably why I get hired into really cool jobs that I get totally bored with after about 2 years and move on to the next new thing. I think I’m gonna have to get a copy of that book.

    Thanks for stopping by my corner of the blogverse. Nice to meetcha!

    • purplume

      January 3, 2010 at 8:13 am

      Yes no coincidences. I hope you enjoy the book. She tells ways to manage our particular talents. As I wrote above in reply to Kfainges, Barbara Sher divides scanners into 10 types and you can be more than one type. Please let me know all of you when you read the book and what you decide about yourselves.

  6. damamat

    January 3, 2010 at 7:30 am

    OH, Almost forgot to tell you that my oldest son, Bug, went through high school using his initials – JB. Another coincidence? I doubt it. xoxoxo

  7. themindofifer

    January 3, 2010 at 3:14 pm

    So here’s the thing… I have always been somewhat of a scanner, I guess. If I look back at it, my life has been a constant exploration of topics. But for me, it isn’t because I take them to my saturation point and then no more, or rather, that isn’t how I perceive it. There are just so many things I am so interested in, and not enough time, so I kind of flitter from topic to topic, trying to get at least a taste of each thing before I must move on to the next.

    • purplume

      January 5, 2010 at 8:38 am

      Hi Mind of Ifer,
      In her book Barbara identifies ten types of scanners. I mentioned the two types that I fit into. For me it was an eye opener to see what my saturation point was. Before that I thought I just couldn’t stick with anything and that I should. Now I take the freedom to move on to the next thing knowing I’ve gotten what I want out of whatever it is.

  8. acfm85

    January 5, 2010 at 12:19 am

    Does jumping into many things but not seeming to finish any to my satisfaction count? 🙂
    Just don’t have enough time to do everything and my blog drains me of some of that energy. Oh well. I enjoy it.
    Thanks for visiting and leaving lovely comments!

    Alyzabeth’s Mommy for 15 Months

  9. purplume

    January 5, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Hi Alyzabeth’s Mommy,
    Barbara talks about this in Chapter 8, entitled, I Never Finish Anything, pg. 101.
    One quote she has on pg.103 is, “The reason you stop when you do: You got what you came for. She goes on with some good techniques for handling it. XD

  10. Anamaris

    January 5, 2010 at 7:47 pm

    Focus. Boy is that a neverending quest for me. I’m trying to narrow the focus of my blog, to hone into a purpose, define and follow it. My excuse right now is that I’m a new blogger, but lack of focus surrounds me. I bore easily, or maybe I just quit when things get tough. I’m typing on 3 hours of sleep, probably not helping my lack of focus.

    • purplume

      January 5, 2010 at 11:05 pm

      You know Anamaris, I have the same thing going on. Barbara encourages giving oneself permission to to explore all your interests. So I was determined to do that until I read that a big mistake of new bloggers is not narrowing your niche and if you keep changing then your reader base needs to keep changing too.
      I was struggling with where I fit in these two sides when suddenly it seems like I can write about Japan forever and maybe I can fit my other interest in a bit. It does seem like it was necessary for me to give myself permission to be scattered before I could come into focus. Does that make any sense to you?


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