Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Think About It Tuesday

One of the most interesting and satisfying components of being a life coach is that it is a holistic (or as I like to look at it, a “whole-istic”) practice. Together we look at all the parts of a person’s life – physical, emotional, relational, financial, spiritual – and the intrinsic pieces of ourselves – our dreams, goals, creativity, ambitions. Each woman’s life is like a sparkling multi-faceted diamond of untold treasure to explore and polish to bring out its best! That’s why in this blog you will find a variety of topics that hopefully will be of interest to the many parts of you! That being said, today I’d like to touch upon a topic that has been swirling around my brain recently. I suppose it could be considered in the realm of the financial world, because it probably is your most valuable commodity: your identity and privacy.

Let me preface this by saying that I am a child of the 60’s, and the old hippie in me still leans towards conspiracy theories and will probably always question authority. It’s a blessing and a curse, believe me! But lately the growing trend of “putting it all out there” on the internet, or “in the cloud” troubles me. Now I use some of these apps, and I do have certain things residing in that ominous “cloud”. I understand that it’s simply a linking of many servers all over the world, and it will enable you to keep your hard drive free of clutter – sort of like a storage unit in the sky with instant accessibility to all your stuff from home to on the road to your local coffee hangout. I know it works for many folks, and makes life easier, and that’s great. What concerns me is the information people are sending out there for storage (even though it’s encrypted six ways from Sunday, yada, yada, yada). We put all our banking, mortgage, credit card and stocks/savings data into a free application that allows us to keep all our financial worth in one spot, with up-to-the-minute balance accuracy. We store all our medical records in another free application. We store receipts, personal data and business documentation on another app. We even put all our passwords into one master app, which will then graciously generate new strong-as-steel passwords for us. We sigh a breath of relief that all this info is safe and secure, and now we have more room on our computers and phones for pictures and to play with digital birds with a ‘tude.

Somehow, to me it is akin to giving someone all my savings, my wallet and the key to my house, and then checking in with them when I want to spend something, or do something because they’ve said, “trust me.” Call me crazy (and believe me, it wouldn’t be the first time, or I’m sure the last), but shouldn’t we be a little more careful? Should we be handing over all the details of our lives to an unnamed, faceless “cloud”? As a coach, two of the words I use most with my clients are “mindful” and “intentional”. This comes to eating, exercising, and every area of life. Again, I use some of the apps I’ve mentioned, I love technology and am a self-confessed techno geek, and I know in this digital age much of our lives are accessible with just a keystroke anyway. All I’m saying is choose with thoughtful intentionality and mindfulness how much of your life you are giving away, from social network postings (do you REALLY want to tell the world you’re going on vacation next week – why not just leave your key taped to your front door with a welcome sign?), to your finances, to your resume, to anything. Use the technology wisely, sparingly, safely - you’re potentially giving away a lot of your personal power to strangers. Be careful of the priceless information that is part of who you are – a treasure.

Think about it…



  1. YES! Finally, someone who gets it and isn't afraid to say so. Having seen how close some people get to stripping themselves naked on the web (I'm talking about personal info here), as if every post is a private conversation with one trusted individual instead of what it really is -- the publication of every post to anyone who cares to look, not just now but for all time -- I believe this kind of warning can never be given too often or too widely.

    There's no such thing as absolute security, but if it's on the web, it's only a combination of luck, timing, luck, someone else's interest, and did I mention luck? -- before it ends up in the hands of someone you wish didn't have it. And certain "social networks" make this much worse by their attitude that *your* data belongs to *them* by default, an attitude made worse by the way they keep revising their policy and re-arranging their preferences options to "help" you lose track of what you're allowing them to do (and what they're not allowing you to prevent).

    So right on, sister!

    And in the spirit of this post, I'm signing myself --


    -- though you know who I am.

  2. I am also a suspicious person by nature and sometimes that enables or disables us. However, I like to consider myself a private person and I do not put my personal information out there unless it is absolutely necessary for a transaction that I need to have done. I don't see anything wrong with being private - but sometimes it comes across in a not so flattering way. My privacy is one of the few things I feel that belong to me alone and I value it. Anonymous also