4 – Types of Social Engagement

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Good Day, All. Picking up from our previous dialog, Social Engagement usually refers to a person’s participation in a social group or social activity. It is directly related to one’s mental well-being, as high social engagement in a normal and conformist society increases one’s happiness as well as mental and physical health. Social engagement differs from social networking as a social network focuses mainly on the groups and not on the activities. Here, I have listed 5 different types of social engagement:

Live Entertainment: Entertainment is a means of drowning the monotony of our daily lives Live Entertainment shows (such as music festivals, theatre, art show, sports events etc.) helps you connect with like-minded people. It helps people form a bond over a common matter and thus fosters a sense of belonging. It provides you with an opportunity to link with people who have similar likes and dislikes.

Festivals: Festivals have been bringing people closer together since time immemorial. They help to shape the feeling of community. When you go out to celebrate any festival you will definitely interact with different people, make new friends and take part in some activities together. There are certain festivals – like the African Street Festival in Nashville, TN – which are celebrated to propagate cultural heritage and provides a sense of bondage between people who share the same interests, irrespective of community and culture, thus binding the whole human society together. Use social media platforms like Facebook to discover Live Entertainment promotions and learn of Festivals like those provided by “Music City Acts“.

Travel: Traveling lets you view new parts of the world and lets you interact with people you have never met before. Travel is a great way to increase your social engagement as affords you the opportunity to interact with people on a global level. You can learn about their language, their culture and heritage and vice versa.

Family Affairs: In the present day and age, some are too busy to find time to visit each of their family members once a year. Family gatherings – be it a wedding, anniversary or just a simple holiday celebration – lets you engage in a social conversation and take part in different social activities together. These interactions create memories and strengthens the bond between the members.

Social Media: In this new digital age, social media is the new frontier of the majority of social exchanges. Various social media websites are bridging the gap between people and bringing us close together. You can now interact with a total stranger over the internet while sitting comfortably in your home.

Click here to subscribe to jspring74.com – Your News and Information Resource for augmented perspectives and Social Engagement. Also, you can find me online on InstaGram, Twitter, and LinkedIn at @jspring74. For Facebook, my address is /jamesmspringer

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BONUS ACTIVITY (if you’re in the Nashville, TN area this week): http://TigerPride103.com – Instead of driving this weekend, use Uber. Download the app and type in promo code: 9fkpj and get $20 off your first ride! ‪#‎TigerPride103‬

3 – Benefits of Social Engagement

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Social engagement and interaction are essential elements to any life. When you think of spending time with friends or going out to meet new people, you may assume that the only benefit is a fun evening with people that helps to stave off a feeling of social isolation. But, social engagement has many benefits for overall health and can help people to lead longer, more fulfilling, and enriching lives. So the next time you are wondering if you should spend a few hours out on the town with people, consider the many benefits.

By now, most of us are aware of the conditions that tend to cause the most adverse health issues. These conditions include obesity, diabetes, stress, smoking, and other maladies. It’s not widely known or talked about but loneliness and isolation can be detrimental to physical health just as much as those conditions. This is supported by a study conducted at Brigham-Young University and supplemented with a study from BYU and University of Chapel Hill North Carolina which discovered that those people with fewer social connections can suffer a 50% higher risk of dying within the seven year study follow up period. Furthermore, research also suggests that friendships greatly increase your chances for a long and healthy life, more so than even children and other relatives. This may be surprising, but it’s proof that social engagement has a positive impact on more than just the pleasantness from a single day’s interaction.

So the next time you have a bad day and think about the satisfaction and happiness you know you will derive from spending time with friends and being socially engaged, consider that your interactions with friends and even strangers (who could become friends!) actually improves your physical health as well, going far beyond just turning around a bad day. Spending time with friends can also lower your blood pressure and reduce inflammation in your body, which in turn reduces your risk of deadly conditions such as strokes and/or heart attacks.

Another benefit of social engagement is that you often pick up good habits from being around people whose company you enjoy. We hear about peer pressure and how sometimes bad behaviors are reinforced, but the opposite can also be true. When you are around good people, this can influence your own behaviors and help you to make better choices and grow as a person. As well, being around people boosts your mood which can sometimes help with acute instances of depression or feelings of melancholy. When you are having fun and are with people who genuinely enjoy your company, you feel more valued, fulfilled, and worthwhile.

Social engagement is so vitally important for your well being. The more you interact with people, the more you are boosting your mental, physical, and emotional health. Given how much stress can easily seep into our lives these days, it’s so helpful to know that just spending time with people can stave off feelings of depression, protect you from serious ailments, and keep you healthy without needing to resort to medicine or allot money to other health expenses.

Click here to subscribe to jspring74.com – Your News and Information Resource for augmented perspectives and Social Engagement. Also, you can find me online on InstaGram, Twitter, and LinkedIn at @jspring74. For Facebook, my address is /jamesmspringer

Want to be in the know about Social Engagement options attractive to you? Know someone(s) who need to be in the know? Click below to Follow and LIKE Us on the followng Social Networks:

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YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON PERISCOPE FROM YOUR SMARTPHONE. My Periscope ID is: jspring74

2 – Understanding Social Engagement

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Now that we were formally introduced one week ago http://jspring74.com/1-introduction, let’s begin our discussion. This week I will address, “Understanding Social Engagement”.

Understanding social engagement
No matter if you consider yourself an introvert or extrovert, social engagement is something that everyone needs to partake in. For some of us, social engagement is the act of going out on the weekends and hanging out with our friends. On the other hand, for others, it can simply be playing video games over the internet with friends and using a headset. Thanks to technology, many younger generations are finding social engagement on social networks while the older generations tend to stick to face-to-face engagements. No matter what type of social engagement you prefer, it’s something that each and everyone one of us must partake in, in order to keep our sanity.

Similarly to the types of engagement we individually prefer, there is also a variable amount of time that each and every one of us likes to participate in social engagement. For some, it can be dozens of hours per week and for others it can simply be an hour or 2 per week. No matter how you personally define social engagement, after reading this post, you’ll have a much better understanding on the subject.

Social Engagement: A Birds-Eye View
Because the term “social engagement” is such a broad topic, I’d like to break down a few important factors. Have you ever thought about where people socialize and why they do it there? Or have you ever asked yourself the question of why do people socialize in the first place? Let’s take a closer look at these questions individually:

Why Do People Socialize Where they Do?
Bars, festivals, traveling, live entertainment, parties, family events, or any other popular venue or forum are usually places for socialization. People tend to choose these places for many reasons including:

  • These locations/events are normally a neutral spot to meet up
  • There are no “hosts” that have to constantly worry about their guests 24/7
  • Other people provide food and drinks
  • There is a unique form of entertainment that appeals all of the guests

Why Do We Socialize In The First Place?
Simply put, socializing is part of being human. If you prefer small amounts of socialization, consider hanging out with a smaller group of friends. However, it’s clear that socialization is a large part of being human. Some people need to socialize to get through a problem or possibly receive help with something they’re dealing with. Being open with others and having a relationship with them is something that needs to be done in some fashion by every human being.

Conclusion
Social engagement is a very broad topic and every person on this planet defines it differently, but needs to partake in it in some fashion. There are literally endless options in regard to socializing, and it’s something that should not be ignored. All in all, social engagement is part of being human and it’s something that we all need within our lives.

Click here to subscribe to jspring74.com – Your News and Information Resource for augmented perspectives and Social Engagement. Also, you can find me online on InstaGram, Twitter, and LinkedIn at @jspring74. For Facebook, my address is /jamesmspringer

Want to be in the know about Social Engagement options attractive to you? Know someone(s) who need to be in the know? Click below to Follow and LIKE Us on the followng Social Networks:

jspring74.com on Facebook

jmatt Entertainment on Facebook
Music City Acts on Facebook

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YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON PERISCOPE FROM YOUR SMARTPHONE. My Periscope ID is: jspring74

1 – Introduction

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About 9 years ago, I met a guy who was relatively new to Nashville from Florida/Canada/Jamaica. He said to me, “Nashville has so much potential for greatness beyond the Country scene. Why does it seem that this city isn’t abuzz for much other than the Country scene? Isn’t this supposed to be ‘Music City USA’? I mean, I’ve seen a few things here or there that’s different, but not much”. The truth behind his remarks and questions were quite embarrassing. You see, I’m a native resident of the Music City. And frankly, I felt offended after listening to his indirect inquiry of why a person of my presumed stature would remain in such a place. I knew his intentions were not to offend, but that didn’t make me feel any better. My reply to him; “well, there’s more going on here than meets the eye. You just have to be willing to embrace diversity.” He looked at me as if insulted and said, “Man, I’m from Florida/Canada/Jamaica and spent significant time in Alabama. I think I definitely qualify as one who embraces diversity”. I said, “That may be true of you, but that’s certainly not the case as it relates to the ‘would-be’ socialites in this town”. He then asked, “Well then, what’s the problem”? I stated, “I think the residents here have a restrictive mindset stemming from generations long before you and I were thought of. We know that we’ve grown considerably as a nation, but some regions are clearly much further ahead in their psychological development”. He replied, “So you’re saying that Nashville is a very racist place”? I said, “Racism exists everywhere, but I don’t see it as the mass reason for our local disconnect”. Personally, I believe racial relations have improved and are improving across the board. I don’t know that we will ever do away with it completely, but the efforts are there. I believe the larger communal issue centers on the displayed behaviors of elitism, anxiety and ignorance vs the smaller (though significant) levels of hate. Lest we forget, Nashville is also considered “The Buckle of The Bible Belt” as is explained within this URL: https://goo.gl/SSx82T. This fact has as much to do with area practices as any. He asked, “Well, why aren’t you fixing it? What needs to be done about it? Didn’t I just learn that you are a promoter? I gather now that you’re terming this problem as the ‘psychology of the community’. So what are you going to do about it”? I replied, “If I had the answer to that, Nashville would be much better and I’d likely be RICH”! That conversation reignited a spark within me; one that I hadn’t felt as strong since my 2nd year of college. It evoked desire and passion to do something about this undesirable truth. “How do you change the local psyche” became the question of the hour. I decided that for starters, a long-term resolution had to begin with conversation. But then the question became, “how do you get neighbors and strangers to converse”? Chief amongst my issues are the reasons/excuses people choose not to socially engage (ex., Age, Professional Perception, Family Responsibilities, Religious Interpretations, etc.). And then, it hit me: You find creative ways to inspire, promote and educate them on the necessities of social engagement. On many occasions, I’ve witnessed the concession that we don’t have many intelligent reasons to feel anxious around one another after healthy interaction. Most of our causes, desires and many of our beliefs are common/mutual or at least, respected. When that becomes understood, things like elitism and ignorance begin to dissipate. With that, I decided to do my part to answer the bell by bringing people together to Socially Engage in ways that I can. In an effort to encourage this interaction, my goal is to educate, inspire, entertain and persuade my audience to DESIRE ENGAGEMENT via a weekly blog. For starters, my requests of you are to Self-Evaluate Critically, subscribe at jspring74.com and WhiteList (add) info@jspring74.com (jspring74) in your email address book. Looking forward to having you Join The Conversation.

South Beach Vacation 2014 – Day 2

Fun in the Sun

Fun in the Sun

Day 2 – SLEEP DEPRIVED is how we started this day. Romulus’ sister is a Atlanta resident who was kind enough to navigate us through the DANGERS and RIGOR of the city’s AM Rush to Hartsfield-Jackson Airport. Soon after we entered, we saw employees with recognizable faces, so we stopped them and asked, “hey, did you go to TSU”? Our suspicions were confirmed with an embracing “yes. Yes I did. I think I remember y’all from campus too”. Secretly, I think we all wanted to breakout to TSU Funk. But we calmed ourselves and keep it moving towards our departure gate. Besides, with all of the TSA – Homeland Security in the building, we deemed it best not to bring attention to ourselves. After surviving the long checkpoint lines, we made it to the boarding area where we ran into our brother from another mother, “WHATTAYAKNOWJOE” who was on his way to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. We fraternized for while as we waited to board our respective planes, had some Chic fil a biscuits and enjoyed the ATL airport “scenery”. 🙂 Our festive mood was briefly interrupted as Romulus and I were waiting to board our plane. A white lady who appeared to be 60ish shoved her way between the two of us and a black sister from NY. While doing so, no apology was offered. She only remark (in a nasty way) “let me through, I’m late”. Our chests swelled but we refrained from reacting because our NY sister reminded us that we were still black and TSA was everywhere. Right after that, we had a scare. Because we’d made the unwise decision of booking seats on the plane with a seat between us (we’re not exactly small guys), it appeared we were about to have a female undesirable seated between us. Thankfully, we were wrong. We had actually booked side by side seats instead. We joked on the plane that our air pilot should have been pulled over mid-air by a plane police. This is because we left ATL on-time but about 75% into the flight, we learned that we were 45 mins ahead of schedule. Our pilot was FLYING (literally and figuratively). [Sidebar: My phone will no longer charge my cell, but I refuse to file an insurance claim for another one because I’m eligible for an upgrade in September. So, I have a wall charger that externally charges the battery-ONLY]. My cell died on the plane ride from ATL to Ft. Lauderdale. I wanted to charge it at the Ft. Lauderdale airport, but it has distinctive lights and some blink. I felt would alert TSA, so I decided against it in the baggage claim area of the Ft. Lauderdale airport. Seriously, this wall charger looks like an electrical explosive of some kind. Initially, we were going to BALL OUT and rent a Benz for the weekend until a friend of Romulus’ talked us out of it. He’s a resident of Miami and strongly suggested we wouldn’t need a vehicle at all during our vacation. He talked us into catching the Tri Rail shuttle to the Tri Rail Station. This fine, Fine, FINE Latina chic asked to sit beside me on the shuttle to the station. You know this hurt my feelings, right? But, I was behaved. 😉 I simply enjoyed some humorous conversation with her. When we arrived at the Tri Rail station, we knew instantly that the train ride was a very good idea. Whites, Blacks, Haitians, Latinos, Errrbody started taking really good care of us. They weren’t employees, but normal/everyday residents of Ft. Lauderdale. Figuratively, they held our hands and told us everything there was to know about where and how to take the Tri Rail train. One of them even bought me a energy drink and stated, “you’re gonna need this if you’re going to South Beach for a few days”. 🙂 It simply made us feel welcomed and embraced (contrary to how we feel at home sometimes). The train ride was cool. We were afforded a pretty good look at the inner city of Ft. Lauderdale. When we arrived at the train station in Miami, a shuttle awaited to transport to Miami Airport. From there, we used the Uber app to take us to our lodging quarters. If you don’t have his app on your phone, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you get it. Our driver was from Venezuela. Very cool and informative guy. He also treated us very well. We have now arrived at our lodging quarters. BEHOLD! – The Conrad Miami. Ooooo WE! This place is INCREDIBLE! We pulled up at the front door and was immediately approached as if we were Jay-Z and Kanye or somebody. Really! It was like that. Romulus looked at me and I look at him. We said to each other, “who he “bleep” are we”??? 10-Star courtesies and pleasantries were extended by the bell hops, and the Concierge staff are platinum star professionals. Different from many places, the Concierge Desk is on the Ground floor while the Guest Services/Checkin desk is on the 25th. We were upgraded to Diamond status and given a room on the 22nd floor with an Ocean View (as in the Atlantic Ocean) of South Beach. The room is immaculate! <-- Nuff Said! I've had the fortune of lodging in even grander quarters, but this is pretty top notch. After we cleaned ourselves up, we visited the concierge for suggestions on where to eat and drink. We were given VIP passes to The Blue Martini Lounge (we haven’t made it there yet, but intend to) and directed to TRULUCK’S. The ambiance, service and food were Best In Class! We had REAL Oysters in a half shell, REAL Crabcake (no batter), Sauteed Chicken, Steak, and a recommended seafood melody (I can’t remember the name of it). There was live music featuring softer renditions of Lauryn Hill, Boyz II Men, Erykah Badu, Marvin Gaye, Babyface, Tony Braxton and other soulful artists. <-- THIS! I fell in love with. After dinner, we were referred to The Brickell District for live outdoor entertainment and a spirits store to purchase libations. 🙂 GJ and Henney on deck. After enjoying the district, we returned to our lodging quarters for drinks and laughter. We intended to go back out (possibly to The Blue Martini Lounge) but decided the next day would be the better time to engage there so we drank ourselves to sleep. Day 3 is when it started to get REALLY good. Stay tuned…..

South Beach Vacation 2014 – Day 1

Fun in the Sun

Fun in the Sun

Decided on a whim to vacation in South Beach Miami, FL for Labor Day weekend. Day 1 – Drove to Atlanta, GA from Nashville, TN with my friend Romulus for a networking affair for professionals. My business is my network, so I never stop working in that regard. One of the highlights of this 1 day stay was suppose to include a Lamb Burger from Cafe’ Circa. I LOVE THIS BURGER, but the restaurant is currently CLOSED for remodeling. Imagine my disappointment. So, we ended the evening on the roof top of STATS Restaurant and Sports Bar enjoying the company of a local resident and a good friend. She’s a great conversationalist, resourceful and a REALIST! We can all attest that the food and VIEW was AWESOME. We enjoyed ribs, sauteed steak tips, collard greens and chicken wraps. Because Romulus and I are Jack Daniels connoisseurs, we enjoyed a drink that included Jack as the primary liquor in a melody called, “RBI”. Flat Tire beer was at the table also. After hours of conversation and a little non-purpose driving around downtown Atlanta, we finally called it quits at approximately 2:00 AM. We knew that our “RUSH HOUR IN ATL TRAFFIC” commute to Hartsfield-Jackson Airport was swiftly approaching, so the night ended prematurely (for us). Four hours later, DAY 2 began. Stay tuned…..

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