Welcome to the Academy of Ancient Reflexology’s Blog! I’m very excited to “start blogging” with you!
Before I started creating this project, I knew very little about blogs. Actually, the truth is I knew nothing! With the tireless and patient help of my trusted friend and web mistress, I have slowly figured out enough to start. I know that some of you reading this are in the same boat, so I want to give you some simple instructions on how to navigate and participate in this blog, without having to set forth on the same trial and error approach that I took.
But first my reason for starting a blog:
I sometimes compare learning to breathing. In the act of respiration we take in life-supporting air, and then extract and use the chemical components our bodies need. With exhalation we give CO2 back to our environment for its use.
I think learning is very similar. The student listens to and absorbs information (inhalation). The instructor shares her expertise (exhalation). Authentic education is a collaboration though. Long periods of listening result in listlessness and boredom for the student. Lecturing for hours on end is exhausting for teachers. Both inhalation and exhalation are necessary to complete the cycle of respiration and the circle of communication. A one-sided conversation or half of the respiration cycle just doesn’t work.
Earlier this year, I started to think of the Academy’s e-newsletters in that light. I’ve been “talking” for almost three years. It’s your turn now! I’m eager to hear what you have to say about what I have to say! I want this blog to be more of a place where dialogues are created, not monologues. I want you to be able to voice your comments and/or questions, and I want to learn the relevance of what I’m saying to you and your life.
So, let’s start first with what is a blog? The word “blog” is a shortened version of the noun “weblog”. How I understand it, a blog is an interactive website, one in which individuals like you and me can have an ongoing digital conversation. This is very different from normal websites (like http://academyofancientreflexology.com), where only the creator of the site gets to “talk.”
There are three ways in which to stay abreast of information posted on a blog:
- Sign up for an RSS feed. The feed will deliver a short excerpt of the post and display a Read More button if you wish to read the entire post (and maybe even submit a comment).
If you work with a Mac, the Real Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds blog posts into a separate mailbox in your e-mail program. The Reflexology Blog posts, for example, are dispatched to their own box rather than your general Inbox; you can read them whenever it’s convenient. To subscribe to an RSS feed for a Mac, click on Posts in the upper right corner of this page. On the page that comes up, click on Subscribe with USM. Look on the right sidebar of the page that comes up; under Actions, click on Subscribe in Mail. Done.
It’s a little trickier to do if you use a PC. With PCs, there are several ways to subscribe to RSS feeds, and they can be read through your internet browser or your Inbox, depending on your computer’s software. If you want to subscribe to an RSS feed for your PC, and have never done so before, here are two ways you can do it. Firefox browser users can follow step-by-step instructions on my web mistress’s blog. Internet Explorer and Chrome users can sign up for Google Reader and follow their instructions.
- Sign up to have posts delivered directly to your Inbox. To do this, look to the left of this post in the sidebar: Subscribe by Email. After you sign up and confirm your e-mail address (by replying to the e-mail you receive), e-mails will arrive in your regular Inbox with a short excerpt of the post. A Read More button will take you to the blog site to finish reading the post and give you an opportunity to comment.
(Whether you choose an RSS feed or e-mail subscription, please know that your e-mail address will be used for no other purpose than to deliver the blog posts.)
- Bookmark http://academyofancientreflexology.com/blog. Randomly visit and catch as catch can.
If you read a post and want to share a comment or question (and I sure hope you do!), you will be given the opportunity to do so at the end of every post. All first comments come to me for “moderation”. That allows me to delete comments that have somehow spammed their way in and/or may be offensive to readers in some way. Once your first comment is approved, your future comments will appear automatically. All opinions and comments that are respectfully written will be posted, whether or not you agree with the position others have expressed. I believe that one of the stronger marks of a healthy community is that differing opinions can co-exist, resulting in diversity, open-mindedness and possibility. So, here’s to diversity!
Please be aware that all posts and comments are seen by everyone looking at the site. If you want to communicate privately with me or communicate on some matter different than what we are discussing, visit the Contact page; its link is in the top purple Pages banner.
When you post a comment, you will also be given the opportunity to subscribe and be notified of any future comments posted by me or any other reader on that particular post. That way you can follow the “thread” of the conversation.
Now, take a look at the purple Pages bar up top. Most of the buttons are self-evident; one begs explanation:
Book Reviews: Some of you know me well enough to know that I am not a big proponent of learning hands-on skills through any distance learning medium (books, internet, DVDs, etc.). I have been teaching reflexology for over 20 years and I have yet to have anyone in a classroom that did not need repeated feedback and/or individual instruction. That said, I think books, etc. can be useful as reference, resource and reminders, so watch for future reviews of books that I think deserve a home in any reflexology library. More on that later!
Items listed on the left side bar are also pretty self-explanatory, with maybe the exception of one. Click on the various links to learn more about educational opportunities, other reflexology websites that might interest you, professional insurance options, research, useful stuff, etc.
If you want to read all posts that include a particular topic, say, aromatherapy for reflexologists, then you would click on the word “aromatherapy” in the box under Find Subject by Tag on the left. This wonderful computer program will do all the searching for you and bring up every post that discusses aromatherapy. Of course, before that can happen, I have to write some posts to file under aromatherapy and all the other categories I created!
So, that’s it for now. I hope this inaugural “how to navigate the Reflexology Blog” post has been useful. Please let me know. And let me know what else you may be thinking. What topics would you like to read about? As for me, I’m going to subscribe to my own blog right now and wait eagerly to hear from you!