Tag Archives: Friends

The Mysterious Month of Me – Facing Birthday Doubts

The Mysterious Month of Me – Facing Birthday Doubts

The Mysterious Month of Me

I don’t think I’ve ever had a month go by as fast as March has this year. The 1st fatherly Month of Me is complete and it has been one of extreme introspection. I’m trying to figure life out now without snapping at folks or losing my mind. The responsibility of fatherhood weighs on everything I do. Every time I look I’m my son’s eyes I’m dedicated that much more to not give up. Yet and still life is dead set on pushing me to my “adulting” limits. The juggling of family, finances, and feelings can get very tricky.

March does always remind me of a number of standout individuals in my life. I’m thankful for those people and the overall community that stands with me. The emotional pick me ups are clutch at a time when I’m battling serious feelings of inadequacy. The thing is, life doesn’t always provide a guy the outlet to release in the manner needed. I’m approaching a year since I left New Rochelle and so much has changed within me.

SMS MOM DD

I’m attempting not to hold so much inside but that is part of who I am at times. I’m trying to still be true to me in a world that wants my skills and talents but wants it in a different package. The emotions of life and daily economics clash often. It’s a puzzle I’m still working on. All the while Max gets bigger, smarter, more aware…….his Daddy’s story is an interesting one to say the least, but it’s still in its’ opening chapters.

As a new phase of this parenting operation approaches, I look forward to life presenting more opportunities. I also expect life to continue fighting me at every turn. Nothing worth having comes easy. I’ve slowly made moves to reestablish elements of life that make me full like my old self. The evolution of me, the progressive work of Jason continues and I’m looking to let Love, Faith & Family drive me forward.

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A Man Provides…..

A Man Provides…..

SO-YOU-THINK-YOU-A-BIG-MAN-HUH-edited-sm

What matters most in this world? Who matters most? We often find ourselves in situations where our personal priorities trump our general sensibilities. Just how far would you go for your loved ones?

Well said. Pulled from the modern classic “Breaking Bad’, we get a reminder, no a proclamation of what a man does. A man provides no how others may feel about him. That core responsibility to family is so set in stone that gives both of Gustavo and Walter the internal green light to do deplorable things in the pursuit of success.

Have you ever found yourself in such a place? Have you been forced to put your wants to the side for the greater good? Your perspective changes when others are depending on you. I’ve prided myself on being a guardian. Providing safety and reassurance to my people has long since been my lot in life but there is more. The next stage is approaching and I’m not sure what it will bring.

Yesterday in Loreto, Mexico I took part in a morning Sun salutation. This spiritual activity serves as a connection session for personal, spiritual and natural energies. Asking for strength and guidance in the trials ahead. I’ve always said that my only definition to success was to make my people, primarily my parents proud. Life doesn’t just roll out a simple path for you to follow to achieve success. More often than not you will be broken down on a few occasions before you reach your goal.

I believe this breakdown is required. This is the process by which you focus your vision and finally see what and who truly matters. You may very well end up turning off the same people whose opinions were once so important to you and the funniest part is that you will gladly accept that loss for you new-found clarity and purpose.

I’m searching for that with a relative idea of where it is but limited time to get things right. In the end you do what you most even if you go unappreciated for it. A man provides.

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The Year That Tested Me Like No Other – 2015 In Retrospect

The Year That Tested Me Like No Other – 2015 In Retrospect

New Year, New Me right? Ummm maybe, maybe not. 2015 has been in a word “stressful”. On many levels I took chances and gambles to see just what I as made of and how I would deal with life and all it could throw at me. Both personally and professionally I’ve been in positions that were both exciting yet taxing. Some results made my smile, some results made me cry and others just had me asking why.

Freelancing was the business model as every dollar I earned this calendar year was via independent free lance work. I acquired my first long-term consulting client via my Social Media management business. I proved that I could do it and do it effectively. I expanded the #SamuraiRides branch of my brand and grew the following of the site with a steady flow of content like my #SamuraiSitDown series. 

Travel also stepped up a bit this year. I made the decision to cut back on event coverage that wasn’t fiscally beneficial but also decided to give a larger portion of my time to Nomadness. From the Summer BBQ now known as Nomadness Reunion weekend to the massive #UAETakeover in Abu Dhabi & Dubai, the heart of 2015 was spent putting in work to push the growth of the Tribe. All of which led up to the Sept launch of our 1st business conference NMDN.

Last minute trips to Miami and then to Antigua helped give me the little spark that I hope to bring over to the new year. Fingers crossed.

On the surface things definitely looked great. Yet as we know there is always more below the surface. I’ve been looking to take my social media skills to a larger platform. While growing the Social Media Samurai I see so many established businesses that are in dire of digital assistance. The search has been long and frustrating to get in the door. It’s the classic dilemma of people wanting you to have a certain specific level of experience to accept you. There’s no question that I know social media but hiring businesses see a man engaged in freelancing and indie work seems to scare people away.

As much as SMS has done for me it’s still not where I need it to be. From a money making stand point It’s a revenue stream but not profitable enough yet.

The goal is to be able to live a self-sufficient life doing what makes you happy. Sounds simple but nothing is simple these days…especially living in New York.

I won’t lie. I’m feeling real sub par. I’ve always been my own worst critic but by most standards I think I’m not looking too good. On top of that 2016 already promises to be 10X tougher in many areas. I’ve always said I don’t give up and I don’t break but patience is wearing thin. Life isn’t holding back on the tests and challenges and something has to give eventually.

There was also the personal side of 2015. I learned just how far love could go but that it wasn’t the be all of life. Love can feel great yet be equally frustrating. Years of friendship can be interrupted in many ways. Just as you think something is moving in the right direction someone throws you a curve. Pretty much I learned to accept what is given to me. You can’t make adults do what they simply have no interest in.

In spite of all that I’m thankful for the support system I have. I thankful for family and friends who repeatedly showed me love and appreciation through both words and actions. I’m in good health. My heart is in an interesting place but I’ll deal with that and mentally my mind is as (over)active as ever.

A beautiful mess? That might be another way to sum up 2015. I still see the light at the end of the tunnel. I just need to keep pressing on and be more focused and organized. Mental strength and precision in the form of self-control is a key virtue of Bushido. I need to put that into play.

I also believe in asking for help so I’m making a humble request of anyone reading this. If you are a person of faith please toss a prayer in my direction. If you’re not into religion shoot some positive thought in may direction.

Wishing you all Love and Prosperity in 2016.

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Everyone Needs A #MonthofMe

Everyone needs a #MonthofMe

#MonthofMe

They call it Pisces season, the final days of winter and the ushering in of spring. For me it’s my Birthday month and a period that for the past few years I’ve labeled the #MonthofMe. Initially this was just a cute way to indulge in Birthday celebration antics well beyond the usual few days most people give towards their special day. With time this has evolved into much more then reason to drink & socialize more although that does happen. It’s really become a space for me to sit down look at myself and examine who I am, what I stand for and am I doing what I need to do to move towards where I want to be. It’s also I time that I stop and look at those around me and measure the input and output of energies between us.

As my personal new year begins I’m now 34. Surprisingly a number of folk don’t believe this so I’m happy for that but in all seriousness there is another phase of life I want to enter and everything I do now has to result in preparing for that. I’m in no rush for a family but there is an increasing awareness to that end goal related to the work I’m doing now as I chart my course in life. There are mountains I need to get past and goals I need to reach. Recent interactions with specific people have really shown me a lot about myself regarding my mental and emotion ability to adapt to situations.

In addition I’m grasping and understanding certain powers and forces that I need to be careful with in how I apply them. It’s all pretty trippy to be honest. I’m a long way from that skinny shy kid with glass back in Jefferson Elementary School.

I honestly think the #MonthofMe concept should be embraced by all. Stop for a moment and think to the last time you worried solely about yourself. Not in a selfish manner but when was the last time you got up and said today will be all about me? We get so caught up in the rat race that we can go massive lengths of time with treating ourselves. I’m a reformed member of #TeamNoSleep. Be clear that that lifestyle will kill you eventually.  Embrace rest, embrace stillness and quiet. Build it into your schedule and lock it in as you would any other vital meeting or appointment.

When the #MonthofMe ends I ideally want to be refreshed in myself, my direction and my relationships. My 30’s have injected new life into me that I didn’t expect in the form of Nomadness. The way the Tribe randomly reaches out with words and expressions of love and support is something I often struggle to put into words. I’m truly not worthy. There have been others to step up and in their own ways earn a special place with me. There are people who I’ve known for years that I want to link back up with. I need and want to know where I stand with those that matter to me. Spring cleaning is another element of the #MonthofMe

Call it what you want but I truly hope you all invest the same time and energy for yourselves that the world asks of you for so many other things. You all deserve it/ Not just for a month but life. Get back to putting you at the front of the line.

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Romantic Restaurants Across the United States

Romantic Restaurants Across the United States

Romantic Restaurants

 

Want to find a great place to take your Valentine this holiday? Look no further! Members of Social Fabric have found places all across the United States that are romantic and perfect for a lovely date night! Just find your local area below and see what fabulous places it has to offer. You can make it a night to remember! #Dinner4Valentines

 

Northeast Region

Eastampton, New Jersey – Dawn from A New Dawnn

Jersey City, New Jersey – May from La Vie En May

New Rochelle, New York – Jason from The Social Media Samurai

New York, New York – Ginnie from Hello Little Home

Unadilla, New York – Miranda from Cookie Dough and Oven Mitt

Reading, Pennsylvania – Betsy from Heavens to Betsy

York, Pennsylvania – Sarah from How I Pinch A Penny

East Greenwich, Rhode Island – Kristin from Mama Luvs Books

Newport, Rhode Island – Stephanie from Mammamoiselle

Providence, Rhode Island – Mary from Tall Mom Tiny Baby

 

Midwest Region

Barrington, Illinois – Teresa from Tiaras & Tantrums

Chicago Area, Illinois – Michelle from Honest and Truly

Chicago, Illinois – Kelly from Kelly’s Lucky You

Chicago, Illinois – Jen from Fashionably Employed

Miami County, Ohio – Linette from The Home and Garden Cafe

Columbus, Ohio – Abbey from The Cards We Drew

Columbus, Ohio – Carissa from All in All

Troy, Ohio – Kendra from A Proverbs 31 Wife

Omaha, Nebraska – Mary from Living A Sunshine Life

Omaha, Nebraska – Lisa from Mom on the Side

Box Elder, South Dakota – Melissa from Kids Are Grown

Madison, Wisconsin – Jessica from All She Cooks

 

South Region

Birmingham, Alabama – Jennifer from Simple Hacks Living

Northwest Arkansas, Arkansas – Jamie from Jamie’s Thots

Pea Ridge, Arkansas – Robyn from Create it. Go!

Boca Raton, Florida – Shaina from Take a Bite Out of Boca

Bradenton, Florida – Kelly from Virtually Yours

Lee County, Florida – Krystal from Krystal’s Kitsch

Mount Dora, Florida – Sherry from Family Love and Other Stuff

Pensacola Beach, Florida – April from Frugally Green Mom

South Florida, FloridaMelissa Ann from The Eyes of a Boy

Tampa Bay, Florida – Lauren from Lauren Paints

Tampa, Florida – C. Lee from Helicopter Mom and Just Plane Dad

Augusta, Georgia – Candy from Candypolooza

Annapolis, Maryland – Ashley from Momma Rambles

Frederick, Maryland – Terri from Housewives of Frederick County

Durham, North Carolina – Jen from Jael Custom Designs

Memphis, Tennessee – Pamela from Still Dating My Spouse

Arlington/Ft. Worth, Texas – Danita from O Taste and See

Austin, Texas – Lani from Life Anchored

Dallas, Texas – Heather from Dallas Single Mom

Dallas, Texas – Emily from Fortuitous Foodies

Denton, Texas – Stephanie from The TipToe Fairy

Fort Worth, Texas – Julie from Julie is Coco and Cocoa

Houston, Texas – Christine from Xtine Danielle

Houston, Texas – Kelli from Eat, Pray, Read, Love

San Antonio, Texas – Sara from Sensibly Sara

Richmond, Virginia – Jen from JVKom Chronicles

 

West Region

Anchorage, Alaska – Laura from Day by Day in Our World

Chandler, Arizona – JoAnn from A Whimsicle Life

Phoenix, Arizona – Michelle from Fun on a Dime

Los Angeles, California – Stacy from Fancy Shanty

Rohnert Park, California – Jamie from Minnesota Girl in the World

Sacramento, California – Brandy from Gluesticks

Santa Clarita, California – Carolyn from This Talk Ain’t Cheap

Temecula, California – Kara from Ramblings of a Marine Wife

Victorville, California – Holly from Our Holly Days

Denver, ColoradoCallie from A Sweet Potato Pie

Missoula, Montana – Patty from Broken Teepee

Orem, Utah – Kristie from Beneficial Bento

Salt Lake City to Provo, Utah – Marissa from Raegun Ramblings

St. George, Utah – Kendra from The Things I Love Most

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Just Because I Mute You Doesn’t Mean We’re Not Friends

Just Because I Mute You Doesn’t Mean We’re Not Friends

mute

With the exception of a handful of people the vast majority of our communication seems to happen via social media. It may be on a desk top, lap top or more and more on a mobile device. These are the tools that are connecting us. With sites such as Facebook, Twitter and IG setting the communicative tone for so many people there’s a new reality that many of us have become aware of and many struggle to figure manage. This issue is what I call “Friend Filter” and it can often be a vital tool in the new age friendship.

Now that we “follow” people 24/7 in the digital space we give up a degree of immediate control over what we are exposed to. We navigate timeline and news feed where we never know what we are going to be exposed. The quality of the folk we follow defines the general type of content we’ll be exposed too. It’s people patterns, after a while you know who is who and what certain people are likely to post up for the Internets. I personally feel I have a nice mix but there are still periods where folk get in a zone of sharing thing I not only have no interest in but it’s just annoying. If this is coming from a friend it apparently causes a dilemma for some folk.

Not too long ago I was asked “Is it messed up to mute or block a friend online?” My reply came pretty fast. “No, not at all.” Now let me add some context. I don’t block people I’m actually cool with. I don’t get into many issues with folk online. I’ve maybe blocked 5 or 6 people ever and it was always a stranger reaching out to argue over nothing…..usually sports related. To me a block equals I never want to see or hear from you again. On the other hand mute equals I don’t want to hear/see what you’re sharing at this specific period of time. There’s NOTHING wrong with that. People that you love with all your heart can still annoy you. I assume that I annoy folk at times. It’s what humans do. You may be gushing on and on about your relationship, you may be rambling about side chicks, you might be on a social or political soap box, there’s any possible number of subjects that my make me or anyone else turn off your feed. Think back to how we grew up. You were with your good friends all the time. Fights happened often because we don’t always agree. Now that distance is such a factor in our communications you can avoid fights by just filtering what you are exposed to.

Everyone has the right to say what they want so telling a person to stop posting something never really works. Leverage the things you have control over. Watch what you take into your system vs trying to dictate what others create. Being 100% honest I told a friend before that I had to mute her. She wasn’t mad and actually admitted that from the outside looking in she probably would have muted herself too. We’re still learning how to live with this new degree of free communication so don’t feel bad if you have to put someone on a time out. Your personal sanity and friendships will be better off for it.

 

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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Friends, Lovers and the Samurai on the Side

Friends, Lovers and the Samurai on the Side

Friends

Hump Day seems as good a good as any for some relationship type discussion. First off this isn’t a side chick post if that’s what you’re thinking. This topic was actually requested of me this morning. The question I received was….

“Jason, as best good friend to many women, have you ever had awkward moments with their new guy.”

As a general answer no. I have never had awkward moments. I don’t see any reason to but I have been in simple misunderstandings and situations that’s required me to clarify some things.  Other folk sometimes assume things that weren’t the case. It’s really a matter of basic respect and common sense, laced with my own views on relationships. Many people think that the moment you engage a person and get into something with them that every friend you have is just automatically supposed to love this person as you do. I see that as being a little naive and unrealistic. As friends, until you’re shown a reason not to, it’s your role to be respectful that’s all. Liking the person isn’t a requirement and it was to be earned.

As a man I already get the funny reactions from the new guys in the picture with my lady friends, but those that are able to put 1 and 1 together see very quickly I have enough on my plate as to not worry about me. One thing I will say is that I don’t really make it an issue or point to go out of my way to get to know this person. It’s nothing personal I just don’t see it as my job. Things like that happen naturally. You’re dealing with my friend now so if things go good with y’all we’ll cross paths when we’re supposed to and things will be great. Truth be told it’s more so my friend’s position to big up this new person and create that environment of bonding. We’re not kids anymore so truthfully until a relationship really shows its potential of being something long-term and serious, there’s no need for me to invest too much too early.

I had this convo with one of my boy before. He understood it 100% but told me it does sound a bit “cold”. Perhaps it cold but to me it’s more so protective. Feelings, love, we all know what it can do to people. With me being that friend that folk turn to, the truth is that I get told more of the bad things that happen then the good. That’s just how it is, most of that good stuff is told to girl friends, so I’m rarely given reason not to be cautious. I’d rather be cautious now and see things work out well in the end then assume great things now just to see it fall apart. Another thing from my perspective is that I’m that objective male voice that tells not what a person wants to hear but what is needed. When the red flag appears there is no emotion that makes me look past that issue. Often it’s the thing I speak on the 1st time that comes up again and again but feelings won’t let folk walk away from the situation.

I’ve experienced both sides of this position. I’ve seen people link up and over time everyone is cool. Families get created and it’s all love.  I’ve seen people link up and basically have to watch a situation walk the fine line of abuse. People sometimes have to go through things themselves to decide what is or isn’t for them. It can get difficult because in the midst of turmoil many a person will side with their current partner vs their friend of many years. Feelings do that sometimes.

My end goal is to see my friends happy. As long as they’re being treated well I’m not really concerned with who it is that provides the happiness. As a friend that is the ultimate “Social” duty of mine.

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai

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The People of my Year – 2013

The People of my Year – 2013

People

The final hours of 2013 are counting down. I know many of my folk are spread across the globe so to those already in 2014 I wish you Happy New Year. As I take in this day and the what this passage of time means to me I always come back to the people. It’s those that I’ve interacted with that made 2013 a landmark year in my life. To that end I put together a little slide show of the people who made 2013 great for me. I got a lot of folk but not everyone as some experiences didn’t result in pictures but regardless of that I thank you for being who you are. Through good, bad and ugly you all have played a role in my growth and evolution.

I wish love, joy, peace and happiness to you all. I’m looking forward to what 2014 has in store for us.

The Social Media Samurai’s People of 2013 from Nightfall 914 on Vimeo.

Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai