Even though the word "lifestreaming" sounds intimidating, it's easy to start. It's the same thing as blogging, but you don't have to write long blog posts. You can just send photos or tweets or videos throughout the day to document what's going on in your world. There are lots of reasons for doing it, too! Lifestreaming can help you be accountable for your choices, increase your self-discipline, & be a great creative outlet (which can lead to things like jobs & money!). Also, lifestreaming starts conversation about the things YOU care about. And now, without further ado, 18 reasons to get on lifestreaming NOW!
- Lose weight. My favorite thing to document in my own stream is my meals. After keeping track of what I eat for a couple years, I am now hyper-aware of what I put in my body & the effects on my health & happiness. It's a great way to stay accountable! I also use Tweet What You Eat to quickly add up calories.
- Start a new hobby. Document the things that bring you pleasure in your free time. Every day when Kelly & I meditate, we take photos of ourselves (I use the Fototimer iPhone app). The photos capture a lot of the mood & help us stick with it!
- Save water. Time your showers to be accountable for your water usage.
- Become a better writer. Writing blog entries & even tweets hones your ability to communicate to others.
- Take control of your finances. Document your transactions. How many times do you spend money a day? On what?
- Fall in love with your body. Take nude photos of yourself! If you're uncomfortable having them be public, save them as private posts, or put them in premium content like I did. Make sure you follow your webhost's Acceptable Use Policy though! I can't post mine publicly on this site right now because Bluehost doesn't allow it–I will be moving shortly ;] Posting nude photos of yourself online is like losing your virginity–scary, thrilling, & actually not such a big deal. It's liberating, I promise!
- Get fit. Track your exercise with Runkeeper. Measuring your fitness progress is a great motivator for improvement! You can also go to your Settings page & share your activities to Facebook & Twitter.
- Express your gratitude. Taking the time to capture mundane moments, ever day meals, or even dreaded chores is an opportunity to reflect on all the good in your life. Taking meal photos is the new grace!
- Get what you want. When combined with the law of attraction, lifestreaming is very powerful! Put out into the universe what you want to get back. Positivity? Good vibes? Comments? Donations? Jobs? Money? Figure out what you want, tell the universe, trust that it's coming to you & you'll receive it!
- Succeed! Visualizing yourself reaching your goals is integral to success. Use your lifestream to record your vision, or try writing some autobiographical science fiction to plan your achievements. It might feel weird, but doesn't designing your own future sound fun?
- Have lucid dreams. Start a special category in your lifestream posts for recording your dreams. The more you remember them, the easier it gets to have lucid dreams. Then you can design your sleep-life too :]
- Bring your entire online life together. If you want to import posts you make to other sites (like Tumblr, Posterous, or Twitter) you can syndicate the RSS feeds onto your lifestream with the FeedWordPress plugin.
- Challenge yourself! I keep track of things like daily pushups, how long I've been vegan, & how many days into our 40 day raw challenge we are with Daytum.
- Make money. Want to have secret, pay-only content on your lifestream? Try the MemberWing plugin. You have to pay for it, but it works really well! The only problem is coming up with the premium content for your subscribers ;]
- Keep a diary. Not only is diary-keeping great for self-reflection, a public diary is an amazing historical document for future generations.
- Augment your memory. Have trouble remembering people's names? Post a photo of yourself with them (& their name!) when you meet!
- Save someone else time. Every experience you document can potentially help someone else in the same situation.
- Work towards world peace. It is here that the true value of lifestreaming begins to reveal itself. In aggregate, billions of people, worldwide, updating their status will transcend what some may call a fad to become something much more meaningful - a massive archive of quantified human behavior. What might the world would look like if everyone was a lifestreamer? If we could quantify and experience the lives and unique perspectives of every person in the world, what understanding might we gain? If 6,000,000,000 people were to lifestream on a regular basis, not only might that trigger Ray Kurzwell’s Technological Singularity, but enable anyone to instantly quantify all human behavior for any given moment in time. Power hierarchies as we know them would collapse. We could identify & remedy patterns that cause poverty, war, & disease. We could all effectively “take the pulse” of the world–and not just for marketing purposes!
Before you start lifestreaming, get yourself set up with a free WordPress.com website to hold all the gems & treasures from your life. As you go through the list below, you can find ways to make your free website into a kickass lifestream. If you're super geeked to get started, definitely get WordPress installed on your own domain name & hosting! That way you can have complete control over the design & code of your site. (Need help with this step? Ask in the comments!)
Once you have your WordPress site (free or self-hosted), it's easy to email photos & other bits from your phone to your site. If you're on WordPress.com, you can Post by Email, and if you're on a self-hosted installation, try the Postie plugin. And now that you have your emails set up, wouldn't it be nice if they also updated your Facebook & Twitter so people can start visiting & commenting on your site? I use the Twitter Tools plugin to update Twitter when I have a new post, & I use the Twitter Facebook application to send my tweets to my Facebook profile.