Assessment Power

Do you remember those bar graphs in school? We all had to learn different ways to monitor progress for a variety of items. I liked the pie charts and bar graphs because they were colorful and made more sense to me. I should say again that they were colorful. Any time I could bring in some creative, artistic stuff into school work, I was great with that!


Many of you that use WordPress know that there is a bar graph showing how many people visit your site. (I guess they are people, I’m hoping they are people!) There is also a cute little map showing where the people are from. I find this highly addicting. Every day I’m drawn to see what the bar graph is showing and what parts of the country have made a visit. “Wow! Someone in Ireland checked out my blog!” That is very exciting for me and a real honor. I always think it’s pretty neat when someone reads something I’ve written. I guess I’m just new enough to this that it still thrills me.

But unfortunately, I’m still human as well. And I notice that when I don’t post for a few days, those cute, little, blue bars get shorter and shorter. And that’s depressing.

We all know and understand that marketing and promoting is very difficult in any area. So difficult that some people have gone to school just for that and they are hired at companies to do only that job. And some make a lot of money doing it. So when you’re trying to market and promote yourself, it’s like racing across a frozen lake in April, just trying to stay ahead of the breaking, disintegrating ice.

Why do we as humans focus so much on what people think? Why are we constantly striving for that reward, acknowledgement, or tall blue line? A friend of mine commented the other night while we were giving a book talk in our little town. She was referring to Facebook and what a draw it it to see who has liked something, or commented. She said it was like receiving candy. And it is! It’s another boost to our over-sugared egos. And we want more and more.

Do we function in such a manner because of our feelings of inadequacy? Is any little positive comment, or pat on our back a reason to celebrate and change the course of our day? And then the reverse be true if someone kicks us in the gut, or tears us down verbally? I would hope not, but I know it to be a fact in my own life. As I’ve aged, the jabs don’t hurt as much as they once did. My skin is a little tougher. But the positive feedback means even more to me.

We are human, and we were created with a soul and emotions. We were designed to be loved and needed. The mean words and actions from others cut deeply. The rewards and encouraging words do make our day, and I’m glad for it. There was a time in my life when those feelings were numb, and I don’t want to go through life in that manner. I want to feel the highs and the lows, the crushing hurt and the exhilaration. It’s what makes this life exciting. The hard times make us appreciate the easy ones. Just as a runner would enjoy a cool drink, a shower and a soft chair after a race, we revel in a time of peace and happiness.

So, I’ll continue to check the little, blue bars on here. I’ll be excited when I see another country check in that I haven’t heard from yet. If the bars are low, it will encourage me to post again. It’s just another way to evaluate my progress and see what I need to be doing. What do you think? (Because I really need to know if you liked this post!)