Categorically Speaking

category 3 by ritchielee on flickrStarting a personal blog requires one to think about the various roles and topics that one might write about. The way you organize all of the random thoughts into some type of organized resource is through categories.

For me, I spent about an hour with my moleskine notebook writing down all of the various categories I felt like future posts might fall into. At the end of my brainstorming session, I had about 35 categories. Way too many. The next task was to whittle them down. This can be both liberating and bittersweet as you put a line through something that you thought for sure would earn a “category” ranking.

In the end, I was left with six categories. The good news is that I am placing no limits whatsoever on my “tags.” This helped me in my quest to keep things as simple as possible on here.

If you’re still interested, here are the six I landed on… (in alphabetical order)

  • Design – For me, design work is a profitable hobby. It is something that I do on the side that brings me a lot of enjoyment both psychologically and financially. The ability to create something that others will use and is appealing to the eye is a lot of fun. This also helps me to fulfill one of my favorite mottos: Find something you like to do so much that you’d gladly do it for nothing, then learn to do it so well that people are happy to pay you for it.
  • Leadership – If you were to walk into my office and look at my bookshelf, you might say the same thing that everyone else says, “Man…you’ve got a lot of books on leadership.” Leadership development is my greatest passion and work in life. I especially enjoy working with students who are learning and striving to grow in their own leadership development. I write a lot on student leadership on my other site ( I know  that much of what I am learning, teaching and writing about in leadership will spill over into here.
  • My Own Muse – Since this is a personal blog, I anticipate writing about what’s going on in my own life from time to time. I will share my perspectives, opinions, thoughts, and ideas. I am hoping this site will be the testing ground for what I’m thinking and trying to figure out in other places.
  • Social Media – I am probably over-connected. Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Flickr, and more and more Youtube. I love to discover the latest software offerings that utilize social networking. I’m even starting my own personal blog. As I learn about what’s coming in the future, I can see myself wanting to talk about it here.
  • Stuff I’m Learning – This category is the culmination of about fifteen items on the brainstorming list. Even the very process of putting this site together has forced me to familiarize myself with WordPress, CSS, PHP, and other tools. I consider myself to be a lifelong learner. I’m also in a place where I am going to be pursuing further education (Doctoral type stuff). I’m sure that will add to this topic.
  • Tech And Gadgets – I am one of those guys that loves electronic toys and all the cool things you can do with technology. For example, I just bought an AirStash (a wifi-enabled SD card reader). It’s not even available yet but it looks and sounds really cool. So…I bought it. When it comes to these types of things, I tend to be an early adopter. In fact, I’m in the process of figuring out when and how I’m going to get an iPad.
  • Uncategorized – I think this category needs a different name. Not sure what to call it at this point. But for anything that doesn’t make it in the top six up there – it will fall in here.

Note: If you’ve read this far, I went ahead and labeled this post with all six categories so that each one would show up in the sidebar. You’ll see that there is a number next to each one. That tells you how many posts I’ve written in each category. Since I’m just starting this site, the categories didn’t show up there until they had at least one post designated.

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