In Jan. 2015 Barbara Bickel and I began the FM ning. I was then and still am the active moderator. I wrote the above mission to get things started. Now there are 80 members of the FM ning from around the world, from all kinds of backgrounds. I am writing this blog to invite you all to find ways to be more active on the ning. I want a strong social (media) community and more so I would like to see us communicating and connecting and working on projects together to really make a difference in the world that is ruled by excess fear. Things are going to get very challenging in the world crises we face. It is time for groups like the FM ning to pull together, co-evolve and support each other to grow and actualize our aims.
That's why I am writing this blog. On average only 2, 3 or 4 people seem at any one time to actively post things on the FM ning (either a Blog, Discussion, Picture, or Comment). I understand there are diverse reasons people sign-up on the FM ning or on any social media group. Some want to share lots, others don't feel they can share or are shy, cautious or don't have time to. That said, I also believe as mediator of the FM ning and as a leader in the Fearlessness Movement myself that it is my passion to get others involved. I know that little can be accomplished as a movement if others are not feeling welcomed, involved and invited to participate.
BUILDING A STRONG COMMUNITY on social media requires at least two basic things: (1) that members know what the ning is about and feel connected to its mission so they can belong, feel motivated and participate in their own unique ways and (2) that members risk to share about themselves on the ning, share their backgrounds, and at the same time invite others to connect with them for a common purpose.
In regard to the first basic of the FM ning, I ask that you all now and then, especially at the beginning of joining the FM ning, take time to study not only what is going on on the ning itself, reading back posts, etc. but that you read and study the Fearlessness Movement wiki-like description I made several years ago as information on the movement's history and what it could possily grow into so as to make a powerful difference on the planet. Please read Fearlessness Movement (wikipedia summary) --share this with others not on the ning, discuss this with others on the ning, add things to this summary you'd like included by writing a Blog here, and/or contact me firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss it with me.
I realize some FM ning members are new to the whole fear and fearlessness topic and may not feel academic or experienced enough to post things on the ning because maybe they feel it will be judged and criticized. I also realize some may not be experienced writers. Some may not have English as their first language. I will help anyone who tries to write, and you may send me your drafts first and I will give ideas of how to improve it in English. So use me as an editor if you wish before you post.
True, sometimes any social media has people who like to be critics, that is part of community and part of the growth of a movement. It is my job as moderator to make sure these critiques are respectful and constructive and any that are not I will delete and/or ask the critical member to re-write their points in an appropriate way. The aim of the FM ning is to focus on improving our knowledge, connections, skills... and building good relationships where possible to strengthen what we can accomplish together to liberate ourselves and the world--to move from fear to fearlessness. And, so we have to learn how to best do that, and it can be a bit intimidating learning that together--being vulnerable on social media is a good practice. I know there are people on the FM ning now that are very supportive and good mentors for people learning, and I will do my best to mentor and support newcomers especially who may need some guidance to 'jump in'.
WHAT CAN THE FM NING DO FOR YOU?
I think if more of the FM ning members ASK for what you want, the whole community here will grow and support you and your aims more and more. It can be place for you to explore, do research, share and a place for you to heal and overcome fears and realize you are not alone out there. The world is a pretty scary place at times for sure, if not most of the time for some. This social media site is a place for you to be honest, to be angry, sad, fearful... and, then ask for assistance to move forward and growth and learn from all that emotion and bring forward your best thinking--and your ideas for actions to change your life and those around you--in the direction from fear to fearlessness ---and, some say, as do I that that will be to live more and more in authentic love. And, yes, FM ning is support for you on this journey and it is also not a counseling/therapy site either (or only)--because that is another task for other places and yet, we all deserve to be heard around our struggles and challenges and feelings. I have a lot of therapeutic years of experience so I'll make sure you get support in some way and again, you can always share some vulnerable things with me privately on email at first, and then I'll encourage you to shape that and share it on the FM ning because that is the mission--for us to journey together, share together the journey--as much as possible--from around the world. At times, members may even want to form small groups to be more political-activists--and, that's great too. There is no end of possiilities and yet, people have to share here on the FM ning--and/or you can ask people on the ning to contact you in a private conversation by email etc. I know there are likely ways to use the FM ning system to do these things, not that I have figured it out myself yet. You may want to explore those possibilities on the FM ning--and, if you discover cool things of how to form private and small group chats let me know.
WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR THE FM NING?
To balance what the FM ning can do for you and your goals and growth, you'll have to find a way to balance what you can do for the FM ning--which is the same as what you can do for the Fearlessness Movement globally. I have listed a few things you can do below to be an active supporting member:
1. regularly go to the FM ning (once a week at least)--to see what is new there, and/or read past blogs, discussions, browse photos
2. post regularly something on the FM ning and share, about yourself and your interests, your projects, ideas, philosophy, etc. or simply link some other article or event in a Blog on the ning so to invite others to check it out
3. share the FM ning with others who are not members
4. post FM ning link on other websites, Fb etc.
5. offer to help the FM ning (via through me as moderator), which includes outreach activities to grow the movement, to find funding for our activities and future projects, to get an official Wikipedia entry online, to enhance our exposure on the Internet (for the digital savvy) and to also help fund our yearly cost of $300 U.S. per year to run the ning--donations can be sent to me as moderator--again, email me:
So, that's a prompt for all of you to become more involved in the Fearlessness Movement. I look forward to hearing from you and watching your ways of getting involved. -Michael