10 Great Gifts for Geek Girls 2016

Still looking for the perfect gift for your geek girl?  Well I have rounded up a 10 of my favorites, including links so you can order online in time for the holidays.  Enjoy!

1. LifePrint 

Okay so it may not be a wellbeing device, other than it will certainly give you a good serotonin kick from the feel good factor of watching pictures of friends and family come to life and sharing them too.  This cool little device is only available at Apple Stores (LifePrint website is sold out).  At a pretty decent price point ($129.95), don’t forget extra stickyback paper ($49.95 for 110 pack).

2. Docking/Charging Station

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Devices and their chargers can be both hard to keep track of and batteries loaded.  I love having a docking/charging station for them when I get home. (If you have kids, you might want two.) This keeps all devices at the ready for my next adventure, but more importantly keeps me present for my family.  There are many different styles, so rather than take my recommendation, look for one that matches.  I like this combo dock and charger to minimize cables.  Wearable tech is great, but most of them still need to be charged fairly regularly.  Until the battery life issue is fixed, at least you know will know where the chargers and devices are in the house. I recommend picking up a pack of short cables so that you can leave them connected at the ready (Lightning for Apple devices and MicroUSB for back up batteries, wearables and other non-Apple devices)

2. Ring.ly

 

A favorite from last year’s list as a newly launched product.  To Ring.ly, I say, “You’ve come a long way baby.”  They began with a beautiful smart ring and now have a smart bracelet.  More importantly, their notifications are now connected to many more apps, to fit a wide range of needs from rideshare, fitness, dating and more.  Keep that phone in your purse and the ugly black rubber fitness tracker at home.  Control your compulsive phone checking, so you don’t miss the here and now.

4. Cord Keeper

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Innovation can be simple to solve the problem of cable tangle.  If you have ever struggled with the tangled cables of your headphones you will love this beautiful leather solution.  Not to mention if you have any challenges with arthritis or poor circulation, they will simplify access to your cords and cables.  You can get them in time to stuff stockings in a five pack for $22.99

5. Stashbandz

stashbandzLast years bomb was the Purse-in-Boots that didn’t deliver (sorry I ever recommended them).  But this year I found a more universal solution.  To keep your smartphones at the ready, how about a garter or boot liner with a pocket instead.  Stashbandz Boot Cuff let’s you have a pocket in any boot. And for those times when you aren’t wearing boots, but rather a dress with no pockets, try the  Stashbandz Garter Purse.  I have been eyeing both for a while, and think it is time to go for both.  With the phone size increasing, most pockets don’t accommodate it anymore, even some purses don’t. Their unisex waist bands can be a great way to discretely carry phones for men, or even a medical device that needs to be worn.

6. Bellabeats Leaf

It is not so glamorous, but the reality is as women our reproductive health has a huge impact on our wellbeing. It should therefore be part of what we can track and understand.  Bellabeats has not only created a great wearable for women from puberty to menopause, but it is beautiful and something you would enjoy wearing even if it weren’t tracking.

7. Quell Wearable Pain Relief

Chronic pain a problem?  I saw this product before they launched and were still testing.  I have been waiting for it to finally come out, and here it is.  If you have chronic pain, this is an exciting innovative non-invasive approach to pain relief without drugs.

8. Muse: Brain sensing headband

I used these devices in my dissertation study on wearables and presence of mind.  People really loved the experience of learning to meditate in a simple way.  My kids even tried them before I distributed them. I noticed a marked change in their ability to focus and filter out distraction.  Perhaps it was a little competitive mindfulness in who get calm their brain and get more birds in the game.  Nevertheless, an interesting tool for those of us with busy brains.

9. Pwr+ Portable Laptop desk stand

portablelaptopdeskWhether moving ourselves from our seats to fight sitting disease or simply relieving tech-neck, changing the angle at which you work and look at your screen is important.  Many chronic pain issues are either caused by or exacerbated by looking at laptops at the wrong angle.  This one even works in bed if you are having a flair up and need to work from there (or want to watch a movie).

10. Gratitude Journal ~ the original! App

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I looked at paper journals, and there are several really nice ones.  You can choose those with prompts, inspiring quotes or blank.  Reality struck me that if I was to accomplish a practice of journaling my gratitude it had to be through an app.  If I have learned anything in this last year it is to find my happiness and health in gratitude.  So whatever medium works for you, use it.

Note: If your Geek Girl can wait, my personal favorite is the AppleWatch 2.  Unfortunately, they seem to be hard to come by in time for the holidays.

Have a wonderful holiday season. I hope you find many moments to be present with your loved ones and yourself.  Be kind and practice gratitude and giving, even if all you have to share a smile and laughter.   Enjoy!

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Transition to BE-ing@Work in Practice

apple heartAs a result of my research, I have immense respect for the wearable technologies potential to enhance both physical and cognitive function as well as the current limitations.  Completing a PhD takes a toll on the body and mind. I consider myself lucky, as I have many of the tools available to me to monitor this impact and the recovery.

I was profoundly struck by the irony of what now feels like a near miss, just days prior to graduation. Had it not been for the passive capture of my heart rate on my AppleWatch, I would not have been able to share the data with my doctor electronically when things went sour. He was able to both diagnose and prescribe remotely without delay. The issue resolved, but I am now more aware of the benefit of tracking vital signs passively for prevention. I became my own research subject, yet again.

I have shifted my attention back to the wearables, apps and other innovative tech based interventions that complement our wellbeing goals. The book BE-ing@Work is still in the works. As I collect more stories, best practice and insight from the field, I will be ready to share it. In the meantime, I am sharing my research at a few upcoming events. I will be speaking at Virgin Pulse, Thrive Summit 2016, In Boston next week. I am also booked to speak at the Employer Health and Benefits Congress, in September. I hope to see you there and hear your stories about technology and wellbeing in the workplace.

In the meantime, I am working on sharpening my knowledge in corporate wellbeing strategy by getting certified as a Corporate Wellbeing Specialist through Corporate Health & Wellness Association. There is a lot happening in this space from the HR benefits side that can apply my research and crosses over from social strategy and organization change.

Very soon the BE-ing@Work website will be launched. This will have more exciting details about the specifics of social tech and wellbeing in the workplace, new research projects and more. In the meantime, you will still find that here a lot of other things that I have worked on over the last few chapters.

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More than Anecdotal Data on the Visual Practice

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Thanks @OneSquigglyLine for scribing my session!

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Social and Visual Leadership

The paradigm has shifted, and the learning curve is steep. Some will rise and some will fall. Social media marketing is only a small piece of the picture. Understanding that social is people, and people are not just our customers is a start to the journey.

Organizations are made up of people in many different roles. Their jobs require people both internally in the organization and externally in partners, product & service providers, new hires, investors, and so on. Relationships are what count whether business to business or business to consumer, it comes down to people.

Each person has a story that contains knowledge, experience, passions, interests, skills, and people.  Each individual is a unique part of the whole organizations and defines its collective story.  It is this story we share and grow in social technologies.  Leadership must take active part in the story for an organization to succeed in this new paradigm.

Social Optimization, the building and maintaining of MUTUALLY beneficial and effective relationships, is a key behavioral shift when mastering the Art of Social Strategy.  This does not come simply from balancing the gives and takes by counting interactions.  The behavior change must be a result of recognizing the value of all relationships as part of the whole.  It comes from understanding who we are (as individuals and organizations), what we have to offer and what/who we need and how to reach it/them.

Social technologies are tools that help us optimize this change in behavior when we learn how to best apply them.  They simplify our processes for supporting our networks and communities, receiving that support in return.  Sharing knowledge globally through different sensory stimulus has never been easier. It has evolved beyond text.  It is visual, interactive, musical and memorable. Language and time are no longer limitations for creating a global community of advocates.

Understanding who we are and who is part of our story is the first step of the journey.  How you apply social optimization is what will determine your success over the long haul.

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I am a Visual Practitioner

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Perspective without Connection

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Not so easy at it looks

Feeling the weary road warrior (and I know I am far from the worst), I try to seek perspective from that which I experience. In the last couple of months it has been everything from Silicon Valley and the network of industry specialists in social commerce to Kosovo and discussions on social enterprises and change agents to family gatherings in New England, to workshops for leaders in US cable, to local (Malmö, Sweden) discussions on entrepreneurship and social leadership to Abu Dhabi to discover opportunities for knowledge sharing and advising on how social strategy can be used.  My head is spinning, my heart is full and my body is worn out from flying cheap seats and changing time zones.  But the real result is that I feel more inspired to continue my work and the importance on teaching social strategy. Read More

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Reflections on Rise of Social Commerce #rsc10

Here are some my takeaways from the Altimeter Group’s first event, The Rise of Social Commerce in Palo Alto. Before discussing the presentations, I have a few personal reflections. Face time is so critical. Having conversations with like-minded peers is empowering, validating and challenging all at once. Having the opportunity to directly say out loud “thanks for the retweet” with a smile rather than a :), gave me particular pleasure. The quality of participants and the genuine passion for the subject of the new social paradigm was impressive. It was a pleasure meeting you all. I look forward to continuing the conversation. So now to the presentation takeaways (slides and agenda here): Read More

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What is “Social” and why do I care?

Driven by the belief that knowledge is power and sharing is powerful, I dedicate my work to creating better understanding of the social tools that enable sharing of knowledge both in organizations and their stakeholders. The global benefit will be a greater use of knowledge resources to stimulate development and more effective and sustainable growth. Social begins with people.

The tools available today from new media to global networks and their events provide us with the ability to have far greater reach and impact with our social interactions. Handled wisely with strategic forethought, each one of us has the power to be a change-maker. With the right social strategy each organization has the power to make the world a better place, while improving their bottom line.

Social tools are not limited to new media or social media. They are the social interactions we have face to face that we support through online interactions. They are the communities we choose to support and participate it. They are the relationships that we develop and nurture over time that define us and the people that we interact with. They are the opportunities to interact with like minded people. When we understand how to use them more wisely.

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The Art of Social Strategy keynote video

http://sunnyside.vidavee.com/opentext/vidavee/playerv3/vFlasher_debug.swf/p19=movie1274166737848&d=A10E6B63023D8F6FCF76D9DA6A75790C&

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