I am "linked in" - just like 45 million other people around the planet. For the benefit of anyone who isn't one of the 45 million, LinkedIn is "a fast-growing professional networking site that allows members to create business contacts, search for jobs, and find potential clients." In other words, Facebook for the grown up / professional.
It is a strange experience ... posting your profile only to receive a myriad of invitations to join people's networks. I invited some of my former colleagues as well as my friends who are on LinkedIn. The power of the Internet never ceases to amaze me. The very first day, I had a request from an account executive I worked with almost 30 years ago when I was the mail girl. I connected with my writing partner from university, with a woman who worked for me 20 years ago, and a list of other people from my work past.
What struck me most was the level of accomplishment of each and every contact I have ... impressive titles such as president, vice president, director, general manager, CFO ... titles that denote success and status. I chuckled at my own - which pales in comparison. I can remember a time when I thought I was a PIP (pretty important person) and wore a nice professional identifier. But that was long ago and I now live a simpler life that is pretty much devoid of any such identifier or title. The woman in the suit no longer exists. In fact it makes me wonder why I even bothered to join a professional network; why I plunged back into a world I donated to Goodwill.
I am proud of the accomplishments of my friends, coworkers, and class mates. It reminds me that life is passing quickly and along the way, we all grew up - and are now growing older. It feels good to renew old connections and catch up with old friends.
So I guess I answered my own question; I am linked in - not left out!