About Trying Not To Be Negative

We all face questions everyday. BNeg helps people determine how they will handle situations in their lives such as their treatment of others, volunteering in community, raising their children, or finding their faith, by sharing personal experiences, reflecting on everyday situations, and analyzing current research.

Yoga TeacherCindy at Visarts sm

You’ll also find lots of information about yoga on this blog! I started practicing yoga in 2000 by taking a prenatal class through the County Recreation program. After a few years of private practice in my home, Susan Bowen at Thrive Yoga invited me to join one of her classes and history was made! When I teach Yoga, Pranayama (breathing), & Meditation classes, I teach them “to the room” meaning I assess my students’ needs and adjust to their abilities. These days people always want to know what kind of yoga you practice. Personally I practice Baptiste-inspired Power, Vinyasa, and Hatha, but my training included studying many kinds of yoga such as prenatal and restorative. I enjoy teaching all levels of students and love giving Beginners the ability to be intuitive about their practice instead of spending the whole time in their heads trying to remember and do the different body positions. My emphasis is always on creative, themed class sequences such as my successful Chair Yoga for Seniors, Yoga as the Art of the Body, Be A Part of the Art Yoga, and Animal Yoga for Kids.
200 RYT with the Yoga Alliance
500-Hour Teacher Training at Thrive Yoga, Rockville MD, Completed in November 2013 awaiting certification.

About My Consulting Services, Online and In Person, LLC:

My journey with each client always starts with a conversation. Professionals, businesses, and organizations all have different goals but the same tools are available to meet them. Together with my clients we fill classes, gain customers, market books, streamline websites, gauge interest, and strengthen community. I create the message and promote each endeavor with the words and images to create the right message. Services: Communications plans, email campaigns, public relations writing, photography, blogging, and events.

Writing, Community Building, and Management

1-1-1- screen zoom inAs Co-Owner and Editor, I managed  a local community site, Rockville Central, from June 4, 2007 to October 14, 2011. In 2007 a friend, who had moved to Maryland from California, encouraged me to start a Rockville blog since I had all the answers every time she needed to know something about the area. I researched the websites she suggested and began to visualize all the features which would make a Rockville website useful for the City. After reading an article on local blogging in The Washington Post on Sunday, June 4, 2007, I cut it out, put it on my nightstand, and knew she was right! The next morning I turned on my computer with the intent of making my vision a reality and I had a message from a fellow cub scout volunteer that he had started a neighborhood blog for people living close to him around his son’s elementary school. Instead of starting my own website, I joined him on that first day and convinced him to change the blog to my vision of a vibrant site for the entire City of Rockville. Due to my ideas, we expanded the types of coverage as well as the coverage area. I generated and wrote articles on local news, politics, elections, development, city and county issues, events, recreation, entertainment, business, crime reports, and volunteer opportunities, as well as managing contributor opinions. Rockville Central was one of the Five Most Read Community Blogs in Maryland (as surveyed by Maryland Politics Watch). We created this community hub to give people a civil and courteous way to participate in our community. People found out what was happening, got involved, and expressed their opinions. We successfully reach out to the community through the network media, such as the Twitter account I created in 2007. On March 1, 2011 we decided to publish exclusively to a Facebook page and froze the website. We viewed our move to Facebook as successful. The members of our community posted photos, questions and links on Rockville Central and other people responded. We also had first-hand news accounts from readers with their cell phones. Our active users increased by over 500%. We went from about 24,000 hits a month on the website to 100,000 post views a month on Facebook. A single post on Facebook typically received over 2,000 views.

As Style Editor of Rockville Living Magazine, I wrote about trends in our City in 2010. The magazine added content to this local event and business directory. We had a positive approach for promoting the best in our community.

Workshops, Speaking, and Public Presentations

Teaching is very important to me. I love to speak with groups about my community experience, social media, blogging, healthy yoga habits, and trends. Workshops and presentations on all aspects of my work help people use available online tools more effectively.

Speaker, Montgomery County Planning ReThink Series on Knowledge. April 8, 2010
Technology is changing the way we communicate. Our news sources are shifting from print journalism to blogging. How does this transformation affect the field of planning? Does blogging help bring in a broader pool of participants and ideals? Does it make planning more accessible and equitable? Join five local bloggers as we ReThink the way knowledge is shared in Montgomery County.
Speakers: David Alpert (Greater Greater Washington), Cindy Cotte Griffiths (Rockville Central), Dan Reed (Just Up the Pike), Eric Robbins (Thayer Avenue), Barnaby Zall (Friends of White Flint). Watch the video here.

Speaker. DC Social Media Club. September 14, 2010
“Thinking about starting a blog? Wish you existing blog had more readers or comments? Wondering just how the city’s successful bloggers ever have the time to do such good work? Find out all this and more as recently-launched, local news startup TBD and a few excellent DC area bloggers tell you the secrets to their blogging success. They will talk about how to get started blogging, crafting great posts, using social media to market your blog and how they fit blogging into their day (on top of full-time jobs, families and other commitments).”

Speaker. Montgomery College Class On State and Local Government. March 2010.
“Social Media and Building Community: A Look At Rockville, Maryland”. The presentation includes Volunteer and Government Use of Social Media, Outreach with Social Networking, Building Community, and Results.

Co-Moderator and Designer. Candidate Forum for the City of Rockville Elections. October 24, 2009.
This forum stepped outside the typical offerings and was informative, interactive, and fun.

My Background

I have more than a decade of experience successfully working in all areas that are important to organizations from fundraising to communicating. My dedication to my work always improves each organization and its mission. My experience includes successes at a variety of community groups and non-profit organizations.

Some Wonderful Organizations I’ve helped make successful:

Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless, which needed to engage the community and raise funds in tough economic times, so I coordinating all their special events such as annual dinners, shelter walks, and conferences, and developed their complete social media presence.

An AmeriCorps program called Community Year which was a cool opportunity for 17-to-23 year olds to spend a year helping in Montgomery County, MD, so I planned, recruited, and organized to make it possible.

Montgomery Housing Partnership, a nonprofit developer of affordable housing, that I joined back in the beginning to handle all the non-profit responsibilities, but I also raised money with special events, wrote public relations materials, and managed a housing program.

The Wilderness Society, which watches over our public lands, so I helped with development and foundation/corporate fundraising.

My Personal Community Involvement

Chair of the Rockville Human Service Commission 2007 to the present
Together we advise the mayor and council on human service issues to ensure that all residents of Rockville have the opportunity to live to their full potential.

Communications Chair, Montgomery Women Board of Directors 2010-2013
Advancing women in volunteer, board, and elected positions in Montgomery County, MD.

Outreach and Special Events Coordinator at Our Elementary School 2004-2011
Through personal contact with parents, I expanded International Night, transforming the event from a dinner to a full festival with interactive displays from parents representing over 20 countries, and dinner and live entertainment for over 500 people. Worked with teachers, parents, and staff to find ways to welcome all parents at our school, resulting in the formation of African American and Hispanic Parent Networks.

Leader and Committee Chairman for My Cub Scout Pack 2003-2011
I’m the “leader of the leaders” and plan all activities for this thriving Pack. Due to our successful recruitment efforts, a 35% increase in membership required the complete re-evaluation of all policies and programming. Devised and implemented a new adult volunteer program to meet the needs of our Pack by recruiting volunteers to coordinate all activities and training them to be successful. Completely plan and orchestrate campouts for 110 people and dinners for 200.

Coffee House for a Cause 2007
I envisioned, planned, and ran a Coffee House attracting more than 100 people and raising over $2,000 for a South African community living in poverty.

Formal Education on Top of Life’s Lessons

After becoming completely enthralled by a Philosophy class during my first year at Gettysburg College, I fell in love with and majored in the discipline. Since I couldn’t deny my fascination with group behavior, I also minored in Sociology.

For fun you’ll find me kickboxing, running, practicing yoga, painting, and riding a motorcycle.

Contact me: Cindy@onlineandinperson.com

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