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How Steem Impacted My Life [Part 1?] by riverflows

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· @riverflows · (edited)
$24.75
How Steem Impacted My Life [Part 1?]
'Huh. I was just reading about this site called Steemit, where you get paid in crypto for blogging', says the husband over his vegemite toast. 

Little did he know that nearly two years later, he would have endured two years of excitement and effusion on his wife's part, having to virtually *pull* me away some days because I've been up to my armpits in posting, commenting, creating and generally *loving* this Steemiverse. Two years. Who woulda thunk it. That's a lot of vegemite toast eaten whilst I breakfast steemed.

![me.png](https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/riverflows/5Huxhmeo-me.png)

In two years, a lot of real life stuff has happened to. My Dad's been close to death and recovered from his cancer. I've battled through anxiety and depression due to work issues and a few other things. A friend has died. My husband's stepfather has died. I've travelled. I've started a community garden. I've wept and laughed and bounced and danced and some days barely got out of bed, but this Steemiverse has always, always been there. 

I think alot about how my growth in the real world over the last couple of years has mirrored my growth on Steem. I started quite *anonymously*, quite scared to reveal my true self, or perhaps just testing the waters to see what would be accepted or not. I was on an all time low confidence wise - work had ripped me apart and made me feel as if I didn't matter much. Writing started to help me *process* that, and the comments added love to my posts. I was *heard*, recognised, seen. People out there felt the same way I did. I wasn't alone. And I had something to say, and people seemed to *care*. Did care. Many friendships have been formed talking in the back rooms of Discord, a kinda add on to the experience where we gather, meet, unify, console, laugh, and generally help each other out. *How has Steem impacted my life? I've always been an outsider. Steem made me feel like an INSIDER.*

I have loved the creativity of people on Steem, and gradually learnt that I had something to contribute to that creative inflow and outflow. Very early on I was making analogies to a wood wide web of funghi and tree roots - a message would be sent out to the steemwoods and everyone would respond. Feeling down? Someone's words would race across the network to help pick you up. Feeling inspired? Someone would take your idea and run with it, adding to it, making it bigger and better somehow because everyone was participating. Need something? People would send money, time, crypto to help people out. Parcels delivered to doorsteps on the other side of the world to *people we had not even met* in real life. Steem wasn't a flat, one way social network - it was a living, breathing, ever morphing gorgeous beast. 

<center>
![image.png](https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/riverflows/yr524cVa-image.png)
</center>

And then there was Natural Medicine, happening by accident, born out of a desire to support people posting specifically on natural healing and health content, from yoga and meditation to herbalism and permaculture. Like the woods, it grew gradually - small at first, then into a larger forest, supported by delegations from people like @pennsif, @theycallmedan and @tribesteemup, and upvotes by the beautifully generous @canadiancoconut and @tribesteemup. This helped us grow so that we could start our own tribe. I could never, ever have done this without my good friend @alchemage, who I've been very close to for the last year or so, and @metametheus, a fellow Victorian with as much enthusiasm as me for this concept, and the chicken lovin' permaculture lovin' @nateonsteemit, who makes me laugh and inspires me with his uber enthusiasm. There's far too many people to name really, helping out this part of our forest, from excellent content curators and steem advocates such as @artemislives, to the broccoli totin', fitness expert @plantstoplanks, our lovely @bewithbreath who runs the meditation group, @vincentnijman and his philosophical, podcast sharing, movie loving, intelligent self, @porters in her boreal forest with pine trees reflected in her eyes, and those who've come and gone to pursue real life demands, only popping in from time to time, such as @walkerland, @mountainjewel and @atreeoflife who we'll hope will be back one day. *How has Steem impacted my life? I am so much less isolated and alone. I'm part of a tribe. Many little tribes, making up one tribe - Steem.*

Starting Natural Medicine was an incredibly nerve wracking thing to do. I had only a small amount of tech knowledge, and not much faith in my own ability to pull this off. I cannot thank @eonwarped enough for putting up with my questions, or @gerber (thanks for screwing stuff up with me) in those early days, or @richardcrill who'd started Weedcash.network before me, or @jonyoudyer's calm presence and enthusiasm (there's quite a few canna crew I could thank, thinking about it! It's a great natural medicine, after all!). I asked a *lot* of questions. I cracked the whip in Team Lotus to get other people to find stuff out for me. But if there's one thing Steem teaches you, is that if you want to do something, just do it. People will come along for the ride if it's worth doing, and if your heart is clear and intentions good, it'll happen. *How has Steem impacted my life? It reinforced in me the need to act with love, always.* 

I took this knowledge out into real life about four months ago when I started our community garden swap meet locally - without having done Natural Medicine, I could never have had the confidence to pull this off, though I'd wanted to for years. You know when you look at yourself from a distance sometimes? I was doing that at the swap meet yesterday, watching me confidently laugh, joke, connect people who hadn't met, share ideas and make people feel welcome, and I realised that somehow I'd become a leader. I honestly did not realise I had this in me. *How has steem impacted my life? I've grown into a self that was in me all along.*

<center>
![image.png](https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/riverflows/HvRMcesY-image.png)
</center>

About a year ago I stopped tracking the steem price or my post payout. Most of my earnings go back into supporting others anyway, and I've never powered down. I delegate half of my 12,000 K steempower to Natural Medicine. Like many people here, we came for the crypto and stayed for the community - and so much more. I stayed because it fits with my 'screw you system' side - why do monopolys like Facebook, who we *know* are corrupt, get all the attention and users? I stayed because censorship is not possible here. I stayed because there's a whole heap of fun to be had learning technology and keeping up to date with that part of our grand world. I stayed for the beautiful content creators, the buzzing, thriving, gorgeous humanity here. It wasn't fake, it was bloody and real. It wasn't static and controlled by an overarching company, it was controlled - is controlled - by us, the people. Ever shifting and ever moving, pulsing, vibrant, alive - the Steemwoods are growing, my Steem friends, and we are here to stay. 



<center>

**This post was created for @theycallmedan - you can read about that [here](https://steempeak.com/steemimpact/@theycallmedan/how-has-steem-impacted-my-life-initiative-extended). Thanks so much for extending the initiative. I've also created a Twitter account so I'll be sharing that there, and on my other social networks too. Really pleased to see how the #posh (proof of share) initiative is working, and I love this 'together we can' attitude on Steem. We are such an amazing big gorgeous tribe - I love you ALL to bits!**

#### Oh, and why part 1? Because I was GOING to do my first 3 speak, but chickened out. Maybe tomorrow. 

https://gateway.ipfs.io/ipfs/QmcGSZxvsXD8YbSCNAo6KWc4a9RjXyRCjWupZdPXJapkXk

https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/riverflows/G7mNMQoW-naturalmedicinebannernew2.png

[@naturalmedicine](https://steemit.com/@naturalmedicine) II [Discord Invite](https://discord.gg/Gy9HFQ6) II #naturalmedicine

![banner.png](https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/riverflows/B32ttzCm-banner.png)

https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmf8f6kHWdcojNS7nFjahNiNm8GwMhMFJNvo8t7k9L7jZr/tabanner-compact-riverflows.png

https://media.discordapp.net/attachments/446343435985879071/570807211115151361/tribe-steemup-banner-NM2.png?width=795&height=225

</center>



</center>
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@tts ·
To listen to the audio version of this article click on the play image.
[![](https://s18.postimg.org/51o0kpijd/play200x46.png)](http://ec2-52-72-169-104.compute-1.amazonaws.com/riverflows__how-steem-impacted-my-life-part-1.mp3)
Brought to you by [@tts](https://steemit.com/tts/@tts/introduction). If you find it useful please consider upvoting this reply.
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@sanjeevm ·
Many people have stayed this way, without watching to the price :) Hopefully, things will be better and better.
👍  
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@riverflows ·
I hope so too but even if it stayed down I still like it better than any other social network I have been on. And I realise I need this online network because it helps me be a better and more connected person xx
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@nickyhavey · (edited)
$0.03
Well I've only seen you a couple of times on travelfeed when I was posting my Australia and NZ travel series but saw you are doing some pretty cool things with @plantstoplanks with the guided meditation and thanks for joining the @yourtop3 contest this month too - all part of the cross collaboration that makes steem a great place to be!

I think I feel a little bit the same way about how steem has made me a little more confident at expressing myself but I have enjoyed working with talented creatives and getting to know loads of different people! I'm glad you have found it to be the same experience in the long run! 

Hopefully we keep in contact more as the year goes on!
👍  , , ,
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@riverflows ·
Yes me too I am really excited about the top 3 as you know. That is what I was trying to say to there is so many fun things and cross posting and interesting people and networks and jumping from one community to the other to hang out with people in different houses . so much fun. I have always admired your work and I do hope we get to know each other more this year as well. I will certainly be posting more travel posts that's for sure as I am not sure I can manage cooking as I travel haha xx
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@nickyhavey ·
There really is a load of interesting things going on and all sorts of interesting people to meet! I think as more development happens here and maybe we don't need to rely so much on Discord for chat purposes (think having the chat on chain is a potential) so it can all be done in one place like with Facebook for example. 

I'm sure we will get to know each other more this year, no dramas 🙂 
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@abh12345 ·
!ENGAGE 25
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@misterengagement ·
<center><div class="center">https://steemitimages.com/0x0/https://cdn.steemitimages.com/50x50/https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmdHfkhCPGYcfUqZqT4Br3nsmCpeVPj1BcLoepVX2PYeAE/engagetoken.png/ </div><br><br> @nickyhavey you have received `25 ENGAGE` from @abh12345!<br>View and trade the tokens on [Steem Engine](https://steem-engine.com?p=market&t=ENGAGE).</center><br><hr><center><sup>This tip bot is powered by witness <a href="https://untersatz.steem.design">untersatz</a>!</sup></center>
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@fionasfavourites ·
I love your tree and woods analogy @riverflows!  Your post echoes a great deal of what I'm saying in my work in progress.  Being on Steemit has opened my eyes to a whole lot of things and to people.  I'm delighted to still be here and to have met you - even though I drop by only rarely!

Be well.
👍  
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@riverflows ·
It is so hard to keep up with everyone and everything isn't it? I think I need to network or but even the little Forest I have is hard to keep up with because there are so many amazing people. I definitely think we will meet more this year. Thanks so much for your kind comment you are really sweet xx
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@steemitboard ·
Congratulations @riverflows! You have completed the following achievement on the Steem blockchain and have been rewarded with new badge(s) :

<table><tr><td><img src="https://steemitimages.com/60x70/http://steemitboard.com/@riverflows/voted.png?202001211211"></td><td>You received more than 140000 upvotes. Your next target is to reach 150000 upvotes.</td></tr>
</table>

<sub>_You can view [your badges on your Steem Board](https://steemitboard.com/@riverflows) and compare to others on the [Steem Ranking](https://steemitboard.com/ranking/index.php?name=riverflows)_</sub>
<sub>_If you no longer want to receive notifications, reply to this comment with the word_ `STOP`</sub>



###### [Vote for @Steemitboard as a witness](https://v2.steemconnect.com/sign/account-witness-vote?witness=steemitboard&approve=1) to get one more award and increased upvotes!
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@yangyanje · (edited)
This great place with such wonderful people truly impacted on me a lot. It's so nice to read how you describe your real life experience and how it ties into the community.
👍  
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@riverflows ·
And you are part of this wonderful Woods as well period was very happy when your branches expected towards us xx
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@plantstoplanks ·
$0.03
Oh boy, here I was about to comment on how delicious your zucchini and fennel pickles looked, and then I read this one and got hit in all the good feels!  I think my boyfriend might also shake his head sometimes at how much zeal I now have for Steem after I was so hesitant to join when he first brought it to my attention.  Funny how things work out sometimes.

You always have a wonderful way with words, and as others have commented, the imagery of the Steem wilderness is just lovely.  Each of your impact statements resonates with me to my core.  I love thinking about having this connection to people all over the world.  Makes it feel a little less vast and a bit more cozy. 💚

Though Natural Medicine is a community with so many people putting in energy to make it successful, you are a huge part of why we all want to give what we can!  Thank you for giving so much of yourself.  It is appreciated greatly.
👍  , , , ,
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@riverflows ·
Thank you so much and I feel the same about you. I honestly could not do what I do without people like you around to help and support. It is just like a forest. Start taking out a few trees and you may as well take out a whole lot because it just won't be the same. I always envy your long and wonderful comments when the most I can manage is a couple of lines haha xx
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@plantstoplanks ·
So true about it being a team effort.  Well I don't always get to comment as much as I like, so I figure I better make it worthwhile when I do! 💚
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@abh12345 ·
!ENGAGE 25
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@misterengagement ·
<center><div class="center">https://steemitimages.com/0x0/https://cdn.steemitimages.com/50x50/https://cdn.steemitimages.com/DQmdHfkhCPGYcfUqZqT4Br3nsmCpeVPj1BcLoepVX2PYeAE/engagetoken.png/ </div><br><br> @plantstoplanks you have received `25 ENGAGE` from @abh12345!<br>View and trade the tokens on [Steem Engine](https://steem-engine.com?p=market&t=ENGAGE).</center><br><hr><center><sup>This tip bot is powered by witness <a href="https://untersatz.steem.design">untersatz</a>!</sup></center>
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@mrprofessor ·
Then we met. And I see Buttercup there *-*
👍  
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@riverflows ·
Have you seen the updated Buttercup 2.0?
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@abh12345 · (edited)
This initative by Dan has brought about some excellent posts, and this is another one of those :)

> Parcels delivered to doorsteps on the other side of the world to people we had not even met in real life. Steem wasn't a flat, one way social network - it was a living, breathing, ever morphing gorgeous beast.
# 
So true, and I've been lucky enough to be on the receiving end - what a strange and wonderful place to be.  Thank you for sharing your story :)
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@riverflows ·
Thanks so much. It's quite hard to explain it to people, and I'm not even sure this post entirely covers it! I do love it's pulsing ENERGY though.. Facey and Insta seem like such dull beasts after Steem!
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@buzweaveryoutube ·
I'm glad that tings are working out for you here on Steem. You had a great outline. Happy Tuesday River.
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@riverflows ·
Happy Tuesday to you as well although be in Australia it is now Wednesday for me haha. Much love for the entire week in that case xx
👍  
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@goldenoakfarm ·
This was a really interesting post about your 2 years while on steemit! I am at or near 2 years this month, not sure when I actually joined or made my first post....
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@bia.birch ·
The writer part of me adores the way you structured this piece. The flow of ideas anchored in each paragraph with the refrain, *how has steem impacted my life,*  moves the reader along your journey in a way that can only make us feel the way you feel. And the way you feel, is breathtakingly similar to what I have discovered too. Thank you for sharing. I am honored to be a seedling in your beautiful Steemwoods &#127793;
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@porters · (edited)
Oh beautiful @riverflows, your enthusiasm is bubbling over here and is very uplifting! 
I love your analogy of the forest and oh! the growth we have seen!
I'm so grateful for the communities on Steem and our connection there and very happy that you took the initiative to start the Natural Medicine community, wonderful to watch it blossom!
Here's to Steeming on!
I was thinking of doing a 3speak video too but I have to figure out how to do it. Any suggestions for first timers to go to learn more about it?

Hey @riverflows I just curated this post for the #Powerhousecreatives contest featuring you and @eco-alex - such a well written post!
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@naturalmedicine ·
> Buying bread from a man in Brussels
He was six-foot-four and full of muscles
I said, "Do you speak-a my language?"
He just smiled and gave me a Vegemite sandwich
And he said...

Never knew vegemite was such a big thing in Australia, even though I knew it from this song. To be honest, I didn't really know what it was haha :>)

An amazing write up from an amazing person, on a crazy journey. Love to read how Steemit has made you level up ( also in real life ). I feel something similar has being going on in my life ( and that of many Steemians ). This space is so powerful in the best possible way.

I love your overall energy and what you've been doing for all of us. Natural Medicine rocks my socks off!

Keep being you! Big hug,

@vincentnijman

P.S. It was about time to curate you, our 'mother nature' ;>)

<center>![curation.png](https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/naturalmedicine/PszBW0Cg-curation.png)
<sup> If you like what we do, consider [delegation](https://steemyy.com/sp-delegate-form/) or following our curation trail on [Steemauto](https://steemauto.com/#). All are welcome to join us on [Discord](https://discord.gg/Cek4bav).</sup>
![weelotus.png](https://files.steempeak.com/file/steempeak/naturalmedicine/2b23Jc4S-weelotus.png)
</center>
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@foxkoit ·
$1.05
It eas very cool to read, and steem havev help me also last 4 years  👌🤗 
👍  , , , ,
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