Things have changed

Sorry if you found my comment negative, I simply agreed with the original post to, as you say, ‘encourage the best communication’.

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Hi @ElsieDownie @Amparo @Itchyfeet & @Colin … interesting perspectives on the forum, our house sitting lifestyle and how things have changed for some.

The forum is evolving and now that Membership Services are returning to “Normal Service” members will be able to find the help they need with any issues and not bring them to the forum, we are signposting those back through Therese and actively moving them away to where those members will get the assistance they need.

Those experienced members, many who have been with us for years, will have the best of experiences to share including great stories which bring into play so many different aspects of this amazing lifestyle, travel tips, pet care tips, application tips, communication tips … all the positives around being part of this unique and authentic community. Sharing those is how we create positivity, how we help one another, how we build community .

This is your forum and each member can help create the tone they want, positive or negative, it is a choice and one we hope you will continue to make in a positive way.

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Hi Angela
As you may (or not) know I stepped away from the forum for almost a month. It was doing my neb in (good old Scottish phrase). Yes, I loved the interaction and communication but it was all the moans and groans, endless discussion on stuff that could be resolved with a good discussion between the pet companion and sitter. Certain people will never review anything, we have to live with it. Others can’t do negative reviews. It just got me down.
Like others have said I missed the forum. There is definitely more positivity here now. There is a brilliant band of travellers here now and I’m loving it. Please don’t take my post too serious.

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Don’t you dare go away :slightly_frowning_face:

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I’m going no where. Someone has to keep an eye on you all……make sure everyone is behaving and hearing about all the travels, animals and tips is fantastic. Loving it.

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Behave? :upside_down_face:
Good let’s rattle some cages!

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Vanessa, I echo your comment about this forum raising awareness, at least for me. I also can relate to some negative aspects of the interactions, but I selectively absorb (or not) what I read here. I must admit that I skim through many of the posts, and at other times read some in depth.

Even though I have been with THS for seven years, I have picked up tips from the forum that have been useful. I have modified my profile at times to incorporate some ideas I’ve read here. I’ve learned about baking dog cookies as a present and they were well received (and the recipe was requested by the host).

Most recently, for a sit I was selected for this week with first-time homeowners, I was able to better guide them on what came next - for example, how to respond to those who were not selected, and the value of a Welcome Guide. I could not have done this as well if I had not been a member of the forum, given I am not able to view the website from the owner’s perspective.

Thank you, Vanessa and @Angela-CommunityManager , for continuing to listen to the forum feedback and for doing your best. I appreciate you both. :clap: :clap: :clap:

And @Colin , I look forward to your first ‘feel Good Friday’ post. :grinning:

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I truly laughed out loud all the way through that!

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Well we are glad you are back @ElsieDownie … when something is negative we have two choices join in and feed it or help change the narrative.

When we choose the latter we have a good chance to influence the whole, with the caveat that in spite of our best efforts it doesn’t always work but we believe our forum is working and working well.

We are a young community learning more about what works and what doesn’t every day.

Thank you for being part of it … and that goes for everyone here.

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I love this line. Very good point. Thanks Angela.

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Absolutely agree. What we nourish grows!
Feed what is desired in the garden 🪴

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Negativity is not always bad. It’s pointless censoring comments or posts just because they are not ‘good news- happy clappy’ - but it is about balance, making sure that new members are not led to believe that all the negative comments and/or experiences mentioned on the forum are the norm.

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We agree @Colin, censorship is not constructive.

It’s all in the delivery, the way the comments and posts are positioned and the discussion develops, the results and outcome can be a “positive negative”

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I just wanted to share a general tip for anyone exploring a new place (or even a familiar place). If you haven’t heard of it, there’s a fantastic website called Atlas Obscura. You just search the city that you’re in, and you will find “cool, hidden and unusual things to do”. I love doing things that aren’t the normal tourist things, and I’ve found things that even locals hadn’t heard about.

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Thank you @Rebecca_R
That’s very kind of you. What a cool share.

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I’m happy to share!

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That’s a lovely website, thank you :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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I learnt a lot from “professional sitters”, the ones who have a lot of experiences, having done 30, 50 or more sits. A lot from beginners too

I made a list of advices and now when I apply, i send a lit of questions, not afraid at all to bother an owner (if I bother him then it was not the good one)
It has helped me a lot too as I’m an owner and need sitters (less often as my husband is the usual sitter) I’m not the only human being to be anxious.

Bad experiences (others’ or mine) help a lot, so i never took some testimonies as negative. I don’t rely on THS to solve problems with owners or sitters, I’m an adult.

I have left the forum 2 months, because I have been censored, but as I sit more often, i still need advices, i’m fond of other members"’ s stories. This is why I’m delighted to spend a half day , a dinner or a lunch with owners (and sitters of course)

What surprised me the most, was since the forum opened last year i asked all owners I met if they go and watch it. NONE !! Strange. My own sitters did not either.