Thursday, August 8, 2013

BlogHer13 Insight

Last year, when I returned from BlogHer, I lamented that I will not be going next year.  I felt burned out from the pace and energy of the conference.  I also didn’t know how it would work with moving.  Pretty early on, I made peace with the fact that I would not be attending the conference.

But then a strange turn of events occurred, and I ended up going with my friend, Emily, who knew of an early bird ticket for sale.  I was living at my parents’ house without a solid date for moving in to our new house. I didn’t know how it was all going to work out, but I took a leap of faith and just said yes.

At the Voices of the Year with Emily

I am so incredibly glad that I did. 

Before I left, I wrote about what I hoped to achieve at BlogHer.  I didn’t think of it as writing a wish list to the universe, but unbeknownst to me, the universe was listening.

I learned a lot of useful information about marketing and blogging.  But beyond that, I had a chance to really talk and connect with others.  Not just idle chit chat expected at a conference.  I had the kind of discussions that left me energized and focused and inspired.  Lately, I had been feeling dull; all of my energy has been funneling towards teaching and that, in and of itself, has made me feel insecure and unsure how to proceed as a mother and a blogger. I found clarity and a little more confidence in my choices . . .. thanks to the women that just happened to be sitting at my table. 

Loved these ladies from the Lean In Circle

Which is way more than I bargained for when I flippantly agreed to go to a conference I swore I wasn’t going to attend.

Oh, and this happened, too:

I met Sheryl Sandberg!

Can you believe that?!  I met Sheryl Sandberg.  You know, Sheryl who wrote Lean In.  I didn’t get a chance to tell how her book made me all teary-eyed as I am tiptoeing my way back into the work world.  I didn’t get a chance to tell her how her how relieved I was to read that boundaries do not hold you back in a career, they give you more focus on your personal definition of success.

However, when she came over to introduce herself, and I said, “Nice to meet you.  My name is Erin,” that somehow all that was conveyed in those two sentences.

I also had a chance to catch up with a great friend.  It is totally unfair that there is a whole continent getting in the way of us meeting for drinks and chatting like that all the time.  (Note: Annie, you were greatly missed).

Me with Elizabeth from Flourish in Progress

If I had to choose one word to describe my experience at BlogHer, it would be serendipitous.  And for that, I am grateful that I just listened to my instincts to just go.

Have you ever said yes to something without overthinking it and it turned out to be exactly what you needed?


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