Names have been changed to protect the innocent...and my husband...and me...but not the dog. His name is Dexter.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

EVO Conference 2012

The conference that celebrates the evolution of women in social media.  This was the third year of the conference and the third year of my attendance.  I have actually been lucky enough to go every year.  And I love it.  

The people I have met there have been amazing.  These women are smart and funny and genuinely supportive of each others success.  They share their wisdom in classes and in hallways.  You just have to ask and someone will answer.  There isn't that secretive competitiveness so often associated with bloggers.  Most people are just happy to be there.  Happy to see old friends and make new friends. 

One of the classes I got to attend on the first day of the conference was on entrepreneurship and it was fascinating.  First of all, they recommended reading The E-Myth and Delivering Happiness, neither of which I have read but I thought I would pass it along anyway. 

There was one thing that stood out as the most significant in all of the information shared.  It's simple and obvious and yet probably the one thing that prevents a lot of people from succeeding.  And it was this....

Get Out Of Your Own Way

Yep.  Get out of your own way.  How often are we close to attaining our goal when something mysteriously gets in our way....proving our inner critic right, that we couldn't really do it anyway.  And how often is that mysterious something ourselves?  Our thoughts are powerful.  A lot more powerful than we realize.  And positive "I can do this" thoughts are a lot harder to focus on than "I'm doomed to fail" thoughts.  I do believe this makes us the greatest determining factor in our own success.  Something to think about, eh?

With this being my third year of attendance I thought I knew what to expect.  But I was wrong.

This year was....different.  I couldn't quite understand it at first.  There was the usual mix of first-time attendees and veterans.  I knew quite a few people, but there were more people that I didn't know.  There were classes and workshops and the typical exchange of cards and causes.  But it was still different.

It was on the second day that I began to realize what it might be.  I didn't seem to have as much of my social anxiety that usually accompanies me whenever I leave the house.  Generally speaking, you can plop me down amongst a group of my peers and it's sure to bring some sort of embarrassing moment.  The putting of the foot in the mouth or a variety of other things.  So it's not really all that surprising that I get nervous in these kind of social situations.  And with over 300 people in attendance, the chances for embarrassment skyrocket.

But this year....this year it was a little less scary.  Less scary to walk into a room full of strangers.  Less scary to start up a conversation with a new person.  Less scary to talk to the sponsors.  Less scary to tell them about myself.  And a lot less scary to walk up to that one person who looks as scared to be there as I have felt in the past and start the conversation that can make it less scary for all of us.

I guess you could say that I have evolved.  


AdriansCrazyLife said...

Hmmm. Now that you mention it, I felt that way too. More confident, more go with the flow, more willing to put myself out there a bit and let people know how much I care about them and how much I enjoyed spending time with them. It's a nice change to get out of your head and just enjoy the moment.

Jani said...

I'm the newbie here, so I could so relate to all the feelings you've experienced before going. Actually, no one knows this, but I was very close to cancelling. I then decided I wasn't going to go with any other expectation other than to meet new bloggers and enjoy myself. I did both. Like you, however, I hope to be better prepared next year!Did we meet?

Emily said...

I love your evolution. And I love that you're one of my EVO conference buddies. Makes me happy to see you there!

Kristina P. said...

Look at you, having your very own EVOlution.

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