In a few weeks, I am heading to Blogher for the first time. I have to say: I am pretty nervous. The conference’s overwhelming reputation precedes it. Thousands of women bloggers from newbies to the best of the best (you know who they are) in one place. If you ask me, thousands of women anywhere sounds like a recipe for disaster.
Many words of advice have been handed out to me like wear comfy shoes (which I find almost impossible to do). One recommendation came to me from a woman I admire, and it went something like this: Find your group of women you like and you will be fine. Isn’t that so simple and true? …and so applicable to the majority of life as a woman?
When I think about how many times in my life, I have felt downright bad about myself because of the company I kept…WOW! I know these words of advice to be true when I reflect back in time. We all know that women can be catty and cunning, but what we sometimes forget is that they can also be kind and kinda wonderful. It is difficult not to be cautious or concerned when it comes to groups of women, but it may be as simple as just surrounding ourselves with the right ones.
I am nodding my head in agreement right now as I know you are thinking that we must kiss a lot of frogs to find the one. Finding the right group is often easier said than done. When you find the right one, how will you know? Very simply, you will not question who you are? if you are funny? if you look silly? You will be you and feel pretty damn good about it, too.
This is not exclusive to Blogher ’12, but scattered across life in general. I cannot even count as high as the times when other women have said to me: Why are women not as supportive as I think they should be of other women in business? Or, what about the times I have witnessed a group of women just being downright mean or leaving a woman out.
I always say – better to be alone than be saddled with someone who brings you down, and I mean it. A cup of coffee or glass of wine solo is priceless compared to a beverage shared with someone who doesn’t make YOU feel good. Period.
Just this past weekend, I had dinner with some old friends and we got to talking about a local yoga studio that has several locations (one by me, one by them). By chance, my old friend asked me ‘Do you know this Lisa that everyone loves?’ To which I could not reply fast enough because Henry piped in with ‘Does she know that Lisa? They are all crazy for her!’
This simple little exchange led to a convo around what was it with Lisa. Why were women all over the city making a big deal about her? I explained that in addition to teaching a great yoga class that never disappoints, Lisa always smiles and says something nice to everyone. Women of all different shapes, sizes, lengths, and figures fill the room for Lisa’s class, and everyone leaves feeling good about themselves. That is worth all the fuss.
My friend and colleague, Nellie, over at CorpNet is like the Lisa of the women in the business world. Another woman always smiling and shining with words of praise for everyone around her. This is what makes me want to do business with Nellie. I feel good about the transaction, the business relationship, and therefore confident in myself as a business woman. No question is ever dumb or repetitive with Nellie, and she helps women launch new businesses through forming LLC’s…what could be more confusing?
Nellie makes each and every one of us feel like a star when incorporating – that is magical. I am not sugar-coating or glossing over here. I am speaking the truth.
In business, life, conferencing and beyond – I guess we all have to find our Lisa and Nellie.
As for Blogher ’12 – Although both of our husbands keep asking if we are sure we want a roommate, I am thrilled to be sharing a room at Blogher ’12 with my wingman, Jenny. More to come on that…