Congratulations! After months - or perhaps years (!) - of stalking the #WeAllGrow hashtag, you took a deep breath, closed your eyes went ahead and bought yourself a ticket. And you did it before they sold out. Congratulations! Now you get to panic.
(No, no, please don’t panic.)
You have nothing to worry about, PROMISE.
I know that seems easy for me to say - after all, I’m talking to you from the inside (I guess that can sound obnoxious, but I’m part of the team that has been working to make your Summit as amazing as possible, so I guess that makes me an ‘insider’). #WeAllGrow Summit is an opportunity for growth, for sisterhood, and just plain fun. You have nothing to worry about.
But, I know what it’s like to be nervous the first time you do anything. So let me share with you ten Insider’s Tips to help you put your mind at ease.
Meet New People
Hi, yes, I realize this is obvious because it’s all of these new people that are causing los nervios, but hear me out. Even if you literally don’t know a soul, you will automatically find people that are like you - and that’s a very good thing. Like attracts like. But there’s a lot of power in meeting people that are very different from you - that is how you truly expand your network, and those are the people who make life interesting. It’s usually very hard to find people that are different from you - unless, perhaps, they are coming from all over the country to Long Beach so that they can meet new people?
Add People On the Spot
When you meet someone even remotely cool, add them to your phone, follow them on social media, or exchange numbers right then and there. Just do it. Trust me on this.
Try New Things
Maybe you’re A Very Serious Writer and could care less about Instagram, but this is your chance to learn something new and you should take it. And if you only use your oven to store pots and pans, well, welcome to the club! Maybe we should check out that food blogging session together, don’t you think?
Wear Sensible Shoes
Ah, who am I kidding? This isn’t really the time to be sensible. I encourage you to take this opportunity to be as impractical and glorious as you probably don’t get to be in your everyday life. Wear the heels, or the bedazzled Vans, or wear Frida-esque flowers in your hair if that’s what you’ve always wanted. Or maybe you have to dress up for work everyday and you just want to chill in jeans and statement tees. Whatever feels like the most fantastical version of you - go for it.
And then, it is my hope that when you go home, you give yourself permission to be you at your most authentic and bold where it matters most. But that takes guts, and guts take practice. Summit is a safe space for that.
(And the truth is, most people end up in chancletas at some point.)
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
Ride a helicopter? Walk up to a microphone to ask a question in front of over 400 women? Pitch your dream brand? Ask the amazing woman who was in line with you at registration if maybe she’d like to collaborate on a business together?
YES. YOU SHOULD DO THAT.
Find time to relax. Thankfully, #WeAllGrow Summit happens in a beautiful location and there’s room to spread out. Take a moment to connect with yourself and recharge your batteries. Or treat yourself to a margarita or a sweet bite at one of the sponsor suites.
Write it Down
Take notes, on paper, if possible. Write down words that inspire you (and the name of the person that said it, so that you can thank them later). Write down that insane business idea without worrying about how you’re going to make it happen. You will figure out later, but only if you remember it. So write it down. (And put your name on your notebook in case you misplace it.)
Take Pictures. Now Take Some More. Post your favorites.
You will never regret taking too many pictures. And be sure to post a ton of them during Summit - not everyone is going to take my advice and add you on the spot, but pretty much everyone searches the hashtags in the evenings (so don’t forget those!) and seeing your photo from earlier that day is a great reminder of the fun times - they are also an amazing conversation starter when you find yourself at the same table with a new friend the following day.
Have a Plan
As fun as Summit is, it is an investment of time and money and you do want to make sure you get the most out of it. What ‘getting the most out of it’ means is going to be different for everyone, so you need to make a plan for what what is important to you. Make sure you know ahead of time what sessions you don’t want to miss, which sponsors you want to meet, who you want to introduce yourself to. Throw in a bit of flexibility to balance things out, and you’re golden.
Don’t hide your light. We want to meet you - that’s why we’re here. Yes, meet other people and learn from them, but also share your amazingness with the #WeAllGrow community. It’s OK to share the amazing things you’ve done - or are planning to do. We want to know.