Ananda’s Memorial Day Weekend

Untitled, originally uploaded by anandaleeke.

How was your Memorial Day Weekend? What did you do?

Memorial Day Weekend gave me an opportunity to relax, rest, and hang out in my U Street/Dupont Circle/Adams Morgan neighborhoods in Washington, DC.

A writer letting loose on 14th Street, NW in DC

I led a social media 101 workshop for my Mastermind group on Saturday morning.

Photo Credit: Madelyn Leeke

On Sunday, I took several walks in my neighborhood and captured some of my favorite flowers with my smartphone.

Sharon Malachi and Ananda

I also met up with my stylist Sharon Malachi (a/k/a Butterfly LP) and obtained summer styling tips at Blackbird, a cool spot for drinks and lite fare on 14th Street, NW.

L’Enfant Cafe
Sharon with her Butterfly iPhone case
Ananda and Sharon Malachi at L’Enfant

I gave Sharon a business and social media coaching while eating a tasty brunch at L’Enfant on Monday.

Photo from Instagram

To stay updated on social media, I joined Instagram and created photos with my smartphone. Instagram has become one of my favorite apps.  I also wrote, decluttered, and organized my home (year long process).

Time for a Digital Diet After Everywhere’s Digitini Event & Digital Sisterhood Network Activities

Happy Thursday!

This morning I had a wake up call while I was biking my four miles in the gym. I realized that the past two weeks have been filled with lots of social media moments.  Some of my favorite moments happened during the Digitini Cocktails and Cupcakes event hosted by Everywhere (my favorite social media marketing firm!) on May 18 in Atlanta (huge moment was receiving the Atlanta #Digitalsisterhood Key to the City that Danica Kombol made!).  See the photos below.
Photo Credit: Terrance Gains and Everywhere Team (they created the invitation)
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Everywhere team with Ananda
Photo Credit: Everywhere’s photo of OMG Cup and Cakes & Ciroc’s Digitini Cocktail
Digitini Thank You Note
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Atlanta Digital Community – Photo Credit – Everywhere
To read more about my social media adventures at Spelman College’s Women of Color Leadership Conference and Everywhere’s Digitini event, click here:
2) Everywhere’s Digitini Event, May 18.  My Digitini adventures and Digital Sisterhood Network activities have been juicy sweet! Now it’s time to return to my digital diet where I take time off from the social media world.  Guess what? My summer and fall months are gonna be filled with lots of digital diet moments as I wrap up the final parts of my Digital Sisterhood book. I will be online on Digital Sisterhood Wednesdays and during BlogHer in early August and Blogalicious in late September.  Are you going on a digital diet or changing your online routine this month or summer? If yes, share how.  See you next week with my end of the month blogs! Enjoy your day and long weekend!

Ananda speaks at Spelman College’s Leadership & Women of Color Conference

Social Media Panel featuring Roland Martin, Patricia Cesaire, James Andrews, and Ananda Leeke — Photo Credit: Lauren Brown Jarvis

Greetings All!

Last week was filled with Georgia peach sweet adventures during my trip to Spelman College’s Leadership and Women of Color Conference, a professional development opportunity for women aspiring to be leaders as well as those who are in leadership positions. The conference theme was “Leading with Purpose.” It was organized under the leadership of Dr. Jane E. Smith,  Executive Director, Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement at Spelman.  Click here to learn more about the conference.

My favorite moments from the conference included:

  • Hearing Dr. Beverly Tatum speak about composite mentoring during the conference opening.
  • Interviewing Tiffani Gatlin, founder of Tastemaker Magazine on day one of the conference. Click here to listen to the interview.
  • Attending the Book Fair and speaking with my digital sister Deborah Owens, “The Wealth Coach,” about her book, A Purse of Your Own (and having her sign my copy of the book!)
  • Hearing Dr. Tatum talk about H.O.P.E. = Having Optimism Produces Effort. Timeless wisdom!
  • Chatting with Dr. Nicole LaBeach and purchasing her book, A Woman’s True Purpose at the Book Fair (getting the Choose Yourself t-shirt too!).
  • Meeting people like Nicole Roberts  Jones, CEO of iDEFINE, during the Legacy of Leadership Awards Dinner.
  • Listening to the empowering words of the Legacy of Leadership awardees Shinae Chun,  Former Director, Women’s Bureau, U.S. Department of Labor; Evelyn Lowery,  Founder, SCLC W.O.M.E.N.; Monica Pearson,  News Anchor, WSB-TV, Channel 2; and Vivian Stringer, Women’s Basketball Coach,  Rutgers University.
  • Chatting one-on-one with Vivian Stringer about social media after the Legacy of Leadership Awards Dinner.
  • Having breakfast with my new digital sister Lynn Shareef, a proud Spelman alumna.
  • Learning from Dr. Kym Harris,  President & CEO, Your SweetSpot Coaching & Consulting, during the Coaching Breakfast.
  • Being inspired by the Testimonies from the Field session featuring Kathleen McGhee-Anderson (Spelman Alumna),  Writer/Producer, TV/Film/Theater; Alisha  Thomas Morgan, Georgia State Representative (Spelman Alumna); Tisha Tallman, President  & CEO of the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of  Commerce; and Jue Wong, CEO, Astral Health &  Beauty, Inc.
  • Attending a leadership development workshop facilitated by Tai Beauchamp,  CEO/On-Air Host, BluePrint Group, LLC.
  • Meeting Dr. Tatum, Dr. Jane E. Smith, and Patricia Cesaire, Director of Social Media at Black Enterprise.
  • Seeing the Faith Ringgold exhibit at the Spelman Museum of Fine Art during one of the breaks. AWESOME! Ms. Ringgold is one of my favorite artists. Love her memoir too!
  • Hanging out with some of my favorite social media peeps: Lauren Brown Jarvis (Spelman student), Lauren Thomas, and James and Sherrelle Andrews.
  • Sharing my experiences and lessons learned as a blogger and the Digital Sisterhood Network founder during the Social Media Panel.
  • Spending time with the awesome Spelman Media team: Tomika DePriest, Terrilyn Simmons, Joyce Davis, and Kia Smith
  • Meeting my new NYC sistalove Theresa at the end of the conference and chatting about our favorite moments.
Social Media Panel – James Andrews, Ananda Leeke, Patricia Cesaire, and Roland Martin

On day two of the conference, I served as a panelist for the Social Media Panel – Purposeful Posts: How Social Media Can Shape Your Leadership Brand.  Click here to learn more about the panel discussion.  Journalist Roland Martin moderated the panel.  Patricia Cesaire, Director of Social Media at  Black Enterprise, and James Andrews, Founder of SocialPeople.TV, served as panelists.  During the panel discussion, I shared my experiences as  a blogger and the Digital Sisterhood Network founder, insights on taking care of yourself online with a digital diet, tips on how to use social media tools, and the power of women online.

Check out several tweets about my comments below.

Lynn Shareef
Lynn Shareef@lynnshareef

#anandaleeke it’s about the quality of the social media conversation

SC Women of Color
SC Women of Color @SpelmanWOCConf

.@anandaleeke advises us to take good care of ourselves. You can overdose on social media. Go on a social diet. #SpelmanWOCC #fb

Beverly Daniel Tatum
Beverly Daniel Tatum@BDTSpelman

@TastemakerMag RT! @anandaleeke says sometimes you have to be on digital diet #SpelmanWOCC

Joyce E. Davis
Joyce E. Davis@enjoyceinglife

@anandaleeke scheds tweets & says shes #radioshack girl likes real cameras > #instagram, sold 4 $1B-@jamesandrews #SpelmanWOCC #SocialMedia

Spelman College
Spelman College@SpelmanCollege

@awarriorssoul: @anandaleeke determines her tools based on where she is, how much time available, quality of convo #SpelmanWOCC #socialmedia

Spelman College
Spelman College@SpelmanCollege

RT @JSmithSpelman: @anandaleeke says she has suffered from #tech schizophrenia but also goes on digital diets  #socialmedia #SpelmanWOCC


@anandaleeke says writing her first book led her to blog. #SpelmanWOCC

Dr. Jane Smith
Dr. Jane Smith@JSmithSpelman

#digitalsisterhood is the brand @anandaleeke has developed via her #digitalsisterhood network. #SpelmanWOCC

Lynn Shareef
Lynn Shareef@lynnshareef

#spelmanwocc woman are a powerful presence in the digital world #anandaleeke digital sisterhood! 69million strong

Jacquie Hood Martin
Jacquie Hood Martin@Jhoodmartin

#AnandaLeeke says take time away from social media as not to become ‘a social media schizophrenic’ it’s ok to back away #SpelmanWOCC

Jacquie Hood Martin
Jacquie Hood Martin@Jhoodmartin

Women view the Internet like its ‘social tv’ we use it as a mean of community and connectivity says #AnandaLeeke #SpelmanWOCC

Here are more photos from the conference. Enjoy!

Ananda, Joyce Davis, and James Andrews
Roland Martin and Tomika DePriest
Tastemaker Magazine founder Tiffini Gatlin and Ananda
Tai Beauchamp’s Leadership Development Workshop
Ananda and Deborah Owens

It’s Monday — Basking in my 5K Race glow!

May 7 007, originally uploaded by anandaleeke.

Happy Monday!

I hope you had a great weekend! How did you spend it? What were the highlights?

My weekend highlights included attending my Mastermind meditation group meeting, working at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center as an artist-in-residence with a retired Army airman who told me some great stories as we created two collages with poems and six word memoirs, hanging out/dancing/sipping on cocktails with my cousin Sharon and her friends at a really cool lounge called Cities, running the Race for Hope DC 5K, spending time with my creative accountability sister Jess at Cafe Collage, writing, going to church, napping, taking some nice long walks, and seeing the Restless City movie at the West End (wonderful movie).

The one thing that really stayed with me was meeting people impacted by brain tumor cancer during the Race for Hope DC 5K race. The conversations I had were deep and at times caused my eyes to water up. When I crossed the finished line, I bowed my head in deep gratitude and dedicated my run to everyone living with brain tumor cancer. Click here to listen to my audio blog that includes some of my Race Day reflections.

So what’s your week looking like?

Mine is all about getting my rest, writing, decluttering, fitness training at the gym, running 3 miles 3x this week in preparation for June 5K, yoga/Reiki/meditation, and finishing my homework from my financial advisor.

See you next week!



My new calling — Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project

In her 2011 Digital Women: from geeks to mainstream presentation that was given at the WIFT International Women Conference for Digital Women, Dr. Taly Weiss, a social psychologist and CEO/Founder of Trendspotting, concluded that “women are dominant digital users – they breathe and live digital.” Dr. Weiss’ conclusion echoes BlogHer’s 2011 Social Media Matters Study findings:

  • Eight-seven million women (18 to 76 years old) are now online.
  • Sixty-nine million women use social media weekly.
  • Eighty million women use social media monthly.
  • Fifty-five million women read blogs monthly.

These facts illustrate the power and presence women have in the digital space. When women marry their power and presence, they give birth to digital sisterhood, the feminine currency they use to create relationship wealth through the connections they make, conversations they have, communities they build, causes they support, collaborative partnerships they establish, and commerce they engage in with women they meet online and offline.

They also become Digital Sisterhood Leaders, ambassadors of social expression who share what they are passionate about online. In her upcoming book, Digital Sisterhood: Fierce Living Online for 25 Years (Fall 2012), Ananda Leeke, founder of the Digital Sisterhood Network, writes,

“Without even knowing it, women have become Digital Sisterhood Leaders as they use their social media platforms to advocate causes; to build communities; to create apps, art, books, businesses, products, publications, services, tools, and webisodes; to curate content; to educate and inform; to give voice to their thoughts as subject matter experts, thought leaders, and brand ambassadors; to share information and experiences; to explore and experiment with new technologies as early adopters and trendsetters; to engage in social good; to influence others with their lifestyles and personal interests; to inspire and motivate; to mentor; to network; to tell their personal stories; and to promote and celebrate the expertise, gifts, and talents of others. Based on my online and offline interactions, I have identified 12 key leadership roles they play: advocate, community builder, creator, curator, educator, influencer, mentor, motivator, promoter, social do gooder, storyteller, and thought leader.”

The Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project was established to explore, document, and celebrate the creative ways social media women express their leadership abilities and experiences online and offline. The Project will have a soft launch in May. Its official launch will occur in January 2013. The soft launch for the Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project began with a Digital Sisterhood Radio interview with Dana Theus, founder of InPower Women on May 1. The interview focused on the leadership roles social media women play and tips on how to establish a personal leadership brand with social media. Click here to listen the audio recording of the interview.

The launch also includes a series of #DSLead Twitter chats on May 2, 9, 23, and 30 from 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm ET. See the list of Twitter chat topics below. Make sure you follow @digitalsisterhd and use the hashtag #dslead to track the conversations on Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Tweetchat or Tweetgrid.

  • May 2 @9:00-10:00 pm ET: The Leadership Roles that Social Media Women Play
  • May 9 @9:00-10:00 pm ET: How Social Media Women Develop Their Personal Leadership Brands
  • May 23 @9:00-10:00 pm ET: Social Media Women as Community Builder Leaders
  • May 30 @9:00-10:00 pm ET: Social Media Women as Social Good Leaders

In addition, the Project will feature a series of guest blogger interviews with Digital Sisterhood Leaders in May, June, July, August, September, October, and November. There will be more surprises especially during Digital Sisterhood Month in December. So stay tuned for more news in the coming months!

Happy May and Saying Goodbye to April

Photo Credit: Dupont Circle home on Easter Sunday by Ananda Leeke

Happy May! Happy Tuesday! Bye Bye April!

It’s a brand new month. What are you looking forward to?

I am looking forward to warmer weather, pedicures with royal blue painted toes, taking photos when I walk in my neighborhood, hanging out with friends, going to the movies at the Landmark Theatre, practicing yoga outside, going to the gym to do my core and strength training exercises, writing my Digital Sisterhood book, the soft launch of the Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project (today and all month), running the Race for Hope DC 5K to raise awareness about brain tumors on May 6, watching Kerry Washington in Scandal on, reading Marney K. Makridakis’ Creating Time book, taking my mother to dinner for Mother’s Day, traveling to Atlanta to speak at  Spelman College’s Women of Color Leadership Conference on May 16-17, seeing my digital brothers and digital sisters while I am in Atlanta, meeting with my MasterMind Group each week, conducting a social media 101 training for my MasterMind group members, working at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center as an artist-in-residence for Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, attending my People of Color Buddhist Meditation Sangha’s monthly meeting, checking out new art exhibits at several local galleries, spending time at the Sunday Drummers’ Circle in Malcolm X Park , decluttering my home, finishing my homework from my financial advisor (finalizing my will, living will, healthcare power of attorney, and legal power of attorney), and visiting with family during Memorial Day Weekend.

April was a BUSY month! What were some of your highlights?

Photo of Ananda after she completed the Stop the Silence 5K in DC on 4/29/12

My April highlights are below (links to audio blogs are included).

  • Enjoyed many mornings with sun salutations and evenings with kind and gentle yoga.  My home yoga practice got JUICY!
  • Danced to Esperanza Spaldings’ new CD a lot!  What great jazz!
  • Identified a few new writing spots in my neighborhood.
  • Found a fabulous pair of denim jeans that fit me WELL. Thank goodness for Ann Taylor Loft.  Our love affair continues!
  • Purchased a great pair of Ann Klein patent leather ballerina flats from Macy’s.  FINALLY!
  • Enjoyed a sweet Good Friday service at All Souls Church.
  • Worked with an amazing group of wounded warriors on creative projects at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
  • Spent time looking for Mother’s Day, graduation day, and birthday cards.
  • Mailed my taxes and received a nice refund that is going straight into my IRA.
  • Got some great spring lipsticks and jewelry from Target.
  • Treated myself to a scented lotion trip to Bath & Body. Love the orange ginger body lotion and shower gel.
  • Started eating oat bran with raisins as an afternoon snack.  It helps fight off the hunger pains and sweet tooth desires.
  • Went to the DC screening of Scandal, a new ABC TV show featuring Kerry Washington.  Loved it!
  • Received so much wisdom from Sara Olivieri’s workshop for the DC Fabulous Women Business Owners.
  • Discovered the Farmer’s Market crepe at DC Scoop on U Street.
  • Attended the Public Meeting for the Northeast Region of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. (my sorority) at the Omni Shoreham Hotel.  Initially, I came to the event to support my mother and soror, Theresa Leeke, the event chairwoman.  Little did I know that I would walk away inspired by motivational speaker Willie Jolley and the Duke Ellington Choir.  What a powerful night!
  • Reconnected with my former coach and mentor C’s Little of the UDL Group.  C’s mentored and coached me during the 90s.  He invited me to join his MasterMind Group which meets each week.  So far, the group is helping me stay on track with my fierce living commitments, fitness program, 5K trainings, Digital Sisterhood book writing, and home decluttering. I AM SO GRATEFUL!
  • Had a lot of fun running the 5K Race to Stop the Silence on April 29 at Freedom Plaza in DC.  The race raises awareness for child sexual abuse. It was a great way to jumpstart my Spring fitness program. Now I am on fire to run, train, and strengthen my body! Click here to listen to my audio blog after the 5K race.
  • Finished reading Dr. Brene Brown’s book, The Gifts of Imperfection. It helped me get back on track with my Digital Sisterhood book writing. Deep bow of GRATITUDE!  Click here to listen to my audio blog which features my takeaways.
  • Began reading Marney K. Makridakis’ Creating Time. The book is a game changer because it is helping me slow down and appreciate my own sense of time.  I so needed to read this book as I write my own book! Click here to listen to my first review of the book and a present moment poem.
  • Hung out with friends at local cafes. It was fun to shoot the breeze!
  • Took photos of Springtime with my digital camera.
  • Decided to launch the Digital Sisterhood Leadership Project.
  • Maintained my digital diet for most of the month.  It was eye opening. It helped me set some important boundaries with my online time.