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Blogalicious is one of my favorite communities and conferences because it celebrates diversity in the blogosphere. It embodies the spirit of Digital Sisterhood and Digital Brotherhood! I have been a fan since the first conference in 2009 (have attended all four conferences too).
This year, I am excited about celebrating the fifth anniversary of Blogalicious. Why? First, I adore the theme which is “Create. Build. Fund.” Second, Stacey “Justice Fergie” Ferguson, Blogalicious co-founder and chief curator, and her Blogalicious team (Jazzy Jones, Xina Eiland, Thien-Kim Lam, Jana Pauldin, Terence Gaines, and Joe Ferguson) know how to plan and host signature conferences and events that leave me with an abundance of information, inspiration, and Instagram moments filled with deep connection and friendship that remain etched on my heart for years.
This month, I am using my Internet Geek Tuesday blog posts to share my BlogHer 13 conference recaps. Just in case you didn’t know BlogHer is the Web’s largest community, conference, and leading guide to the hottest news and trends among women in social media. It is also one of my favorite online communities and conferences!
Today’s blog post features my reflections on the second annual BlogHer Fashion Show (one of my favorite conference events). The theme was “Half Woman. Half Amazing.” I think it should have been “Amazing Women Owning Their Beauty” because the women who walked the runway gave the audience the gift of seeing what happens when a group of sixteen sassy, soulful, and stunning stars shine their beauty from the inside out as they strut what the universe gave them in fabulous clothing and make up.
They reminded me of actress and humanitarian Audrey Hepburn’s beauty wisdom: “The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole, but true beauty in a Woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she knows.” Check out some of their photos below.
Disclaimer: All photos are from BlogHer.com.
Aren’t these women owing their beauty? To learn more about them, see the list below.
My greatest takeaway from the fashion show is that all women have the power and right to define and express what beautiful means to them. And that’s exactly what I did after the show when I asked my dear digital brother Tyrone Farley, founder of TrueFashionistaNow.com to style me. With one small touch of moving my hair to one side, I got a new summer look that truly reflected how I felt: simply beautiful and grateful for a wonderful BlogHer conference experience!
My yoga practice has helped me focus my creative energy and anchored me during my writing process for several books over the past 16 years. I have even wrote poetry about the connection between two of my favorite practices. See my poem below.
When I practice yoga, my ego disappears.
I merge into the Infinite.
We become one.
Messages pass through me.
They become stories, essays, poems, truisms, quotes, prayers, affirmations, letters, e-mail messages, blog posts, and journal entries.
I inhale and raise my hands above my head, pressing the palms of my hands together.
My gaze is focused on my thumbs.
My head is balanced on my shoulders.
My shoulders are rolled back.
My heart shines forth.
My spine is long and strong.
My belly is soft but tucked in.
My arms hang gracefully with splayed fingers.
My legs support my core as my feet ground themselves to Mother Earth.
In this space, I breathe in and out five times.
On my next inhalation, I come into a forward fold.
The blood rushes down from my head.
I get a buzz.
It feels like nirvana.
I take a deep breath and raise myself up one vertebrae at a time.
As I exhale, my arms find comfort by my side.
I stand in place for several moments, feeling the benefits of my short practice.
The next moment encourages me to inhale and bring my hands into prayer against my heart.
I close my practice chanting seven Oms.
Om in my spirit.
Om in my heart.
Om in my breath.
Om in my mind.
Om in my body.
Om in my thoughts.
Om in my writing.
I have also taken yoga and writing workshops taught by my yoga teachers, Yael Flusberg and Kimberly Wilson. Their workshops offered me a chance to explore how different yoga poses and breathing exercises can stretch and energize my body, open my heart to new ideas, quiet my mind and clear emotional space so I can hear my inner wisdom, and focus my energy to meet deadlines for writing projects. They also gave me an opportunity to complete writing exercises after doing yoga poses and to share my reflections with a supportive community of fellow yoga students and writers.
Do you use yoga to support your creative work? How has it helped?
Have you ever taken a yoga and writing workshop? What did you learn?
If you are looking for yoga and writing resources, check out the list below.
Last week, I attended the 9th Annual BlogHer Conference held at the McCormick Place and Sheraton Chicago in Chicago, Illinois. What a time I had! It was intense, inspiring, and informative. That’s why I decided to write several blog recaps.
I read Sandberg’s book earlier this year. It took me a full weekend to inhale her words and wisdom. Her book was filled with many golden nuggets I have used in my life and shared with other women. It also inspired me to write and submit a case study entitled “Lean In and Listen to Yourself” for the Hot Mommas Project. As a result, I was recently named a 2012-2013 author for the Hot Mommas Project case study library.
When I learned Sandberg would be a BlogHer keynote, I was thrilled! Here are the key takeaways I received from her interview with Stone.
Believe in yourself.
I am unapologetically a feminist (inspired by Mellody Hobson, President of Ariel Investments and one of my virtual mentors from the 1990s).
Reach for any ambition.
Ask yourself what would you do if you weren’t afraid, and then reach for those ambitions.
At the end of her interview, she challenged audience members to write what they would do if they weren’t afraid on paper signs her LeanIn.org provided, take photos with the signs, and tweet and post the photos on LeanIn.org Tumblr. I loved the challenge. Check out the statements I wrote below.
Writing these statements helped me get clearer on what I really want to do with my passion, gifts, energy, and time. My next step is to lean in and publish my Digital Sisterhood book (you know the one I have been writing since 2009 — what a journey!), create space in my life to write more books and create art, and plan when I will cut my locs and grow my Angela Davis afro (will probably happen during my 50th year on earth which is fast approaching in 2014 — maybe even 2015).
A few weeks ago, I read an article about CreativeMornings DC, a free monthly breakfast monthly lecture series for creative folks that includes a 20 minute talk and coffee, in the July 19th edition of the Washington Post Express. I got really excited because I am always looking for ways to connect with creative folks in my city.
CreativeMornings DC is hosted by Joel Daly. Since January 2013, Daly has organized a great lineup of speakers over the past months. In July, Dr. Amber Straughn, an Astrophysicist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, was the featured speaker. The event was held from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. at 1776. Click here to watch speaker talks from previous events.
In 2009, Eisenberg launched CreativeMornings because she wanted to create an accessible, inspiring morning event for people to meet. Since then, CreativeMornings has grown to 51 chapters located in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, India, Korea, New Zealand, Netherlands, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and the United States. Click here to read the latest news posted on the CreativeMornings blog.
Where do you go to have creative conversations in your local community?