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.
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.
#anandaleeke it’s about the quality of the social media conversation
What’s happening in your part of the world?
It’s chilly and rainy in DC today. The photos (above and below) I took on Easter Sunday while taking a walk in my Dupont Circle neighborhood warmed me up. They also reminded me how much fun I’ve been having as I embrace my visual voice with photography on a weekly basis. Click here to see more photos expressing my visual voice.
My digital diet is coming along. Last week I did a better job of turning off my laptop and HTC EVO smartphone in the evening. I know my morning running and yoga practice are helping me stay centered.
This week I decided to use Monday and Wednesday as my primary social media days on Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, Tumblr, and WordPress. Wish me luck!
Next week I plan to write a blog about my artist-in-residence work (photos included at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. My blog post will include a poem I wrote and recited at the Veteran-Civilian Dialogue Project held at Smith Center for Healing and the Arts in March.
Enjoy your day and week!
My digital diet for the week of April 9 helped me be more mindful about my time. I was able to write, rest, practice yoga/Reiki/meditation, go to the gym, take care of home and personal finance responsibilities, attend an art exhibition opening at the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery, participate in the monthly artists-in-residence meeting held at the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, create collages with patients and staff at the Walter Reed National Medical Military Center, and read chapters from Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection during my morning commute with greater ease. I noticed my creative juices were flowing much better. The best part of the week was not carrying my smartphone with me most days.
My biggest challenge was going online in the evenings to check my email and other social media accounts. On some days, I spent more time than I originally budgeted. So I am working this week on sticking to my plan.
My greatest lesson learned was that when I write my Digital Sisterhood book chapter drafts on paper instead of my lap top I am less likely to go online in the evening.
Last month I started making a weekly collage to nurture my creativity journey. These collages help me stay on track with my commitment to expressing my visual voice. Many of them serve as visual affirmations that I use to support my fierce living commitment to self-care, fitness, unplugging, and completing my Digital Sisterhood book. I included two collages above from my April collection. What do you think?
How are you nurturing your creativity?
Are you making collages or artwork? If yes, share links in the comment section.
Writing a book is a magical and messy process for me. My blog gives me the space to share how the process impacts me. Last week I came to some conclusions about my time online. I realized I need to set deeper digital boundaries.
Today I came up with a schedule I think I can live with for the next several months. Here’s my digital diet for the week of April 9.
- Check my smart phone for email, texts, tweets, and Facebook posts in the evening.
- Leave my smart phone at home during the work week unless I am meeting someone in person and/or travelling.
- Post one blog per week on WordPress and Tumblr.
- Use Pinterest two days a week (no more than 1 hour).
- Tweet on Twitter on Digital Sisterhood Wednesdays (end tweeting by 9:00 pm).
- Post on Facebook and Google+ two days a week (that includes Digital Sisterhood Wednesdays).
- Use Flickr, YouTube, and Vimeo when I have photos and videos to upload.
What do you think about my digital diet?
Have you ever unplugged from your tech life, gone on a digital diet, or taken a digital sabbatical?
What did you learn from your experiences?
Happy Friday! Happy Good Friday! Happy Early Easter!
How is your day going? I hope it is treating you well. Mine started with a confession and a double dose of positive inspiration for my writer’s soul.
Here’s my confession: when I write books, especially memoirs, I have an opportunity to really explore some deep parts of myself. Sometimes the writing journey can get emotionally draining, scary, and overwhelming. When that happens, I look for positive inspiration. Today I reminded myself to slow down, breathe, and look for some positive inspiration. Guess what? I found two great sources.
Artist Kelly Rae Roberts’ April 5th blog post was the first source of inspiration. Roberts’ post about the benefits and pitfalls of an online life reminded me I need to continue taking great care of myself by setting more boundaries on my online life. In short, it’s time for me to revisit my online boundaries, establish a new schedule for going online, and have a more consistent practice of daily and weekly UNPLUGGING (my digital sister and friend Danica Kombol calls it a digital diet).
My second source of positive inspiration came from a YouTube video featuring storyteller/researcher Brene Brown’s TEDx Houston Talk on the power of vulnerability. Click here to watch the video. What a game changer! It’s making me dig deeper into my Digital Sisterhood book writing journey. I’m so grateful for Brown’s talk, the power of connection, and the belief and acceptance that I am enough as a spiritual being having a human experience as a woman, friend, daughter, sister, author, artist, coach, yoga teacher, innerpreneur, speaker etc. etc.
So what positive inspiration have you discovered lately?
How do you keep yourself inspired?
Any plans to unplug, set boundaries on your digital life, go on a digital diet (check out Daniel Sielberg’s The Digital Diet — great tips), or take a digital sabbatical (similar to the one Gwen Bell talks about in her book Digital Warriorship – fantastic book I read in 2011 — had a chance to participate in Bell’s BlogHer 2011 workshop — awesome experience)?