I knew this would be an amazing opportunity to join the creative community and to interact with others who shared a lot of the same passions I do. It also didn’t hurt that Seattle just happens to be a place I have yet to explore. A total win, win scenario.
With two tracks during the day, each attendee gets access to a “highly curated, impactful one-day program of workshops, mentor sessions, and panels.” The day included delicious food and cocktails, the trendiest pop-up shops, adorable photo booths, and a gift bag of all gift bags.
Spending an entire day surrounded by like-minded women was incredible, to say the least. Here are my top 3 takeaways from the conference.
1. Just Do It
Unfortunately, there seems to be a huge misconception floating around about pursuing your passion. And yes, before this experience, I was right there with you. I’ve fallen for it too.
Often phrased as “taking the leap,” following your passion and starting out on your own is overshadowed with such negative connotations. I’m here to set the record straight, with a little help from some inspiring words brought to you by Maxie McCoy.
“There’s no such thing as the big leap, it’s small steps every day.” — Maxie McCoy
*insert clapping emoji here* Seriously though, I couldn’t agree more with this quote. “Taking the leap,” sounds scary and overly negative. Why am I jumping? What am I landing on? What if I don’t land at all?
No, no, and no. Some steps are scarier than others, but it really is about building a plan for where you are, where you want to be and how you’re going to get there.
In the end, the longer you take to think about getting ready for “the leap,” the more time you’re wasting.
2. Creativity Takes Courage
When starting out, or even after years of working in any industry, saying no is something we’ve all had trouble with at one point or another. This holds especially true when defending your creative work.
“When it comes to creative compromises, pick the hill you want to die on.” — Zelda Williams
This is something to remember in negotiations, pitch meetings and even just general meetings. If you’re willing to give up every part of your project, did you really put your best effort in it? There should always be one part of any project that is the main reason behind doing it. If that part is lost, it may be better to not continue on at all.
It’s easy to lose sight of why you started, especially if you are worried about losing a project or the client altogether. When pitching your project, or even yourself, don’t be afraid to say no and fight for what you believe in.
Creativity takes courage.
3. Don’t Undervalue Your Own Talent
At times, working as a creative freelancer/ contractor is extremely tough. Figuring out what you want to do, where you should start, and of course, how much you want to make.
When I first started my side-hustle, I had no idea what I was doing and was extremely afraid to talk about money.
Real talk—No one feels comfortable talking about money. Talking about money feels extremely taboo in the workplace and in negotiations. I was too scared to negotiate my first full-time salary because I was uncomfortable.
Fast forward. Now, I’m expected to put a price on what my services are worth? Full-stop.
One of my favorite quotes, that I am plastering all over my walls this week, comes from Christina Martinez, the creator of New Darlings:
“Whatever you think you’re worth. Double it. If you’re the face of something, it’s really hard to put a value on yourself.” — Christina Martinez
After hearing this, the lightbulb finally went off in my head. Yes, it’s hard. But, you don’t want to sell yourself short, and you can’t undervalue your own talent.
What are some quotes that inspire you? Let me know in the comments below!