Whenever you go to a conference, you walk away after with so many ideas and thoughts buzzing in your head. Last year after Alt Summit, I wrote this post with my Top 5 Takeways and I found it very helpful to break down all the information I obtained into bite size pieces. Plus, any of these quotes could be easily printed and hung on my wall as a reminder of my time at Alt and my goals for the future. I hope you enjoy my top 5 takeaways from Alt Summit 2014.
1. “Have the maturity to decline things” – Whitney English and Hilary Rushford. These two ladies kicked off my Alt Summit experience with their panel called “Overcoming Overwhelm.” (Does that sound like it was made for me, or what?) I want to do a full post on this panel because it was fantastic, even with Hilary joining us via Skype because her flight from New York was canceled. I can’t remember which of these two lovely ladies said the quote but I furiously scribbled it down. And I don’t think it applies just to ideas and suggestions pitched to you, I think it also refers to your inner monologue that is constantly telling you that you need to do all the things.
2. “Follow your emotions” – Garance Doré. I admit I had never heard of fashion blogger and illustrator Garance before she was announced as our opening keynote, but her presentation made a raging fan out of me. She spoke about dealing with negativity online and in blog comments and I could do an entire post dedicated to all the amazing words of wisdom she imparted on us. But towards the end, she reminded us to follow our emotions when blogging, because the worst thing we could possibly do as writers is to censor ourselves just to avoid negative comments. I heart Garance big time.
3. “Be thoughtfully responsive” – Susan Petersen. This quote came from Susan during her group panel on Growing Your Community. Susan spoke specifically about Instagram but I feel her advice could be applied to several different aspects of blogging, from interacting on social media, to responding to comments, to working with advertisers.
4. “Schedule as much as you can” – Jeanetta Gonzales. Jeanetta hosted a great round table called “How to Work from Home and Not Lose Your Mind.” The key is time management, something I’m actually really, really bad at. I know what I have to do to be better, I simply don’t do it. So hearing Jeanetta’s presentation was a good reminder, and her recommendation to schedule – simply schedule – everything you can, was so helpful. The last couple of days I’ve been listing all kinds of reminders in my Google Calendar, which I already look at every day (which I got into the habit of doing after last year’s Alt). So now I’m not only listing my scheduled posts, but also any emails I need to respond to, phone calls I need to make, tweets I need to schedule …. basically my entire to-do list. It has been really helpful so far.
5. “One sign that you are pushing boundaries is a lot of failures” – Ben Silbermann. I’m not sure I wrote that down 100% correct so my apologies to Ben if I messed it up. I saw Ben speak at Camp Mighty in 2012 and I was really impressed with his wisdom and wit. Dontcha hate when people younger than you are more successful AND funnier than you? But I’m always happy to have a chance to hear Ben speak, because I always come away feeling motivated and inspired. It’s nice to be reminded that the dude that created Pinterest experiences failures as well. And this quote is just a good reminder to be brave and keep experimenting.
I hope you all are enjoying my Alt Summit recaps! I really have a great time at this conference and I love sharing what I learned. My goal is to write up a detailed recap for each panel I attended, and maybe even some of the panels I attended last year! So watch for those next week. I also have a few Disneyland wedding related posts in the works, so if you’ve been missing those, watch this space next week also!