--the real star of the show, my necklace
Sorry for all the crickets around here, but I just got back from a whirlwind, last minute trip to Utah to attend Alt Summit last week and I'm still riding the high.
Perhaps if you've been around the blogging circles for years you've heart of Alt Summit the well known blogging/design focused conference. I used to look on from afar with a slight pang in my heart--a little jealous, a little smug and a little like Andie in Pretty in Pink pretending that I don't care that much about Prom (Alt), when in reality not only would I love to go to Prom (Alt), but I'd kill it so hard I'd design and sew my own dress from 2 vintage dresses completely destroying every other mall-made dress on the dance floor. Figuratively speaking of course, because at Alt there are literally dozens of women walking around in clothes of their own designs and I wasn't one of them. The point is, like Andie, I really wanted go but knew I'd feel a measure of self-consciousness once I was there. But unlike Andie, the amazing thing is I have never run into a mean-girl at Alt and have always felt welcomed with open arms.
This is actually my third time going and while it was super last minute I'm really glad I went. Like "I feel like the Universe wanted me to go to Alt" glad I went. I thought I'd do a quick re-cap of Alt, sharing some notes and some favorite quotes with you. I know that not everyone can or even wants to go to Alt, so don't think of this so much as a pro-Alt post, but rather as a pro-"find your people, the kind who share generously, who want to help you achieve your goals and give light and kindness while doing so" kind of post. For me Alt just happens to be that space, but for you maybe you have a tight knit group of friends from college, or you attend a writers retreat, or a conference of a different kind, or perhaps you run marathons...whatever it is, I hope you have or find an inspiring group of people to learn from and belong to.
So what is Alt like? Well it's a bit of this:
But also a bit of this.
Oddly enough, even a little of this.
You might even find yourself listening to a former vampire-slayer about her new business,
Or a tech designer turned artist who's final words bring you to tears.
You connect with new friends...
...and see old friends that go waaaay back! (We met in our freshman year college guitar class!)
You also pretend to be the boss of the white couch. (hashtag hugenerd)
Also, don't forget fake laughing in a photo booth...(so many photo booths!)
You even get your portrait drawn by a well-known illustrator and author who immediately recognizes you from your days in Hawaii almost 20 years ago! Crazy!
There are classes, design camps, small groups meetings, sponsored lounges, parties, connections, swag, giveaways, business cards, food, dancing, ideas, kindred spirits, and more photos booths than you can shake a stick at.
I took copious notes and thought I'd share some of my favorite quotes or ideas with you below:
No one needs to validate or co-sign on your goals for you to start pursuing them...Goal setting is a way to design a life that you love. There are no "should's" or "have-to's" you only set goals that make you feel good. --Monique Malcom
We are not any one thing. Allow yourself the ability to change and be a different character...and let others do the same. --Jihan Zencirli
If I won't do it for free, I won't do it for money.... If you don't believe in yourself, you can't ask others to believe in you. --Sarah Michelle Gellar
Children don't yet have the box that adults are always trying to think out of.--Justina Blakeney on Creativity
What if we transformed our very life into a work of art? Ariana Huffington wrote that Picasso's art and life became so thoroughly mixed that what he did, became what he was. --Elle Luna
It was so hard to leave my family at home, especially my babies, but so worth it at the same time. I'm curious, do you have a workshop, retreat, project, or group that you attend that keeps you motivated and pursuing your goals? I'd love to hear more about what you do to keep pushing forward whether that be personally, professionally or more along the lines of a life calling.
*All photos curtsey of Justin Hackwork and Brook Dennis for Alt Summit