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Seriously, there was so much good stuff said on the weekend it’s hard to distil into any sort of form that makes sense! This long post might be a bit hard to digest out of context.

So rather than a thorough roundup of the weekend’s content, take these notes as kind of an eavesdropping on things that I found interesting – maybe something in here will be helpful for you too!

on authenticity / honesty

Fabian Dattner: “Don’t compromise your values, what you know in your heart of hearts is important to you.”
Danielle LaPorte: “Why would you want to distort who you are in any way to appeal to a different audience?”
Beci Orpin talked about always staying true to who she is, no matter what kind of creative work she’s doing. She’s different, she breaks rules, she’s flexible. But she’s always herself.
Missy Higgins: What does it mean to be a creative? “To tell the truth in whatever way you can.”
“The best way to bring people on board is to live in an authentic way and show them how happy you are [as a result].”
Correne Wilkie (manager for the Cat Empire): “Live an authentic and passionate life and you can change the world in unexpected ways.”
Pip Lincolne: Be yourself – approach your community with enthusiasm and kindness. Be sincere.

on clarity

Correne Wilkie: get clear on your vision – the why, what, where and when. Clarify your motive for taking on this creative business. Also, define what success looks like for you; how will you know you’ve achieved it if you don’t know what it looks like?
Kylie Lewis: what is your why? (referencing Simon Sinek) Keep asking why until you cry or get goosebumps. We buy emotionally – it’s often not what we sell but what we stand for that appeals to people.
Jo Walker from Frankie Magazine likened people in a newsroom to lazy monkeys and your product/service/idea as a banana. She said to get their attention, “don’t just throw bananas”; you’ve got to mash and mash and mash it up, so that it’s easy to eat, and so the monkey wants it. So basically, you’ve got to be totally clear on what you’re selling and why it would work for that magazine’s audience, and then tell the story simply (“no weird waffle language”).
Danielle LaPorte: instead of striving for external goals that we hope will make us feel a certain way when we achieve them yet almost certainly disappoint (like ‘publish a bestseller’ or ‘make a million dollars’), turn it around and clarify how you want to feel – what do I need to do to feel the way I want to? Use that to inform your decision making.
Being clear about how you want to feel can interrupt the struggle: “this is not how I want to feel”, so you make different decisions.
Fabian Dattner: if you’re complaining about doing too much stuff, you’re not clear about why you’re doing what you’re doing. Learn to say no – if you’re doing too much, stop something!
Cath Nolan: when it comes to contract stuff, asking for what you want necessarily requires you to know what you want!
Paul Mason: in applying for grants or any kind of funding, clarity is so important. You need to be able to communicate your plans and ideas clearly.
Missy Higgins: figure out what makes you happy and make it your first priority at all times – not what others say you should be making you happy.

on connection / relationships

Correne Wilkie: What qualities do you want in the people around you? Respect others working in your sphere; don’t see them as competitors, but as your community.

Clare Bowditch: marketing isn’t scary, it’s just about the relationship you have with the people who are interested in what you do.
Pip Lincolne: be supportive. Share the work and achievements of people you admire. Be collaborative, not competitive. Work with others: open your heart and mind, challenge yourself and invite others in.
Kylie Lewis: as humans we are always looking for connection.
Danielle LaPorte: try to only work with people who resonate with the same values as you do
Fabian Dattner: Work with others – you are not alone! Only a tiny percentage of people can create, initiate and succeed alone. Value people with wildly different skills to your own.
Missy Higgins: “All people need is to feel like they’re not alone…simply by telling our stories we’re keeping people company.”

on self care

Correne Wilkie: self-support is vital. Know your limitations and what you need to be healthy. Eat real food (that doesn’t have a barcode and has only one ingredient). Move in whatever way makes you feel good.

Missy Higgins: Look after your body and your mind will thank you. Find your limits and respect your body.
To that end, during the weekend we:
  • ate incredible fresh food that sustained us, rather than giving us sugar highs
  • did mini yoga bits and meditations
  • danced like mad things to Happy when we needed a stretch
  • laughed a lot

on gratitude

Missy Higgins talked about changing her focus to be one of gratitude, and how it completely changed her world.
The multi-passionates panellists were asked the question, “how do you choose what passion to go for?” I can’t remember who said it (I think it was Danielle LaPorte), but someone said that you pick whatever generates the most enthusiasm and gratitude, both from you and from the people you’re connecting with.
That leads into…
Neighbourhood cat sez “just start!”

on just starting

From the multi-passionates: “Pick something and just start”. There’s no wrong thing. 
Fabian Dattner: don’t panic when there is a lack of clarity, when you hear other peoples’ success stories and question whether you can do it. 
Pip Lincolne: be brave. Just start. Take risks, do your thing, speak to your people.
Correne Wilkie: Just take action. “When are you going to start? Now…and now…and now. Do something every day to move forward.”