Okay so maybe I’m being a little dramatic… but if you’re an introvert you know the feeling. How each and every conference, event, party, whatever, sounds fun until you’re actually there and then you’re left with a feeling of why-am-I-here-I-could-be-binge-watching-youtube-in-my-jammies-right-now-oh-my-god-people-why-is-the-music-so-loud.
Yup, it’s not a good feeling!
The interesting part of the whole thing is that 9 out of 10 people I chatted with at Haven said the same thing “I wish I was in my room right now” “I have to force myself to come to these things” “It’s soooo loud in here” “I don’t know anyone!” “Why is the music so loud” “Are you sure you’re an introvert? You’re so outgoing?!”
Here’s the thing y’all… I’m not out-going. I’m a really good pretender and chances are you are too.
I like to say the entire conference is full of people who would much rather be upstairs in our nice quiet hotel rooms chatting through our computer screens then in a giant room full of people and noise. Let’s face it… if we liked big crowds and talking to people we’d be public speakers.
There’s a reason each of us has carved out a little portion of the internet to call our own, why we’re so good at making friends online and chatting behind our computer screen.
So why do we go? Why do I go if I’m counting the minutes until I can go back to my room, curl into a ball and spend a little bit of quality alone time to re-charge from all the craziness.
We Crave Face to Face Time with People Like Us
Remember how I said that 9 out of 10 of us feel like this? Once you let your guard down a little and realize most of us hate this just as much as you do it’s a lot easier to talk to people. I spent most of the first evening upset because I arrived late and couldn’t find anyone to eat dinner with… so yes despite allllll the crazy introverted feelings we still want human contact.
Most of the year we spend alone, in our homes, in our offices, behind the computer screen all by ourselves and we like it that way! But at Haven we finally get the chance to meet these people we’ve been fb messaging or dming on insta and put a face to a name. That’s an amazing thing even if it is nerve wracking.
We just need to remember it’s as nerve wracking for the other person too. (Am I right?!)
(Shout out to my sweet friend Jennifer who made these sweet little angel wings for the people in our mentor group! Technically it wasn’t my mentor groupcheck out her blog over at Whimsy and Wood but I was adopted in 🙂 She’s the sweetest gal online and it was so much fun to meet her face to face… )
You Can’t Grow in a Bubble
While there are quite a few resources to learn new tips and tricks for your blog on the internet these days (virtual tribes and internet courses are trying to take over the world you know!) there is something to be said about coming together to actually learn.
To find out what the latest Pinterest strategies are or the newest insta story theory (heck… I’d like to tackle what the heck an insta story is!). When we’re all together we not only grow as individual business women (and men) but our business knowledge grows, our businesses grow and the industry as a whole grows.
It’s wonderful to talk blogging with other bloggers… they understand all the terms! It’s like living somewhere you have to speak a second language. It’s possible but when you finally get somewhere they speak your native language life seems so much easier! These people understand what I’m saying!
Plus they like crafting as much as I do… just look at Thea go! Now this girl knows what she’s doing with a paint brush… if she had a furniture painting class I would take it.
Classes! There Is So Much to Learn
Even if you’ve been blogging for years and years the blogging world is always changing and evolving. Nothing stays the same and what worked last month may not work this month. I heard one gal talking about the Pinterest class saying “I’m so glad I went… I almost didn’t since I went last year but the class has changed so much.”
You may not learn all the things in every class but if you come away with new knowledge and new strategies to implement your blog will be better for it. Plus life gets easier the more you know.. when I took Beth’s lightroom class in person last year it cut my photo editing time in half, quarters, eighths… like so much time was saved!
Side note: if you ever have a chance to take Ariel’s class on taking your blog full time do it! My mind is still warped from all the things I learned.
If you learn even one tip to make your blog/life easier I say the conference was a success!
Building Relationships with Bloggers and Brands
Building a successful blog completely by yourself isn’t a thing. You may be the one doing the work day in and day out… you wear all the hats and claim each success and failure completely as your own. But you need a network… a tribe of bloggers to bounce ideas off of, share each others content, people who support you and vice versa.
You talk to bloggers online, theoretically they read your blog but to actually have people recognize you? It’s a strange feeling. I recognize so many bloggers but to me they’re big names! People I’ve followed for years… they have big fancy blogs!
I sit here and run my blog and never even think about people actually reading it. I guess I think I exist in a vacuum? Either way to chat with bloggers and have them mention things like my hubby or upcoming vacations is so strange. These aren’t things I’ve personally told them but that they’re getting from reading my blog, Facebook, Instagram… these are the connections we’re looking to make. To go from a faceless computer icon to real people.
On the other hand if your blog has any type of sponsored content then meeting and talking to the brands face to face is priceless interaction time. Brands seem big and scary but they’re really just people and when you sit down and have a face to face conversation it’s so much easier to work out what they’re looking for and what you’re looking for.
You’ll Come Away Tired From the Interaction but Motivated as Heck
The weirdest part of the whole conference is when it’s done you’re exhausted. You just want to curl up in a ball and sleep for days away from the world. BUT you’re so motivated to get-things-done.
I always come away from a conference with a to-do list a mile long. Since I live in the middle of no where it’s at least a 4 hour drive home (this time it was a 7 hour and fifty minute drive home… Charleston is far away!) and the quiet time in the car to think about all the things I could be doing on the blog if I wasn’t driving is torture.
Going on a cruise right after Haven was actually wonderful because I had a couple sea days to sit down and work next to the ocean. A friend told me once that she had booked an extra couple nights after the conference was over to hole up in the hotel room and knock out her to-do list before she went home and was swept back into the day to day life of family.
So is all of the interaction, the loud music, the over-stimulation that makes life as an introvert hell worth it? Jury’s still out on that one! But as long as I keep learning and growing from attending conferences like Haven I will keep going! Maybe they’ll even turn down the music one of these years.
Plus… you know… all-the-swag!
I’m not sure if this post made any sense at all or if it was just a lot of mumbo jumbo but if you’ve made it to the end thank you! Leave a comment below and let me know if you too force yourself to go out, be social and do-all-the-things!