Last Sunday I went out of my comfort zone and went to my very first networking event. Ran by Minding Her Business, the event encourages women in business to connect, collaborate and create.
As I walked into the stunning venue I was buzzing with excitement about the day ahead – inspirational speakers, connecting with girl bosses and the perfect Instagram space. Then I noticed the women. Wow. Every single one looked like a model and as I looked down at my $15 Supre dress, I felt like running out the door. I didn’t belong here amongst these beautiful, obviously talented women. I walked to the bar, took my glass of champagne and hoped it would bring with it some dutch courage.
I was lucky enough to be gifted the ticket from the #MHBTribe Girl Bosses Katie and Dani, so when I spotted the divine floral wall, I knew I had to get the courage to ask someone to take my photo for me. Lucky enough there were two ladies ahead who I shamelessly offered to take photos of together if they could help me out too. They did far more than that! When they noticed I was there alone they invited me to hang with them and I clung onto them for the rest of the day.
The speakers were amazing, the feeling in the room was incredible, but I left very disappointed in it all. My first thought was to blame the event. It seemed more like fashion people and I’m fitness. They’re supermodels and I’m just taking pictures with a phone timer. I’m just starting and they are already on their way. All the excuses that you allow yourself, thinking everyone else is better than you and assuming they probably had it easy along the way. Then I remembered Guest Speaker Renee Slansky, who opened the day talking about relationships. If you want to see change in your world, it begins with YOU. My attitude towards the event stank and my attitude to these amazing women stank!
When I was asked what I do I mumbled a reply about doing contracts in real estate and then a throwaway comment about being a running coach. The same way I used to reply when people would ask me about my running. “Oh, well, I’m not really a runner”. How many times have you heard yourself saying that?
You tie up your shoelaces with the intention of putting one foot in front of the other for exercise? You are a runner.
I treat myself and my brand as a business with the intention of helping others and making money? I am a business woman.
I left the event thinking that there was no way I’d bother doing anything like this again. What was the point? I met two amazing women that I intend to keep in touch with, but I had so quickly sank into my anxiety hole and instead of speaking with people, I stood around dying to know what each Girl Boss was into. What did they do? What inspired them and how were they making it happen?
How many times have you started running or fitness, it felt horrible and you barely saw results, so why bother? That’s how I felt. My own worst enemy.
The hour long drive back to Brisbane gave me plenty of thinking time. I started to think about how I could relate the experience back to running since one of the biggest lessons in my life came from running my first half marathon. I had read an article about an office worker doing it and thought I could to. So I found an event, got a plan to get me to that goal and finished the race.
We don’t start anything at our end point. It doesn’t happen over night either. What I realized on the drive home from the networking event is that I could apply my running outline to most things in life to succeed.
- What is the goal?
- Set the plan
- Be committed
- Gear up
- First time is the hardest but every time after that it becomes more and more of a habit
- Don’t try and compete or compare yourself with others – that is not what you are doing this for
- Learn from others
- Be yourself
The next event is in June and I intend on going in with the goal to talk to the other Girl Bosses and get excited about their goals! I’ll plan better, including conversation starters to help me feel less lost in the room. I’ll also plan my outfit better (gear up!) to be more of who I am so I can be comfortable in myself. I saw a girl there in her Nike’s & dress and I kicked myself – I had been dying to do that, especially with my piriformis / sciatic injury pain!
What do you have in life that these points can assist with?