DC Entrepreneur Vibes

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I am three weeks into my staycation. A staycation is a vacation where you get to unplug from your traditional day to day task while staying in the comfort of your own home.  I don’t know if you can really call it a staycation because I recently relocated from Atlanta to Washington DC.  I am not sure if this is a permanent move but what I am sure that this part of my journey is tied to this location. I lived DC over ten years ago. The crazy thing is that both the city and I have changed drastically since then.  Ten years ago the city was more “urban” but gentrification has altered the landscape. This is not a bad thing, it actually makes the figuring it out part more interesting.

 

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The vibe of the city is also completely different from Atlanta.  Atlanta’s entrepreneurship experience for me was more focused on empowerment, starting a business and marketing yourself.  DC’s entrepreneur vibe is totally different.  The entrepreneurial vibe is more real estate investing, government and politically focused. Rightfully so because the government runs this town and “fighting the power’ (i.e. establishment) is very ingrained into it.  I am reminded of this everytime I’m trolling for things to do. I’m not gone lie, I am itching to march on Washington for some cause. I just haven’t figured out which cause.

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As I’ve been getting acquainted with the landscape and entrepreneurial vibe, it’s taking more time to get used to the question ‘so what do you do.’  It’s not so much the question but more of the tone that’s not sitting well with my spirit these days.  As if my response will determine my worthiness. I know my projections and insecurities are mixed into my perception.  I’m still kind of taken aback and annoyed by the tone.  It’s so direct and finite. I want to shrug and scream ‘I don’t know what I do. I’m figuring it out and taking it day by day.’  Although it’s a partially true statement, I am not sure if it’s appropriate for someone my age. The expectation is that I should know but the truth is I’ve chosen freedom and happiness over accuracy.  I am a CPA that blogs about my life and spiritual experiences.  I am also a yoga teacher that writes and aspires to speak publicly about doing what the hell you want.  I am also an entrepreneur that host events on quitting your job to follow your dreams.  I am also a landlord that travels. I am also on my ‘I support everybody black’ shit but I’m kind to people of all ethnicities.  I am also an aspiring podcaster that loves all these things equally…. so that’s the true response. I’m sure that’s confusing to some, that as a human being I have a multitude of interest that all tie into my purpose and life choices. I am taking it day by day and following what makes me happy but that tone temporarily has me stuck in my head about how to respond authentically.

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I also noticed while southern entrepreneurs believe in massaging you into doing business, DC entrepreneurs have a rude undertone. They aren’t paying attention to social cues. They want an immediate return on investment. They meet you today and want you to buy yesterday.  I’m like wait a minute so you not gone even pull out the vasoline before you make me bend over?  I’m not a southern belle.  I’m actually pretty ratchet but even I feel some kind of way about how I’ve been approached.  I’m probably being dramatic but I think you get where I’m going with that. I am also certain that I just haven’t met my tribe of entrepreneurs. They exist its just a matter of allowing things to happen.  I understand this is a new ball game, with key players and a system in place.  All in all this relocation and these new challenges are a source of adventure for me.  My adrenaline is pumping!  I love to use the puzzle analogy because it’s an accurate depiction of how I see life.  I am working on a new puzzle, it looks nothing like the old one.  I’ll start with the strategies I know and update them as needed. I am up for the challenge.

 

Peace and Blessings

 

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Creative Women’s Co: Chicago Retreat

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This weekend I had the opportunity to attend and speak at Creative Women’s Co first all-inclusive retreat in Chicago.  This retreat was designed to allow women to step away from their busy schedule, recharge their creativity and enjoy quality conversations with like-minded creative women. This was a three-day action-packed event in the heart of downtown Chicago.  The itinerary covered everything from self-care, stress management to gratitude and finding balance. It was held in an intimate space that supported creating new connections and potential future business collaborations amongst the group.  Each woman brought their unique viewpoint and experience to the table.  There was so much synchronicity in the room, that at times most women nodded in agreement as each experience resonating across the room.

This was my first time since college sharing a room with strangers.  I am very picky about who I allow in my personal space especially since we can be subtly impacted by the words and actions of others.  Although I wasn’t initially a fan of the idea, I decided to step out and go with the flow.  I was pleasantly surprised to find how much I had in common with a young lady from France and another who’d recently moved back to Chicago from Portland Oregon.  Although all three of us culturally came from different backgrounds, our stories crossed all boundaries that appeared to keep us separate.  Spiritual connection supersedes race, culture and religious background. It moves beyond the limits most of us choose to live by.  We sat up late at night after the activities for the day ended giggling and discussing entrepreneurship, careers, family, relationships, culture, and spirituality.  Each one of us discussed openly this feeling of knowingness that most people couldn’t relate to.  A knowingness that can be discovered by anyone willing to allow it in. My connection with these women was the highlight of my weekend.

Beyond that, I got a chance to share my expertise and experience with yoga and meditation. I discussed five ways to deal with the stress of working full-time and being an entrepreneur.  I shared my real life experiences and then lead the audience through a series of yoga and meditation techniques they could use in their everyday lives.  I  discussed the importance of creating space in our schedule to prevent burnout and manage stress.  The key to stress management is being aware of your stress triggers, staying attuned to your body language and using a variety of techniques to help you manage through the process.

I learned from this weekend that retreats are powerful ways to create change in your life. Retreats allow you to have a unique experience that only you and other participants can relate to.  Retreats also foster curating lifelong bonds with people from a diverse set of backgrounds. Retreats only require that you appear with an open mind.

Peace and Blessings!