Being Boss in New Orleans

04-Nov-2015

Being Boss New Orleans

Kathleen here. Being Boss is my podcast that I co-host with my creative colleague and good friend Emily Thompson. One day after recording we began playing around with the idea of going on vacation together. Then we got curious – what if we invited our listeners to come with us? We imagined maybe twenty or so “bosses” would want to take a vacation with us – when the sign-ups came rolling in we decided to cap what was now turning into a full blown event at seventy-five attendees.

Fast-forward to a gorgeous week in October where we met up in New Orleans with #girlbosses from all corners of the country. We got to know each other over sugary cocktails and intimate dinners. We hosted a masterclass and recorded a podcast in front of a live audience. We went on a ghost tour in the French Quarter with a man who may or may not have been a vampire (he tried to convince us of this by not blinking THE ENTIRE TOUR). We walked around with powdered sugar on our black jeans – evidence of a beignet fully enjoyed. We had our tarot cards read and carefully picked out the perfect crystals for our collections back home. I learned a lot on this trip:

SOMETHING MAGICAL HAPPENS WHEN YOU CONNECT IN REAL LIFE
I am so grateful to live in a time where we can be location-independent creatives from anywhere. The internet, Skype, social media, and all the technology we have available to us makes it so easy to connect, build relationships, and do business from your fingertips. The opportunities and convenience we have to connect online is so easy, that it’s also easy to forget what happens when you come together in real life: magic.

“Online connection and convenience is so easy – that it’s easy to forget what happens when you come together in real life: magic.” (click to tweet)

Being Boss New Orleans Pool Party

It would be impossible to describe the kind of magic I felt recording a Q&A podcast in front of a live studio audience. It would be really hard to translate the creative bonds and inside jokes that formed over coffee and beignets, an afternoon cocktail, or while walking down to Frenchman Street a bit too late at night. It wouldn’t do it justice to detail the work and life conversations I had with so many creatives who were brave enough to show up.

So I’ll just say this: there is something magical that happens when you find your tribe and connect with them in real life. Creative ideas are shared, collaborations are formed, and all the nuances you lose over the internet and even Skype become an integral part of the equation. An energy is formed that is bigger than the sum of its parts and it is worth seeking out and investing in.

“There is something magical that happens when you find your tribe and connect with them in real life.” (click to tweet)

Being Boss New Orleans

WE’RE ALL MAKING IT UP AS WE GO
Something is to be said for school, training, and experience – but the truth is: we’re all making it up as we go. If five years ago you would have told me I would be hosting a podcast and holding live events I probably would have thrown up on your shoes because “I don’t know how to do those things!” Don’t discredit or shy away from your own big ideas just because you don’t have enough training – you can always learn as you go. It’s so easy to assume someone else has it all figured out but the truth is we’re all doing the best we can with what we’ve got, and that’s usually never “enough” to feel 100% certain in what we’re making.

“It’s so easy to assume someone else has it all figured out, but the truth is, we’re all doing the best we can with what we’ve got.” (click to tweet)

Being Boss Creative Tribe
Illustration by Jem G.

PLAY IS IMPORTANT
We’ve all heard how important play is to being a happy creative. Up until New Orleans I was all “Yeah, yeah – I get it. I’ll go ‘play.’” The thing is – I had forgotten what play really looked like. In my mind I thought of it as going on a walk or even hitting the spa. New Orleans helped me see what play is for me: laughing until I almost pee myself, beers and beignets in the middle of the day, staying up way too late dancing, throwing beads off balconies and eating cheap pizza, exploring a new place, and maybe seeing a psychic. Going for a walk or hitting the spa isn’t play – it’s self care – and while that’s important too, play and self-care are very different things. My vacation in New Orleans really helped me to see that.

“Happy creatives need play. We know it, but we have to do it! Even doing fun things takes work, especially if you’re an introvert like so many of us are. But it’s worth it!” (click to tweet)

Being Boss Making time for play

YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN GOOD TIME
Doing fun things takes work. Sometimes it feels like a lot of work to schedule a trip but sometimes it’s even more work just to introduce yourself to someone new. I’m an extrovert by nature, but even I feel shy sometimes. Walking into a room with seventy-five other creatives could have been incredibly overwhelming – I could have found myself burdened by making sure everyone had a good time but when it comes down to it, we prepped the best we could, we turned on our “taxi lights”, and from there let it go. A lot of the creatives who showed up to #BeingBossNOLA were introverts who mustered up A LOT of courage to connect with their fellow creatives – and they had a blast of their own making. They took having a good time into their own hands and made it so.

All in all, New Orleans was a blast. We learned a lot and will definitely be hosting more events and vacations in the future. You can stay tuned and join us next time by joining the Being Boss newsletter here. You can also listen to our New Orleans recap episode here.

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