Today I’ve been working on my presentation for next month’s INBOUND conference. I’ll be speaking on the Bold Talks stage, where we are asked to be storytellers of a topic to which people can personally relate – not marketers talking marketing. I’ll be speaking on the topic of resilience, and sharing some pretty personal experiences of which I don’t often talk about. These will include painful childhood experiences that impacted my decisions and choices throughout my life, as well as a crazy series of events that have taken place over just the last three years.
The point of sharing these experiences – as daunting as the thought is – is to give context as to why I’m qualified to talk about resilience – and why it matters for both your personal and work life. I’m going to share how I’ve persevered through abuse, moving as a teen (kids are mean!), depression, a failed marriage, legal battles, family conflicts, founding and running two businesses (including the high highs and low lows), financial challenges and more. It’s completely out of the norm from my usual topics of digital marketing, startups, technology, women in business, etc. But… sharing my humanity is a way for me to help others see that life isn’t just what you see on Facebook – we all have dark moments. The truth is, everyone struggles, we just don’t like to admit it, and we certainly don’t document most of those moments like we advertise the great ones. Look at the Robin Williams news – some struggle more than others, and some struggle in silence. I know – I’ve done that. So if sharing my experiences can help others, then it will be worth it.
After all, in life and in work, we have to overcome troubling times. If we can learn better coping mechanisms and how to be resilient, we can focus more of our time on the good moments. And, I can attest that especially as an entrepreneur, startup founder, and single mother, resiliency is an absolute must. There’s no giving up. Too many people are counting on me. I must keep moving forward. I hope to help others to do the same.
If you’d like to share a tip or two for me to include in my talk, please let me know. In addition to my own experiences, I will be including some snapshots of a few really amazing and strong people who I know that have overcome huge obstacles in life, and their tips for perseverance and resilience. I’d love to hear from you if you have a story to share, and I hope to see you in September in Boston.