Focused Living, One Month at a Time

Sunday, July 15, 2012

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming...

"world domination summit"

to bring you this recap of an awesome event I attended last weekend, which has fueled my imagination and inspired more positive action than anything else I have ever done.  

Oh, and I'm going vegan this month but that's not important right now - this is.

Top Ten things I heard at #WDS2012

1.     I heard Brene Brown talk about vulnerability and wholeheartedness.  And so early on in the weekend I was already getting emotional and tearing up, uh-oh...And at the end of her talk I heard 1000 people standing up and singing Don’t Stop Believin’, and I sang along too (I  NEVER sing), and it was sooooooo much fun because who cares - if the other 999 people carry the tune and I don’t, it doesn’t matter anyway!  #suckitfear
2.     I heard Scott Harrison’s story and was blown away by his radical determination to build a different model in the fundraising space, where I currently reside.  And I wish one of my favorite clients would try operating more like they do, with transparency and accountability and sincere appreciation for their donors. I am going to try and work on this with them!
3.     I heard how Joshua & Ryan and the other Joshua live lightly with a lot less as minimalists, and they reminded me that there is simply more joy in pursuing less than there is in pursuing more.  And I also thought about how I was especially thankful there wasn’t a lot of random useless crap in our gift bags at this conference, but rather just a few high-quality, non corporate-logoed (yay!) useful items.  #winningatswag
4.     I heard Chris Brogan talk about superheroes and super powers and how sexy confidence is, but I heard him the most when he said you will succeed the weirder you get.  I know I am not brave enough (yet) to let (much of) my inner weirdness out yet and I need to work on this! And I need work on remembering people’s names more. #practicemysuperpowersmore
5.     I heard Audrey and Dan say a few simple but powerfully wise statements including life is a team sport, embrace regret avoidance, and there is no greater generosity that the generosity of spirit.  And I realized they are a great example of what all travelers should aspire to be, and I was so glad to have met them at TBEX last month in Colorado, then connect again here. #smallworldbigworld
6.     I heard Jennifer Lee joyfully and creatively share her right brain business planning model, and I thought Ahaaaaaaa - finally something like this for someone like me!  And I actually heard myself say out loud to everyone in that room that I was going to somehow work on my project every single day for the next 365 days until the next WDS. #whoathatsatallorder
7.     I also heard a baby crying a few times, in a panel and during a keynote.  And both times it instantly started to annoy me (and maybe others) - but fortunately its father wisely, promptly removed it from the room, and the second time it happened I thought - what is this world going to be like when that baby is my age?  And no matter what it looks like, I know deep down that I want to, need to, have to work on improving it as much as I can for the rest of my life, in the ways I know how.  #reneweddetermination
8.     I heard JD Roth humbly, genuinely talk about personal transformation and I thought about my own continued journey in this regard, and that although I know how to say yes, focus and action need much more of my attention.  And focusing on one thing at a time each month worked for him, just like I am trying to do here.  #lovingthesimilarity
9.     And then I heard Chris Guillebeau share the ultimate uber-surprise:  giving back $100 to each of us attendees, to do something awesome with.  And I heard the hush of the crowd, then the thunder of applause, and I almost burst out in tears, yet again. Overwhelmed, yet again, with the spirit of this conference - like no other event I have ever attended.  #generosityonsteroids
10.  And finally I heard the ebullient Bollywood music and the joyful cheers and laughs of hundreds, including me – gyrating and stomping with every ounce of passion and energy we had left, and I felt the floor bounce and quake beneath our feet – pure joy captured in one room on a Sunday eve in July in Portland.  #tryingtodancelikethehipsterswearenot

And now I hear my heart beating faster, trying to catch up to my racing mind…so grateful for the inspiration and motivation and renewed sense of obligation.  Now back home in the quiet, with the echoes of this remarkable weekend still replaying in the background of my mind, it’s time for focus and action - and for community, and adventure, and service of course.  Thank you for everything, Chris and your magical team, see you next year. #newtotwitterandhavingfunwithhashtags   @HeatherGeorge3


  1. Don't Stop Believin'?? Journey???? ok, I'm going to have a blast with this blog... I found myself dancing to some kind of remix of Don't Stop Believin' last Saturaday night!!!

  2. Thank you so much for the book. I have read it twice. Once quickly and once to scribble, notate, brainstorm. Timing is everyting and this was the perfect time. Love it and am inspired. Grazie mille la mia amica.

  3. Glad you enjoyed "The $100 Start Up," Shelley! It got me fired up as well - keep moving forward with action on all the great ideas in there. :)