Lessons, Lessons, Lessons… again

I swear, I have been through these lessons before… but, I got an opportunity to re-learn them again this past weekend.

  1. The Universe always delivers me what I need most.
  2. SOMEONE must believe that I learn best when I feel terrified and vulnerable.
  3. It matters to share my story.

I guess how I ended up at the conference would be the best way to start…

About a year ago I met an amazing woman called Deb Leroux while eating a hotdog during a break at Startup Weekend Kelowna.

To be honest, I was quite zoned out most of that startup weekend because we had just finished ours in Prince George. It wasn’t until a woman, Deb, came in as a mentor to give us advice on the company the team was creating. I had written a few inspiring sound bites from her and knew there was an energy about her.

Bumping into her at the outdoor BBQ lunch led from one conversation to another and we stayed in touch over the year. It was one of those mutually beneficial relationships where we both uplifted and inspired each other to dream bigger.

When I told Deb that due to an emergency trip down to the Okanagan I could be at her BC Women Lead conference, she was ecstatic! Minutes later, I got a text from her asking if I would speak about being appointed to the Premier’s Women’s Economic Council.

With everything going on, I probably should have said no. Firstly, because the council still had not had their first meeting and there wasn’t much to say. Secondly, because I was the last woman on that list that should be speaking on behalf of the council. And lastly, I was just excited to be a participant at the conference… no need for the stress of being a speaker.

But on that day, with everything else that was happening with family, I was reflecting on the loss of one of my mentors. It was probably one of the reasons we had decided to go down to the Okanagan. Life seems even more precious when we lose someone. MaryAnne passed away at 59 and I could feel her energy pushing me into speaking and taking the stage.

I had gone to her after the provincial press release had come out with the other names of the other women that had been appointed to the council. You can hear more about the journey in the speech below if you’d like.

What you WON’T hear is why “SOMEONE must believe that I learn best when I feel terrified and vulnerable”. Because that was what I was thrown into the day of the event.

Everything was great in the beginning of the event. I got to meet Pamela Martin… someone I watched and had a great deal of respect for when I was growing up.

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She was inspiring and poised as she told the room about her journey in broadcasting.

I was also able to connect with a few people I had met previously and was also able to meet some new people in the room.

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My speech was only going to be 10mins and was after lunch … after the keynote. Well, had I known how good the keynote was going to be, I would not have been so relaxed over lunch.

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She was a consultant from the Humphrey Group. I had taken their Taking the Stage program before, seen their videos and loved what they did for women all across the world.

But when Diana took the stage, I had no idea how different it was going to be from the video! She commanded the room, was charismatic, FUNNY and captivating. OF COURSE SHE WAS… that’s what she was paid to teach! For some reason, up until that moment of sitting in my fear, I never thought about that.

Anyway, I looked right over at Deb and mouthed the words, “YOU WANT ME TO GO AFTER HER!!!!!” (Yes, it is possible to whisper in all caps and with 5 exclamation marks). So for the next hour I sat in petrified fear that I needed go up there and speak after Diana.

That’s the reason for lesson number 2: “SOMEONE must believe that I learn best when I feel terrified and vulnerable.”

Murphy’s law has it that when I am feeling good and comfortable… something comes out in left field… just to stretch me a little bit more outside of my zone.

Anyway, luckily, after the first few minutes of catching my breath, walking away from the podium that felt like a jail and ditching my ipad notes that weren’t helping me since my fingers were all sweaty, I managed to speak from my heart.

The amazing part is that after I spoke, so many people came up after me to tell me they were inspired by my words and for the courage I showed to go after Diana. So that’s where the last lesson comes into play… It is SO important to continue to share your story.

Life is good 🙂

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The picture of me with all the other speakers that day. It was just after my speech… so it must be me trying to find my pulse. 🙂