July 03, 2017

Five Confidence Builders I Took Away From The Big Small Business Conference

confidence builders from big small business

confidence builders & lessons learned at Big Small Business

Back in April I had the absolute pleasure of both attending and speaking at the inaugural Big Small Business conference.

My talented and inspirational friends Laura Turner and Monica Welburn co-founded Big Small Business as a community for gifted entrepreneurs… and what a community it turned out to be on the day!

When I spoke to Laura about it here, I knew it was going to be something amazing but I don’t think I quite realised the actual levels of amazing the day itself would achieve.

Seeing a room packed full of inspirational small business owners, bloggers, creatives and entrepreneurs, all together under one roof to listen, share and just generally cheer one another on was such a boost in itself.

I, like many of the attendees, came away at the end of the day all fired up and quite frankly on a unabashed inspirational high!

Once the adrenaline had died down, in the days that followed, I also realised there were a few ways in which the conference had helped me that I didn’t even foresee…

white balloons and blue skies

conference venue for big small business

My Five Confidence Builders From Big Small Business

You’re Not Alone With Your Imposter syndrome

Lots of people suffer with this – I would say way more than we probably realise.

I often look at other women and marvel at how well they come across and the self-confidence they project. How may times have you done this too and thought “Wow – she just seems to have it all NAILED!”.

So many of us feel so far from this it’s untrue.

Saying boohockey to
imposter syndrome…

I find myself constantly having to silence those inner voices that say “You know you’re not really up to this right? It’s only a matter of time before you get found out!”

You know what I say to those voices now? Boohockey!

Theres so much more I could say on this subject – so much so that I’m saving it for a whole post of its own. But for now, just know you’re not alone with this one –  you just have to learn how to (keep on) overcoming it.

big small business conference pre show

attendees at bsb

My friend and fellow blogger, Jo Prado!

I can overcome my fears

I’ll tell you one thing I hate the thought of more than anything else.

Being in front of a room full of people. And talking. Hate it! I’m much happier talking to you from the safety of my desk at home in the living room. And I suspect most people feel this way.

My nerves over sitting up there at Big Small Business and chatting on the blogging panel damn near crippled me in the run up to the event.

Imposter syndrome
strikes again!

But as I’m slowly beginning to learn with these things, it all worked out fine. I may have started out a little cotton-mouthed but I did it and by the end I felt buoyed up by the support from my co-panelists Monica and Ella and the interest in our subject matter coming from the room.

And I just know this age old fear is linked to Miss Imposter Syndrome up there.

I also never realised how much a couple of days of adrenaline and nerves surging around your body can make you ache all over once its all over with!

blogger brand discussion panel at bsb

Your’s Truly up in the hot seat with Ella from Coco’s Tea Party & Monica Welburn

You need to be your most well self to do well

Which possible brings me nicely onto my next learning point.

In order to be firing on all cylinders, you need to be your most well self.

As I get increasingly nearer the big Five Oh I have this real sense of “use it or lose it” when it comes to health and fitness. And the ironic thing is that since I’ve been working for myself, I’ve become notoriously crap at taking care of me.

The time for self-care is always ranked lowest on the list when it comes to available time to tackle priorities. But here’s the thing. Two things actually.

I’m working on
taking care of me

If I don’t do it, nobody else will. And if I don’t take more care of me, how can I give my best efforts to taking care of my family and my business?

I was so inspired by keynote speaker, Kristina Karlsson’s speech and the importance she places on wellness, both physically and mentally.

So yes. I’m a work in progress on this but progress is where I’m aiming.

I’ll keep you posted!

elizabeth scarlett elsey at bsb

Elizabeth Scarlett Elsey

Hannah and Gemma speaking at BSB

Hannah McIntyre & Gemma Nash

Don’t accept No For An Answer

The common theme among all the speakers at the conference and the impetus behind their stories (and there were some AMAZING stories!), was don’t accept the word no.

Find another way.

Sometimes that fateful no can come from (yes again!), imposter syndrome. We tell ourselves no we can’t… because thats a whole lot easier and involves far less stress in the short term.

Sometimes we’re told no by other people. Pretty much all the speakers had faced a few No’s at some point in their business journeys. But they carried on regardless and found another way to get it done.

Tenacious doesn’t even begin to cover it.

You fully understand what you’re doing…
so keep on keeping on!

Sometimes those around you might not be actually saying No. They just hint at it. You get the sense that they don’t really believe in what you’re trying to do.

That form of negativity is generally born out of ignorance and lack of understanding of what you’re doing.

Well you fully understand what you’re doing so keep on keeping on!

laura turner and lauren garvey at bsb

Laura Turner & Lauren Garvey

Kevin LaTouf speaking at bsb

Kevin LaTouf

needle knits lois avery and pod and pip founders at bsb

Lizzie Burckhardt, Jennie Hogg & Sarah Williamson-Jones

Women in business make for a hugely supportive community

…and we cheer each other on!

Thank god for the turning tide. You know the one – the one that rises and floats all boats.

Some guys do this too. Kevin Latouf (see below) on BSB Day was a prime example. As was The Amazing Oli… as he’s now known in certain circles. Oli is Monica’s boyfriend and unendingly supportive – he was a true BSB hero on conference day!

But back to the female community. More and more of late, I’m noticing the incredible levels of support that women in these creative and entrepreneurial communities are giving to each other.

Cheering on each other’s achievements…

They’re sharing knowledge and providing inspiration on a level I’ve not witnessed before. Gone are the days of keeping our cards close to our chests for fear of aiding and abetting someone else’s success.

We’re cheering on each other’s achievements and are there to offer a listening ear when motivation and that little bit of extra inspiration are desperately needed. Long may it continue.

At least this is how the community I feel lucky enough to find myself in behaves. If your community isn’t giving you the same vibes, I strongly suggest re-building a new one pronto!

monica and laura greeting kikki k founder kristina karlsson

BSB keynote speaker Kristina Karlsson

Kristina Karlsson

Long after the first Big Small Business Conference is over, I’m still reflecting on what I learned and how it can best serve me on this exciting path I serendipitously ended up treading.

And I’m already looking forward to finding out about when the next conference will take place.

See you there?

table settings at big small business conference

Below is the honour roll of speakers who all inspired and motivated with tales of their own Big Small Business journeys.

I strongly suggest sitting down with a coffee or glass of wine and grab a dose of inspiration for yourself by taking a look at who they are, where they’ve come from…and where they’ve yet to go…

Kristina Karlsson – founder of Kikki K | @kikki.k
Lizzie Burckhardt – founder of Needle Knitwear | @needleknits
Jennie Hogg – founder of Lois Avery | @loisavery | @jennie_loisavery
Sarah Williamson-Jones – founder of Pod & Pip | @podandpip
Elizabeth Scarlett Elsey – founder of Elizabeth Scarlett | @elizabethscarlett | @elizabethscarlettelsey
Holly Scarsella – founder of Pampleone Clothing | @pampleoneclothing | @hollyannascarsella
Ella Gregory – founder of Coco’s Tea Party blog | @cocosteaparty
Hannah McIntyre – founder of Hannah’s B&B | @hannahsBnB
Gemma Nash – founder of Blossom Yoga | @blossomy.oga
Kevin Latouf – founder of The Wine Butler | @thewinebutleruk
Laura Turner – founder of Hero Stockbridge | @laura_herostockbridge | @herostockbridge
Monica Beatrice Welburn – founder of The Elgin Avenue blog | @monicabeatrice

And not forgetting these amazing photographs taken by Sarah Lou Francis (@sarahloufrancis | @lapinblu ) and video footage shot by Lauren Garvey from A Piece Of The Party | @apieceoftheparty

2 comments on “Five Confidence Builders I Took Away From The Big Small Business Conference”

  1. Thank you for this inspiring post Amanda! I really look forward to reading your updates – your empathy, honesty, and generosity is greatly appreciated and I would not be the only one who thinks this. The photos were gorgeous too!

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