Twice a year we celebrate our community and the women who create life to their own terms. On Friday we gathered at the Festival Of Doers for the forth time to meet women committed to living their best life, ready to step outside their comfort zone and follow their hearts.
It's a real privilege and honour to be hosting this event and welcome on stage a stellar lineup of international women who have done just that -- followed their hearts and often through struggle, left behind a life that didn't feel true to them. And what is more, they have made a huge success out of it, in their own terms.
Our speakers have had the courage to question the status quo and ask themselves -- what does my success look like?
Our founder and chief doer Miisa Mink opened the day with an impactful talk on the power of our values. "When I started honouring who I am, what is important for me and trusting that my values will guide me to the right direction, my whole life changed."
"We say we want to live on purpose but then our values get challenged every day. You have two choices: you can carry on as usual, keeping up the appearances. Or you can start listening to your inner voice and trusting the unknowns."
Every crossroads demands a new iteration of you
Mandy Lehto shared with us her story of leaving the corporate world, crashing down in depression for a year, and re-building herself into the real her. "My survival strategy was achieving, and perfection. And when I decided to leave the corporate world and start my own business I was applying those strategies into my new life. It failed miserably."
Don't fight your mindmonsters
Hazel Gale is a Festival Of Doers regular, and her talk about mind monsters never leaves anyone untouched. "We all have mindmonsters. These gremlins that tell us we are not good enough, not pretty enough, not smart enough. As long as we try to hush them away they keep controlling our lives, but as soon as we accept them as an important of our whole selves they can become our guides."
Doing when you'd rather not
Sounds such simple advice, and it is, but when we are doers and we want to create the life we want we often forget to look after ourselves. That was the wisdom from Ade Hassan MBE, founder of Nubian Skin. She has built a wildly successful lingerie business but faced many snags and set-backs along the way. "When we build a house we look for a solid foundation. This is your self care. When we get busy the first thing to fly out of the window is looking after yourself. It doesn't make sense, why would you rip out the foundation!"
Share something authentic about yourself
Annik Petrou, founder of Speaker Express, how to introduce yourself in a way that creates an opening for deeper connection with people. "We tend to tell people who we are but we don't tell them anything meaningful about ourselves. Share a vulnerable fact and immediately create a deeper connection with others."
Women are at crossroads
Our panelists Sandra Peat (Superhuman PR), Diana Patient (Too Much Of A Person -project), Hattie Brett (Grazia UK) and Wincie Wong (NatWest) discussed tools and strategies when you are at crossroads. "According to Grazia research, women's goals have chanced dramatically. 10 years ago we wanted to get to the corner office. Now we want to create a life with meaning and purpose."
Who's on your personal board?
Journalist and broadcaster Harriet Minter shared lessons from female leaders. "Nobody achieves anything alone. You must surround yourself with people who support and be able to ask for help. Create your own 'personal board' carefully. These are the people who will lift you."
We all know that we get challenged along our journeys, and what we need at times like this is people around us who support and encourage us. Surround yourself with other women who have embarked on the journey and join DrivenWoman's community on Facebook, the Doers Tribe here.