10 Bold Lessons from Chicago Ideas Week 2017

(Lois Bernstein/Chicago Ideas)

Hey Bolder Sisters!

In my last post I shared all things Chicago Ideas Week. Well, I’m back and this time I’m sharing my experience from one of the most empowering conversations I’ve witnessed in a long time.

I attended A Seat at the Table: Finding Equal Footing Through Storytelling, which was held at the Harris Theater. Saying I was blown away by the discussion is a definite understatement.  As I exited the theater all I could think about was what I was going to do next, who was I going to help, and what I was going to create. The Bolder Sisters that hit the stage during this conversation were not only inspirational, but also left me with a few powerful reminders for living authentically and confidently.

The moderator was Robin Givhan, Pulitzer-Winning Fashion Critic of The Washington Post. The storytellers were Bozoma Saint John, Uber’s Chief Brand Officer, Lena Waithe, Emmy Award-Winning Writer and Actress and Elaine Welteroth, Editor-in-Chief of Teen Vogue.

I could end this post with just those names and titles, because they definitely speak volumes, but here’s some of the knowledge these sisters dropped on the mostly female audience in attendance. Check out these 10 bold lessons I learned from Chicago Ideas Week.

  1. People and your audience responds to what’s real. Don’t over think it, just be you.
  2. Our differences make us worthy. Your differences don’t have to be reserved for special occasions, but every single day embrace them.
  3. Stop trying to fit into a costume that isn’t really who you are. It’s awkward and uncomfortable and it will stop you from being productive and fulfilling your purpose.
  4. If you are not appreciated, throw up those deuces.
  5. Be really, really great at one thing first before you go pursuing a thousand different dreams. Be phenomenal, study and hone your craft.
  6. Make sure you’re mentoring and finding a way to give back. You won’t be here forever, there are those coming behind us who will take on what we leave behind, teach them.
  7. Let God order your steps. It’s much easier.
  8. Be really specific with your business and who you serve. You don’t have to speak to everyone, in fact you don’t want to.
  9. We are our ancestor’s wildest dreams.
  10. Figure it out and be a survivor. “If you drop me in a jungle, I’ll come out with a full belly and fur coat”

    (Lois Bernstein/Chicago Ideas)

While this was only 10 nuggets of boldness, there was so much more to this conversation. Sisters, we have a job to do while we are here. We have to tap into our power, use our gifts and when we have the chance, inspire those around us. These are a few of our greatest responsibilities. We must leave our mark, and leave this world better than we found it.

(Lois Bernstein/Chicago Ideas)

Bolder Sisters, which one of these lessons speaks to you the loudest? Share your thoughts in the comment section below. For more on Chicago Ideas Week, click here.

2 thoughts on “10 Bold Lessons from Chicago Ideas Week 2017

  1. #s 2 and 3 speak loudest to me. I have accepted that I am different. I don’t talk, think, look or dress like society expects me to and I am comfortable with that now. There is no ‘costume’ for me to try and fit into anymore. Thanks for sharing one of the highlights of Chicago Ideas Week!

    1. Yes, Yo I am with you. It took me a while, but I have to be me, all of me. All of the time. Thanks for your comment!!

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