5 Reasons You Need A Tribe
Today I want to talk about your Tribe. And by tribe I don't just mean 'ooh look at her she's walking in with her Taylor Swift like crew, that's major #SquadGoals' kind of tribe - I mean the "these ladies are good for your soul" kind of tribe.
Working in the online world can be a lonely place if you don't have a tribe. We all sit behind our screens all day and engage a ton with our online community but it's so important to have more than that.
When I started this blog with Sarah and Kali (for those of you new to the program, 204 Park started with 3 of us gals) I had a built in security blanket. The three of us were our own tribe which was great as I had a built in group who I could ask questions to, vent to or celebrate 204 Park's successes with.
When I decided to take on 204 Park solo, I was lucky to have made connections outside of the other girls but it was only then that I realized just how important having your tribe really was.
Lucky for me, Kira from Northern Style Exposure became my blogging bestie. As a more experienced blogger and just the sweetest soul she was there for me to give me encouragement, help me with my frustrations and support me with my solo blogging journey. I owe so much of where I am today to her and her kindness.
Fast forward a bit to the summer of last year and I saw that a group of Edmonton gals who I knew through blogging but didn't know overly well were going to Blogpodium. I instantly had major FOMO and knew that I needed to go. Sweet Aislin of Mr and Mrs L reached out to me immediately and invited me to join her, Kristina, Nicole, Janine and Breanne in Vancouver for Toronto and I knew I had to say yes.
The friendships we formed on that trip and have maintained since have been invaluable. I truly believe that women who support one another are the greatest blessing. Aislin is so smart, sweet and supportive and an incredible listener. Nicole is a creative mastermind who is blowing me away with her new venture. Janine is so inspiring, she's so smart and accomplished and is such a strong support and cheerleader even though she lives in another city. Breanne is truly a one of a kind gem. She's the most badass rock and roll chick I know but also the softest, sweetest soul who is so giving of her time and talents and is a genuine friend I truly appreciate. And lastly Kristina - well, we all know I love Kristina ;) I feel sometimes like we're almost the same person! haha
Without getting too cheesy here there's something so refreshing about the attitude of connection over competition, and that's a motto I've seen in play with so many business women in Edmonton that I respect and admire immensely.
This year I'm incredibly fortunate to have added a few more ladies to my 'tribe'. I spoke a bit last week about these ladies but I'm so lucky to have Erinn, Marisa, Justine and Kristina as a part of my Blogpodium tribe this year.
Candace will also be joining us and she's another woman who I love, respect and look up to when it comes to business. Candace and I connected last year after blogpodium and she's not only someone who I admire for her business sense and ability to connect in the community, but she's also a dear friend and someone I'm so lucky to have in my life. She's also connected me to Christal who is incredibly inspiring and motivating and a great listener when I need to vent my frustrations or am looking for blog and business advice.
These and many more women have become my tribe and I am so lucky to have them. If you have a tribe of your own, you already know how important they are but if you don't here's 5 reasons you NEED a tribe.
1. We're pack animals
Instinctively, humans are pack animals. We're not meant to be alone all the time- especially when it comes to working. Collaboration is key when it comes to creative success. We need others to bounce ideas off of, get advice from and work through our problems with. Don't get me wrong, I need my alone and quiet time, especially as I'm an introvert but I'd go crazy if I didn't have like minded people to get together with on a regular basis for support and encouragement.
2. Your partner can't be your everything
James is an incredible partner, especially when it comes to my business. He's encouraging, supportive and actually very involved especially behind the scenes. For this reason I am VERY lucky. However, with that being said there are some things he just doesn't quite 'get'. Unless you are in the blogging, writing or social media business all the time, sometimes it's too much to try to explain and you just want to speak to someone who knows what you're going through. This is where your tribe comes in. Plus, it's great to talk about your career and business with your partner but I personally don't want it taking over my whole relationship. So having my group of ladies who know what I'm going through to discuss these things with means that I won't bore James to death with talking about it constantly.
3. You can't do it all alone
Running a creative business is like trying to juggle 8 things all at once while running on a treadmill and trying to solve a math problem. AKA - it's A LOT to handle and sometimes, we need help. We can't know all of the answers to all of our problems and we can't all be good at everything and this is where your tribe comes in. They can offer assistance with areas you might not be as strong in or even help to point out and then fix some of your weak spots. When your tribe is full of women you not only love but also respect, you can all learn so much from one another and help each other out. You don't need to do it all alone (this is something I'm still working on PS)
4. Accountability and encouragement
Like I mentioned earlier, having a group to hold you accountable for your goals and your work is a great way to stay on track. Setting goals is incredibly important but sharing them can be scary because then you know that someone else is going to be watching and making sure you're doing what you said you would. I'm looking forward to this group of us getting back from blogpodium and sharing some of our goals with one another and then checking in occasionally to offer support, advice and making sure we're all on track. Candace, Christal and I do this with one another every few months and share our goals and plans for our businesses and I always leave our group feeling more motivated and ready to grow my business. I also try to get together with last year's blogpodium crew for the same reasons. Business is hard but it can be fun and a lot less daunting when you're sharing your journey with others going through the same thing!
5. Having a tribe is FUN!
Most of what I've talked about thus far has been about the business side of things but quite frankly, in addition to all of that good stuff having a tribe is FUN! Who doesn't want to get together with their girlfriends and hang out over coffee or lunch or drinks. These friendships are valuable and taking time for yourself is so important for your well being. Every time I get together with my gals I feel better and happier - what's not to love about that?!
Plus did you know that you are most like the 5 people you spend the most time with? Give that some serious thought for a minute. Who do you spend the most time with? Are they positive and supportive and encouraging? Do you leave your time with them feeling refreshed and inspired? If the answer is no, it might be time to re-evaluate. I know that I try to spend time with those who are happy, positive and uplifting, because no one wants to feel drained after every time they see their friends.
Do you have a tribe? What do you love about them? Give me your thoughts in the comments below, I love hearing from you guys!
PS Thanks Sharon Litchfield for the photos (all except the one otherwise credited)