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5 Powerful Takeaways From The Find Your Light Conference
By In Her Shoes Guest Contributor: Tamera Darden of Darden Creative
Tamera Darden, Founder of Darden Creative
Last weekend I hosted the 2nd annual Find Your Light Creative Conference and it certainly fed my soul. The second time around is always the sweetest and I couldn’t have been happier with the experience.
The Find Your Light Creative Conference is a one day conference covering topics that help uplift and motivate millennial creative entrepreneurs of color. The experience is certainly for individuals who want to elevate their visual content and leverage social media for their business, but most importantly, for people who want to live a purpose driven life.
This year, conference topics included how to create captivating flat lay content, how to leverage Instagram for your business, the right ways to finance your business, how to find your voice, and the importance of self care.
It was a full roster and the speakers certainly brought their A game! Thank you to Bola Okunbi (Clever Girl Finance), Jacqueline Yates (Personal Brand Panelist), Lisa Rosado (Personal Brand Panelist), Latham Thomas (Self Care), Nicaila Matthews of Side Hustle Pro (Instagram for your Business) and Shanavier McLemore (Personal Brand Panelist) for sharing their time and gems with the attendees.
There were so many takeaways from this year’s conference, but here are 5 things I know for sure (cue Oprah):
- Execution is the key to success:
So many gems were shared during the Personal Brand: Finding Your Voice panel. Lisa Rosado (The Style Theory Collective), Jacqueline Laurean Yates (Yahoo! Beauty) and Shanavier McLemore (Black Girls Sew) were candid and honest about their personal journey and offered much insight into how they stepped into their purpose. When asked to share one piece of advice, Jacqueline offered to not let fear stop you from execution. A person can have an idea, but it means nothing if you do not execute. Execution regardless of perfection, gives way to more insight and momentum to keep going in the pursuit of your dreams.
- Be okay with taking a break:
The Importance of Self Care session with Latham Thomas (Mama Glow, Glow Maven) fed everyone’s soul. And do not get me started on the unexpected 10 minute meditation session led by Latham at the end of the event. It was truly a beautiful experience. One attendee asked Latham, how does she heal or take care of herself when things get difficult. Latham was so honest and shared that sometimes you have to step away from the noise. Taking a break from social media or even technology to get back to self is something everyone should do. She also recommended adding meditation to one’s daily practice, something I do everyday.
- Do not mix business with pleasure:
The Money Talks session was certainly an eye-opener. So many of us go into business with limited resources due to lack of access and circumstances. So when we do begin to bring in the big bucks, we have to make sure we protect our assets and have the right paperwork in order, STAT! Bola (Clever Girl Finance) recommends all businesses to create a business plan, set up your business as an LLC and separate your business assets from your personal assets. Those two items are certainly on my list to do immediately.
- Trust your instincts:
The common thread throughout the conference was the idea of trusting your inner voice and intuition. It was mentioned several times during the Personal Brand and Self Care sessions. Many women on the Personal Brand panel including myself realized that we wrote down our true dreams and aspirations years ago. While the journey is long and steady you must always believe that your true dreams and aspirations will always come to life in due time.
- Break away from the hustle:
I’m guilty of this and I’m sure many of you out there are, too. The term hustle is sometimes pushed down our throats. Hell there is a song called “Hustle Hard.” The goal of being a business owner is not to always hustle. As Latham put it, focus on the work and the true rewards will eventually come in due time. Running oneself ragged gets you nowhere but the hospital. So instead of the hustle, simply focus on the work, one day at a time and enjoy the journey.
Producing and executing a conference with a full roster is no small feat and you certainly cannot do it alone. It takes people who also believe in your dream and will do the work with you, providing emotional and mental support.
When the idea for the first conference came in May 2016, I was completely terrified. How would I secure a venue? Who would speak at the event? Food? Who would want to attend? So many thoughts came to mind. But I knew I owed it to myself to followthrough to the completion of the event. I’m so happy that I did.
I wanted to create a space for women of color to connect, build and uplift. There are so many times that our narrative gets forgotten and is not included. I wanted to create a event covering content that many of us needed and quite honestly deserve, without the exorbitant price tag.
Two conferences down and who knows how many to go!
P.S. The next Find Your Light Creative Conference will be held in Washington, D.C. To stay on top of updates, visit findyourlight.info to sign up for the newsletter.
Tamera Darden, is the creator and founder of Darden Creative. Darden Creative is a boutique digital agency that specializes in visual content development and creation for businesses and influencers. To find her online, visit dardencreative.com or on Instagram: @darden_creative Tamera created the Find Your Light Creative Conference to fill the void of elevated, curated workshops/conferences for creative entrepreneurs of color. The conference is certainly for individuals who want to elevate their visual content and leverage social media for their business, but most importantly, for people who want to live a purpose driven life.