All You Really Need To Bring to BlogHer 2013

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Seth Godin tells a great story, the kind of story that changes the way you see the world around you.  In this classic post, he blogs about how author Amanda Hocking made a million dollars a year publishing her own work because she chose to “pick herself.”

“Pick Yourself,” Godin recommends. “It’s cultural instinct to wait to get picked, to seek out the permission and authority that comes from a publisher, talk show host, or blogger saying 'I pick you.' Once you reject that, you can actually get to work.” 

Before I was a blogger, (and a Mom) I was a magazine publisher, and spent several years traveling to trade shows and conferences, meeting new people and learning new markets. Even with this experience, deciding to attend my first blogging event, BlogHer 2013, left me feeling a little nervous.

I read with excitement about the BlogHer newbie breakfast with an inspirational mentoring twist, and the Friday lunch featuring the “birds of a feather flock together” that would encourage like-minded bloggers to sit together. I read with admiration about the 5K Sponsored by Best Buy on Saturday morning, imagining other bloggers rising early to run, while I sat savoring the quiet of a hotel room while guzzling my morning critically required pot of coffee.

There are  great blog posts online about what attendees need to know, with great tips from BlogHer vets about what to bring and the BlogHer conference. BlogHer speaker Gigi Ross has this great post about how to rock the BlogHer experience with professional networking. I found in-depth agenda details here, along with detailed blog posts that break down each track.

I downloaded the super cool BlogHer mobile app to my iPhone. (Open up conference materials first and read the tip sheet for the 411 on this mobile app. Set your schedule, find your friends and join the Twitter conversation, all from within the app platform.) I ordered some pretty new business cards from the awesome Moo, also snapping up the exclusive, still available (for a reasonable rush fee)  Blogher special mini cards you can pick up on the Expo floor.

And all of this helped me to feel prepared.  Having the right perspective can be calming and powerful, making us more confident about venturing out from behind the screen. The right perspective is what we all need to bring to BlogHer, and it’s pretty simple, bring your authentic self while "picking yourself."


Image: Kthread via Flickr

When I started blogging, it was a  passion that fueled me. It is that passion that becomes a bloggers purpose, and that’s what you really need to bring, that you. 

When I decided, just two weeks ago, to attend BlogHer Chicago this year, I started cruising the blogs and found lots of cool fashion posts about what to wear at BlogHer. Time flew by as I got caught up in the latest apparel trends and summer’s must have accessories, before acknowledging that wasn’t really “me.”

Excited about surrounding myself with writers and words, and all things blogging, I decided to pack for my true comfortable and creative self. I am taking my dress jeans and Converse shoes for during the during the day, and my new favorite Anthropologie tee that features a black vintage typewriter graphic with typewritten alphabet letters cascading down the front of the shirt.

Last night, as I tucked my daughter Zoe in bed,  she asked me about my trip. “ I know Daddy will give me my medicine,” she began.  "And Daddy will help me during the night, but why do you have to go on your trip again?”

I told her then a little about blogging and how I like to write, and that this is something just for me.
“Does it make you happy?” she wanted to know next.  I moved my face close to hers then, and in the pink nightlight glow of her bedroom, I could see her face start to crumple. My mother's heart knew there would also be tears in her eyes. “Yes, it makes me happy,” I replied and with that, she reached up and tenderly touched my cheek. And after a long sigh, she said, “I get it, Mom.”

And that moment is what my passion is all about. Blogging makes me happy, because I can connect and celebrate the simple, every day... one story at a time.

I hope you enjoy BlogHer 2013 as much as I plan to.  I’ll be the girl in the vintage, typewriter tee ... just being me!

For more conference updates keep checking the BlogHer conference page. Cool updates are popping up all the time. Like this newly announced Sponsored Track packed with jaw dropping, well-known celebrities and blogging greats like Lisa Belkin.

Keep your cool, and one last tip, if you don’t have business cards to carry, go cutting edge. Check out and make your own free, cloud based, mobile optimized, digital cards that you can text from an app on your smart phone.

  7 Tips To Keeping A Zen Perspective at BlogHer 

  • Pick Yourself, Choose Yourself.  James Althucher, author of Choose Yourself, Defines it this way: “Don’t depend on the trends, build your own platform, define success by your own terms, Choose Yourself.”
  • Ditch your elevator “pitch” for your “passion” purpose. In a sentence or two, share your story. Remember that passion that got you started blogging? That passion is your purpose.
  • Surround yourself with fun, friendly people. Positivity is energizing. 
  • Conferences are not just about who you “met,” but more about what you “get.” Soak it all in, listen and look around. Challenge yourself to learn something new.
  • Be generous. Follow life’s golden rule, the more you give, the more you receive.
  • Be nice to everyone you meet. You never know, who needs it the most or where it will go. 
  • Don’t stress. No plan? No worries. See numbers 1-6. Leave your media kits and manuscripts at home, because you already have everything you really need, YOU.   


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