This is a guest post by the fab Kelly Hollowell!

I had been looking forward to Abbi Miller’s Biz Babe Symposium for months. I missed the past events due to being out of town, so I wasn’t going to let anything get in the way of this opportunity. I walked in to a familiar face, saying hi to Sarah Buchanan (Biz Babe event producer and creator of INDULGE) right away. If you’re familiar with her, you already know the magic she brings to any event. The ultimate host, she greeted me and sent me on my way toward all the fun – matcha, henna, massages, new hairdos, and headshots – all set against the ethereal sounds of a live harp performance. If you need a visual, just picture heaven (in a yoga studio).

After matcha, new ink, and a fancy new photo (featuring my new henna), Abbi got things started. She curated a jam-packed day of business badasses. While I’d like to word vomit about 30 pages of things I took away from Biz Babes, I’ll leave you with my top 7 favorite takeaways.

High vibe

If I had to pick one word to describe Abbi, it’s “energy”…or maybe “vibration” because it sounds cooler. What I mean by that is: hers is infectious, delightful, and fun. Has anyone ever not felt happier or more inspired after being in a room with Abbi? I dare you to find that human unicorn. They’re probably grumpy or maybe dead. If you haven’t met her yet, introduce yourself immediately and thank me later.

Stay true

Why are we drawn to people and brands we love? Authenticity. We heard it over and over in different panel discussions today. The moment a brand strays, it feels phony. Sarah Buchanan schooled us based on her own experience. “Authenticity is growth. Every time I’ve failed it’s because I veered outside of my values.” The key to success is knowing your values and voice and never straying from them.

Define your own “rich”

During Femme Financing: Retirement for Creatives, Emily Bordner challenged us to ask “What do I consider being rich?” You don’t have to be living like Biggie Smalls in mansions and Benzes to be successful (unless that’s YOUR definition of rich). Your feeling of success and wealth should be built from what brings you joy and ignites your passions. We all have different dreams and values – that’s what makes us so unique and badass. You don’t have to give up your ideals or chase someone else’s version of “rich.” In fact, it’s better if you let your ideals drive you toward your dreams. You’ll feel rich well beyond your bank account.

Be proud of your worth

“Money is only weird if you make it weird.” Wise words from Ms. Abbi Miller – and she’s right. Why are we ashamed of claiming our worth? Whatever the reason, we need to get over it. Denise Cooper, a panelist during Sacred Biz: Intuition-Based Business Planning + Earning Authentically, blew my mind by explaining how money is simply energy. If you’re not bringing in enough money (or any other type of energy), you’ll end up depleted.

Look at the ways you cheapen your work. Where does it come from? True selflessness or lack of self-worth? Change the habit – Charge what you’re worth, and ask for it with confidence.

Our hormones are our friends

I took a million notes during this section thinking I’d share them here, but Abbi promised us a blog post about it (hint hint, Abbi). Since she’ll do a much better job of explaining this, I’ll leave this here as a teaser to come back and read her post. Trust me, you WILL want to read this. It’s a fascinating subject. The bottom line is that life is cyclical in many ways – menstrual phases, lunar phases, seasons, etc. Paying attention to how you think, feel, and behave during these cycles can help your business. Two people noted that they never sign contracts during their menstrual phase because they don’t feel as business-minded or powerful, leading to poor negotiations. Learn your own personal cycle so you don’t leave money or opportunities on the table due to cyclical shifts.

Start now

No, seriously. Start right now. “It’s never the right time for anything,” Ashley Heyburn, founder at Makers Megaphone, noted, pointing to her adorable baby bump. “You just go for it – Just start.” Even though I’ve heard this before, it truly sunk in with me at the event. It’s hard to take the first step, to be vulnerable enough to share your gifts with the world. The room was filled with babes both male and female who had done just that. Looking around, I was inspired that I could be just as successful as others – all I have to do is take the leap.

Community is everything

Our community is amazing. There were artists, writers, healers, consultants, social entrepreneurs, and everything in between. The event did an amazing job of connecting the dots between all of us. We even had an opportunity to tell the group our wants, needs, or dreams and get connected with anyone who could be a lead in that area. If I could only pick one takeaway from this event, it’s that we truly do have a community of biz babes who want to see and help one another succeed. Kudos and THANK YOU to Abbi for bringing us all together to make these connections.

All in all, Biz Babes was a success. I left inspired, fed, inked, and armed with new ideas. And the swag, OH MY WORD THE SWAG. I feel like I just went shopping. Thank you to all the lovely sponsors who shared their gifts with us!

If you haven’t yet attended one of Abbi’s events (or even if you have), make sure to watch for an upcoming opportunity – it won’t disappoint.

Need more inspiration? I jotted down every recommendation I heard so we’d have a comprehensive list. Happy learning!

Apps
The Flow

Lady Timer

Books
4 Seasons in 4 Weeks – Suzanne Mathis McQueen

Big Magic – Elizabeth Gilbert

Desire Map Planner – Danielle LaPorte

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less – Greg McKeown

How to Break Up With Your Phone – Catherine Price

Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman – Yvon Chouinard

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide – Nicholas D. Kristof

The 4-Hour Workweek – Tim Ferriss

The $100 Startup – Chris Guillebeau

The Art of Saying No – Damon Zahariades

The Artist’s Way – Julia Cameron

The Productivity Project – Chris Bailey

Walk in Their Shoes: Can One Person Change the World? – Jim Ziolkowski

Woman Code – Alisa Vitti

People
Melissa Ambrosini – Bestselling author, host of ‘The Melissa Ambrosini Show’ podcast, a motivational speaker, an entrepreneur and self-love teacher

Casey Neistat – YouTube personality, filmmaker, vlogger, and co-founder of now-defunct multimedia company Berne

Lauren Singer – Lives a zero-waste lifestyle in NYC

Podcasts
How I Built This with Guy Raz

Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations

Skimm’d from The Couch
Psst: This is my own addition to the list because it’s two female CEOs inviting powerful female leaders to sit down and chat about everything from celebrating career wins to the worst advice they’ve ever received.

Sounds Good with Branden Harvey

Websites, Businesses, etc.
Aspiration – Online bank

Buycott – Vote with your wallet

Helpsy – Organization that gets clothes to those who need them, while also keeping clothes out of the trash

Thank you so much for the sweet review + loads of info, Kelly! Give her a follow on the ‘gram here, and sign up here to be the first to know about the next Biz Babe Symposium! <3

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