Whew! Last week was a whirlwind. Better Homes and Gardens invited a handful of bloggers from across the country to meet in New York to learn about working with the magazine. And so we came from both coasts and everywhere in between to talk style, food, photography, and social media. But my biggest takeaway from the trip? Friendship.
As I was getting ready to head to the Big Apple, James and I had a few conversations about all the pressure that surrounds these blogger events to look good. At the last minute, I was concerned that I was, perhaps, not worried enough about my clothes. Should I have bought more new things? Did I need a new lipstick? In the end, we came to the conclusion that, unless you wear your rattiest clothes or something Lady Gaga-esque, no one is really going to remember what you wore. On the other hand, everyone will remember whether or not you were kind to them.
Luckily enough, I met some really wonderful people through the workshop. Although I’d never met any of them in real life before, I had the best time getting to know PJ, Kirsten, Sarah, and Jeran, who met me for dinner the first night and allowed me to be their honorary fifth roommate on the day of the event, since my apartment was further away than their hotel. I got a chance to meet so many other bloggers whose work I also admire, like Rachel and Leah. And I was reunited with my very first blog friend, Whitney! I learned a ton from the BHG experts, including a great demonstration in how to be totally charming from Eddie Ross himself. (The girls and I decided that we want to have a dinner party with Eddie every weekend for the rest of our lives.)
When I hit up Alt Summit last January, I was really shy about introducing myself to people. But after that conference and during this workshop, I discovered that the way to make the most of these events — and the way to build great and lasting friendships — is simply by being willing to say hello first. A smile helps. Genuine interest in the people around you is even better.
So this week, whether you find yourself in line at the grocery store or at a professional networking event, think about saying hello to the person next to you. It’s a tiny gesture; it doesn’t take much energy. But it could make your life a heck of a lot richer.
P.S. I didn’t have a minute to spare in New York because I had to get home for some long standing commitments. So if I missed seeing you this time, please know that I’ll do my very best to see you the next time I’m in the city.
P.P.S. The team at Better Homes and Gardens is awesome! Thank you so much to Kaelin and her team for putting together a stupendous day. I’m excited to collaborate!