A Call to Community
Community can be a powerful thing. This weekend we had a Sola Retreat in New Jersey. I have to say, I was excited yet nervous to throw a bunch of women in a beach house and attempt to build the community I long to see develop.
We all have a common interest (sola wood flowers), but would we be able to create a bond with long lasting affects to our personal and business lives? Some of us have businesses that use the wood flowers for weddings, some use sola flowers for home decor, while others are just getting started and are still in the hobby stage. But, no matter where we are in our sola journey, we all learned the importance of community at every stage.
The following are quotes from those ladies who chose to step out of their comfort zones in order to build a network of support and friendships.
A Call to Community....
"I learned that I need a community too!! Not just any community. But people who support, help and learn from one another."
"Having a group who genuinely cares about me is all the motivation I need to push myself harder."
"Empowered women empower!"
"The retreat was a great experience. All the information and support was amazing. To see a group of women with similar businesses willing to help each other is really inspiring! We learned so much that we can put into our business and grow! I’m excited to implement these things in my business, and to have these amazing women in my life!"
" Retreat was the embodiment of unity. It brought together women from all over the country with the only commonality being wood flowers! Retreat made us unite and bond over so much more than just flowers. We were united by a desire to produce a beautiful, quality product and a drive to succeed. Taking time to focus on brand and business development will take our small group to the next level! It was an awesome time to focus on ourselves and each other."
"Diversity in your community can bring so many talents to your group. When everyone is willing and open to learning from each other, you can't help but all become successful."
"... walking into that house, I could feel the energy there. It was absolutely contagious. When like minded women come together, there’s not a single thing on this planet that can stop them. I felt that in the room... "
" I learned so much to help me grow my confidence, my business. It was absolutely wonderful to connect with others in such a powerful way who love creating as well as supporting/building one another up as much as I do! "
"Community is like a family you choose. Everybody has strengths, weaknesses. Everybody has something to teach and learn. But in the end the goal is the same, help each other work towards the goals."
"I think women are so used to having to be strong and hold it together for everyone that it can be hard to lean. This group is a good group to learn how to lean. We all have similar goals so its like you get it."
"For me, the retreat was much more than honing my business and floral skills; it was about making connections with other like-minded women. It's amazing to me that a group of strangers from all over the country were compelled to come together, to an intimate setting with only one known common interest - our love for working with wood flowers. It was a risk for us all, but a risk worth taking. We quickly bonded, sharing our own experiences, questions and personal stories. It was refreshing to be part of a compassionate and judgment-free community.
This past weekend I can say without a shadow of a doubt, we did and will continue to, support, grow and thrive together."
" I don't usually share a lot of personal things but I wanted to share this with you. I went on a retreat this weekend, out of state, and met with other ladies from around the country who work with wood flowers. I was a little unsure at first if I would be able to make it work with my schedule but am so glad I went.
Through the seminars and events designed to share ideas and push us to step out of our boxes and become even more creative, we formed some great friendships that I hope will last beyond this brief time together. We were able to bounce ideas off one another and give each other tips to add further value to our customer's products and experiences with each of our companies. "
"This retreat was such a blessing to be a part of. Whether you were just starting your own business or had been doing it for a few years, we were able to really help each other in a variety of ways. It was amazing to watch how each personality complimented the person next to them or helped others bloom out of their comfort zone. I learned so much not just for my business but personal life too. I'm thankful to have met these strong, empowering woman and that we are in each others corner, cheering them to succeed."
" Going on this retreat for me has been like a caterpillar's life. Do you think that the caterpillar knew it was going to be able to fly or did it create the cocoon and just wonder “why am I doing this?” I did not know what I would gain from going to retreat, but I knew in my heart I was meant to be there. I came to this retreat just a caterpillar trying to figure things out for myself and my wood flower business. While I was their every women helped me, encouraged me, pushed me out of my comfort zone, and cheered for me to spin myself into a cocoon. I was vulnerable yet strong.... I feel like I left retreat today as a butterfly. Beautiful friendships were formed, ways to boost and grow our businesses were discussed, tutorials were taught, and we all left knowing we have a group of cheerleaders in our corners to encourage us, push us, and support us in all the amazing things that are to come for each of us as we spread our wings and truly fly! "
We naturally have a desire to be connected. Fuel the fire of community, so we can propel each other forward in business. It's far better to be successful with a tribe of women by your side than to be alone fighting for the top spot.