We all have our routines, which usually include work, home, family, friends, etc...but when is the last time you stepped outside of all you know and did something really sort of "uncomfortable"?
Recently, I participated in the Spring Unique LA Market, which is a market place where I have a booth and I sell directly to the public, which I love and its awesome! Before every show we attend a vendor meeting where they go over the details about the set up, show hours, rules etc... This year one of the things Sonja Rasula (Unique founder, girl entrepreneur extraordinaire) mentioned is they have a Unique Camp and she invited all the vendors to attend. The Unique Camp is in Big Bear, California...they hold business classes taught by professionals but the coolest thing about it is, it's camp! It's based around fun activities and it's run like an overnight " hi I'm 12 again" camp. When we arrived, they confiscated our phones (WHAT!), can you say "OFF THE GRID"! They then separate us into cabins with a counselor, mine was Margeurite, a lovely actress and speech coach seven plus months pregnant. What a trooper she was! We bunk with, shower, eat and sleep amongst 11 other perfect strangers. They make it fun by having smores by the camp fire, dancing, cocktail hour, games and having us dress up like our favorite emogis for the dance party. Picture a bunch of happy faces, vegetables and furry animals dancing to Queen!
It was humbling, a blast, inspiring and cool. This biggest challenge for me though, wasn't being off the grid, I actually got used to that quite quickly...it was not knowing one single person and living with 11 other women who were complete strangers. I would tell myself, "you've got this", I had to walk up to people and say, "hi I'm Jennifer, what brings you here"? I don't remember the last time I felt that sort of nervous rush, like the first day of a new school. The only one I had was me...and how would I now , as an adult, a wife and a mom handle this situation? I remember so many times telling my kids, "just be yourself and people will like you"...easier said than done, right?. I'm humbled and I'm proud of myself, even though there were moments where I wish I could have clicked my heals and gone back home to my family, to people who know and love me, a place where I'm comfortable. The cool thing is I stayed and I participated in everything I could. I started conversations with people in the coffee line, people in my classes, people that I passed by. The result was I met some really great people, made new friends and connections and most of all I learned that I could survive out of my comfort zone! Woohoo!
The photo below was taken the last night, they serenaded us to dinner through the majestic woods to rows of long beautifully dressed candle lit tables. I'm near the front with the white sweater, scarf and ripped jeans.
I highly recommend every once in awhile getting out of your comfort zone, whether that means traveling somewhere new, speaking in front of an audience, going to a movie alone...whatever it is...it keeps you humble and reminds you of your resilience.