This weekend I attended The Momference in DC and got my entire life. The conference that was centered around Black millennial moms is the brainchild of Simona Noce and Nikki Osei-Barrett, two DMV – based publicists, HBCU grads and boy moms who aspire to inspire, serve and highlight all things #BlackMomMagic. And clearly you didn’t need to be a mom to go as I was there.
I first heard about The Momference when my homey Trina from The Baby Shopaholic told me she would be speaking on a panel there. When I started to hear more details about it, I was like OMG I NEED TO GOOOOO (I mean, did you not see my vlog from our Miami trip? Trina and I turn up when we travel…lol). I was given a comped ticket and booked my own travel and I was THERE.
WHAT IS THE MOMFERENCE™?
The Momference™ is the premiere, one-day conference for motivated, magical moms of color boasting regionally and nationally acclaimed mom influencers, panels, celebrity keynote, workshops, mompreneur vendors and top-tier multi-cultural focused products. The Momference™ champions all things FUBU (For Us, By Us) and #BlackMomMagic.
The FIRST conference of its kind, The Momference™ is designed to Engage, Equip and Empower the melanated, millennial mom.
I sat in on Trina’s panel about business and picked up tons of gems from all of the ladies on the panel. You guys know that (or now you know…lol) what I do right now encompasses quite a few aspects of the beauty industry as well as marketing. I run this blog and its social channels. I freelance as a beauty writer for a number of magazines (most recently Allure). I also consult with beauty brands. (You can read more about what I do here). I have been thinking a lot about my next steps in the industry and have a few ideas in mind so it was great to hear from the ladies on the panel.
Me and Trina
“You really can’t balance, you have to be able to shift.” Trina Small, The Baby Shopaholic.
As women many of us are naturally great multitaskers and nobody multitasks greater than a mom. There’s always this notion out there about “having it all” (I even wrote about this here) and being able to do it all, and my position on this is always evolving. Right now I believe that I can do most things. I don’t say I can do anything because I know that’s not true and believing that will have me wasting precious time trying to figure something out that I could have either paid someone else to do for me or just move on altogether. I have also learned to not be so uptight and controlling about situations (I’m a Virgo, that was a hard lesson to learn…lol) and instead I’m a lot more mild-mannered and easy-going. If something doesn’t work out, let’s figure out why it didn’t and move on.
“Surround yourself with like-minded people.” Dayna Bolden, Bolden Creative Media.
The great thing about being among other people who are like you is the amazing amount of support and advice you get. When I first started blogging full time in 2010, I almost went back to my old bank job because most of the people around me were going so far in their careers (lawyers, grad school, etc) and while that was great of course, sometimes it demotivated me because I was on a SUPER STRICT budget and made way less money. Once I started to network and hang out with other freelancers who really understood this life, I felt much better. Your family and friends can be a big source of support but sometimes they don’t really understand your position and what you do and where you want to go.
“Fail fast.” Shante Williams, The Brand Chick.
The fear of failing is what keeps so many of us from living out our dreams. Whether that’s asking for a raise, starting a new business, buying a home, etc. the thought of failure is enough to keep some of us where we are. I LOVE that Shante talked about how failure doesn’t need to be a bad thing. In fact failure (and failing fast) can be one of the best things to happen to you because you learn what works and what doesn’t. I’m sure you can google and find hundreds of stories about people who found success only after MULTIPLE strings of failure.
Do your research. Christine Michel Carter, Marketing Strategist.
This might lose some folks because we’ve somehow become a society of people who want information spoon-fed to them quickly, but you have got to do your research—and this is in anything you do. Whether you want to be a Youtuber, a model, own a PR company, start a line of earrings, get a promotion at work, etc. you have got to know what you are getting yourself into. You need to take the time to know your industry inside and out.
Use your resources. Candace Montgomery, Chic Busy Moms.
Candace, who is one of the biggest multitaskers I know (and she makes it look so good, too) mentioned that her mother-in-law lives with her and her husband to help take care of the kids. Not only did this give me ideas to hurry up and have my kids while my mom is still willing to help watch them (haha) but it also inspired me to use my resources and find out who else can help me grow. There’s that saying that if you want to go fast, go alone but if you want to go far, go together. I’ve been running this blog by myself for a long time and in recent years have had help with photography, video, etc. but if I really want to take things to the next level with my next phase, I need to figure out how to get a team together just for that.
It was just so inspirational to be around so many amazing women. And it got my wheels turning for my next steps. As I already talked about in a post, last year was ROUUUUGH for me, but then so was my first year blogging full time. This year has been a complete 180 in terms of money and opportunity for me and I would like to continue on this trajectory. Being at The Momference certainly gave me even more inspiration to do what I plan to do.
Now you KNOW you need to be in the building when they do the next one. Simona and Nikki DID THAT. You hear me? That? THEY DID IT. Make sure you follow The Momference on social so you don’t miss a thing.