I made an impulsive decision that night. I was listening to an online webinar put together by my friend Carrie Grace, and the speaker was talking about the importance of community for our businesses. I was making dinner, listening intently, and my heart started realizing what I already knew: my business can’t survive without community.
I already knew I needed community.
But for years, I strategically only engaged with one-on-one community. I had been a part of small wedding industry group that started with great ideas and vision, but left many people hurt and disappointed. It was competitive. There was a spirit of “why did that person get asked to do that photo shoot and I didn’t?” I knew there was something wrong, so I pulled away. I decided I didn’t need people to succeed – at least, not in that type of context. So I made one-on-one coffee dates with vendors and I talked to people who I knew would be safe, and have the same type of heart and vision that I did.
And then, a few years ago, a rising tide started.
Natalie Franke began a movement under the idea that we should have community without competition. We could be confident in who we are and that there’s enough work for all of us and what if we just decided to help each other? I don’t think she knew what kind of movement she would create – and that Rising Tide Society would become a GLOBAL movement, and on Instagram and Facebook thousands would join along, and local chapters would start meeting.
I wanted to be a part of a local chapter for awhile now, but my schedule and traveling always seemed to stand in the way. I even thought of leading a chapter – but the timing wasn’t right.
Then this winter, I came to spend time in upstate New York, where my fiancé are going to live after we get married this fall!! I came to make connections and meet people and just do life closer to him. And I realized something that I never had to realize before: while I have a portfolio and a following and a thriving business in downstate New York, suddenly, nobody knew who I was. Nobody knew my face. And I could have the portfolio but if nobody knows me, my business will not thrive.
I decided to do something new…I decided to give.
I slowly met people and asked them what their needs were and listened to their stories.
And in that moment in the kitchen, I decided to finally take the leap to lead a Rising Tide Society group. I just signed up and told Derek “Honey, I just applied to be a leader. Like right now!” The next day, I was accepted and they set up the Syracuse group, and I jumped on the phone to chat with an RTS leader who was so encouraging. (And an amazing artist by the way – check out @artbymegan!)
Even I don’t think I knew what I was doing in that moment in the kitchen. Since then, I started finding a group of people hungry to connect, and I think, hungry to help each other. I know I am!
So tonight, we’re meeting for our first monthly meeting and I’m SO excited!!
I just wanted to share my journey with you because there is ALWAYS a community of good hearted people out there. If you don’t follow along with Rising Tide Society – check them out – and let’s make waves, friends!!
If you’re in the Syracuse area and want to connect with us, please comment on this blog post or send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org!!