1.) Blogs about Business
I totally thrive off of other people's creativity and innovative approaches to living their lives. Truth be told, I am not a huge fan of blogs...strange that I have one of my own now, I know...but there is a profound amount of knowledge to be gleaned from women who run their own businesses and create their own blogs. Here are three of my favorites:
a.) Caroline Kelso Weinegart's website, Made Vibrant. Caroline is a soulful creative who focuses on helping other soulful creatives thrive! This was the first blog and website that ever "spoke to me" as a woman interested in pursuing self-employment. She is inspiring, humble, honest and colorful! I'd love to meet her someday. Check out her work, her online classes and her e-books at her beautiful and vibrant site, www.madevibrant.com
b.) Natalie MacNeil, an all-star, Emmy award winning business woman has really made a splash on the internet with her website and business, She Takes on the World. Her goal is to help entrepreneurs shine. Check out her website at www.shetakesontheworld.com for inspiration on starting or improving your business!
c.) My newest interest is a women's specific version of LinkedIn, it's called Aprés Group. It is a social networking site for women who have taken a career break (hello, that's me) and are looking to reenter the workforce. If you are a woman who has left the corporate world for any reason, and are looking to readjust your career, relaunch an old career, or start a new one entirely, I recommend supporting and joining this new start up in your process! The beautiful website is the frosting on the cake for what a thoughtful and insightful idea the founding women have created. Check them out at http://apresgroup.com.
2.) Boutique Businesses
I find it truly difficult to not be inspired by the creativity of one or two individuals who have made it work with a store or something like a store. Here are a few examples of places near me that are crushing the lady-business scene. In my mind, I think, "If they can do it, so can I."
a.) Roam Mercantile and Makery in Jackson Hole is a small boutique that is dedicated to finely crafted hand made goods that support artisans, small companies and fair trade businesses all over the world. The store is a locally owned and operated women-run business. Not only is their merch drool-worthy, their style is comfortable - I wish they had a little book nook I could sit in so I could justify loitering.
b.) The Movable Boutique is a women-owned and operated business that holds a similar set of values to Roam Mercantile and Makery. The MoBo (as it's lovingly called for short) is an ever changing, always moving boutique on wheels. You'll most likely see this adorably decorated Airstream at a music festival near you. What a kick ass business idea!
c.) Pretty much any cupcake store I've ever been to.
3.) Literature of Any Kind
I love reading, and I do it a lot, but I always feel like I could read more. Whether I'm eyeballs deep in a novel, tearing apart the New York Times, not blinking as I read Malcolm Gladwell's latest and greatest, or reading the magazine to which I contribute (big shout out to BigLife Mag!), it is important to read. Here are a few of my favorite reads that have truly impacted my life.
a.) The Little Prince. "It is with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye." I've had my version of The Little Prince since I was 8 years old, and I've read it at least a dozen times in my life. I just can't get sick of it.
b.) Harris and Me by Gary Paulsen. The first time I read this book, I was in third grade. I have read it many, many times since then and each time it gets better. If you want a good laugh, and to connect with your inner child (hokey though it may sound), get this book IMMEDIATELY.
c.) Grass Beyond the Mountains by Rich Hobson. It's a true story about a massive cattle drive in British Columbia during The Great Depression. Here's a story about perseverance, adventure and blind trust. "Nothin' to it, boys. Nothin' to it at all."
Where do you find your inspiration?