My time at Altitude Summit, 2016

One of the best things about having a corporate career is the time and money your company gives you for personal development. It has been six months since I quit my job and I quickly recognized how much I was missing that aspect of my professional life.

I’ve been a one-woman show these last few months and attending Alt Summit last week was just what I needed to awaken creativity, make some new friends, and learn from the best. This conference filled my cup in so many ways and quenched my thirst for inspiration both in the professional and personal sense. It was as if my own personal bartender kept following me everywhere, topping me off. (Cheers, ladies. Cheers!)

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I’m so grateful to have hit it off with my amazing roommate Lindsey (in stripes above), from the blog Swiss Lark. I found myself continually jotting down her advice and random things she would say to me in passing, like they were nothing. But they were something, alright. We talked about motherhood a lot. We talked about taking time away for ourselves and she said, “Someone told me we shouldn’t be looking at it like it’s me first. It’s me, too.” Brilliant, right?

My Alt highlight reel includes a design camp brush lettering session with the talented Bianca Mascorro, a talk on creativity from Justina Blakeney, and an emotional feel-all-the-feels closing keynote from Elle Luna. Another standout was the mini parties on Friday night. I raged the silent disco party…

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We were in a room with tables and refreshments and a dance floor and all was rather polite and quiet when I got there. People were mingling, exchanging compliments and business cards, taking selfies and swag, the usual. But the second you put on the headphones and hit the dance floor you are suddenly transported to an alternate universe where there is nothing but dancing.

The music is rowdy and all-consuming. Your body has no choice but to move. The other people with headphones understand. Together you move to the rhythm. You have your own agenda; dancing. The songs may not be your taste but in this moment, they are savory. You feel the energy, not the people who may be staring at you from across the way. And this was kind of symbolic to me.

It reminded me of the Brian Andreas quote that was my second post ever on this blog:

“She waved at all the people on the train & later, when she saw they didn’t wave back, she started singing songs to herself & it went that way the whole day & she couldn’t remember having a better time in her life.”

-Brian Andreas Mostly True

After I toured the rest of the mini-parties, I went back to our room which was conveniently just down the hall, on the same floor. I changed into a t-shirt. Sat down. Had some water. Got up. And went back to disco some more. True story.

Reflecting on everything now, it’s kind of like my entire experience at Alt was a disco. Because upon checkout, it felt like I was taking the headphones off again. So in the coming year, I’m going to do all that I can to keep the music going. To keep dancing. To raise my glass when I need to clink it with others, and to fill my cup once more with the wisdom from my new friends.

How are you keeping your cups full these days? And have you ever experienced the crazy fun that is the silent disco? Ha! I’d love to hear.

[Photos by Justin Hackworth and Brooke Dennis for Alt Summit]

7 thoughts on “My time at Altitude Summit, 2016

  1. Oh, Rachel!! Today, I cranked up some Adele, and sang at the top of my lungs to my old self “Hello from the other siiiiiiide” The shift in the universe this week has been something special. Thank you so much for sharing your experience with it. I raise my glass to you, and would love any chance to silent disco with you.

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  2. I went to a silent disco in Amsterdam and it was the most fun EVER. It was probably 5 years ago now and I haven’t stopped thinking about how to get to another one! There’s nothing like it!

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