5 Reasons Having A Community Matters - Galentine's Day Edition

Com·mu·ni·ty

noun

a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals.

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I made the decision to start my blog in October of 2014, knowing that I would have a space to explore my creativity and style. What I didn't know was the amazing community I was about to join. The blogging world is filled with goal driven, ambitious, creative women who have huge entrepreneurial spirits. And to top it off, the Denver blogging community is filled with stylish, kind, down to earth women! What a bonus! 

Last weekend I had the privilege to hang with some of my blogging girlfriends for a fun Galentine's Day celebration, sipping champagne, eating chocolate covered strawberries (oh and cake too), and in typical blogger fashion, taking tons of amazing photos to document the whole day. We went to the stunning Renaissanse Hotel in Downtown Denver, enjoyed one of their beautiful suites and had gorgeous steak dinner at their restaurant, Range Downtown. We partnered with some local brands to make our Galentine's Day extra special, we wore the most adorable shirts that are from the online shop called Fiercely by Valery. We ate the most amazing chocolate cake that was made by Beehold Cakes, and I must say that cake was so delicious it reminded me of a brownie! And as if that all didn't already sound like female heaven, we were surrounded by the most beautiful floral arrangements by Flower Bombers, which of course added the most gorgeous pop of color to our girls day. 

I think having a community around you who shares similar goals and interests, in whatever you do, is important. In every aspect of my life I have made a commitment to immerse myself in a positive community surrounding that part of my life. I joined MOPS to be around more Christian mothers with similar visions for themselves in motherhood. In our business we surround ourselves with motivated people who have had massive success in the field we are in. I have a community of best friends who are also in marriages that I admire and respect, that way we as wives can encourage and inspire each other. And in blogging, I have made a huge effort to participate in practically every community event that is available, join every group that exists for Denver bloggers, and build relationships with the Denver bloggers that I adore.

Because I think having a strong community is so important, I thought I'd share with you my top 5 reasons that I think having a community matters! Here we go!

1. Teach & Encourage Each Other

A candle never loses any of its light by lighting another.

Everyone has something that they can teach me, I truly believe that. Whether it be a technical skill or a life lesson I truly believe I can learn something of value from just about everyone I meet. It's so important to surround yourself with people who have mastered the skill you are trying to get great at. I love learning, asking questions and growing any chance I can. The great thing about it is, the more you know, the more you can help others. I get so many people asking me "how to" blog related questions and I am always open and eager to help and encourage as much as I can. That attitude helps to create a more positive community of people empowering people.  Being a part of a community allows you to learn from, and teach people in a way that is truly special.

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2. It Pushes You Outside Of Your Comfort Zone

When you are meeting new people, learning new things and and having new experiences, chances are that your comfort zone will begin to be stretched. This is a good thing. In anything I've done in my life, I have only gained success once I was willing to say goodbye to my comfort zone.  A few years ago meeting with a group of blogger ladies and letting a photographer take our pictures would have made me super nervous (in a socially awkward kind of way) but now I am able to just laugh and have a blast. Being around other like minded people in a community will help you stretch outside that comfort zone and really grow. They say life begins at the end of your comfort zone and I truly believe that to be true. I also think the best version of you is sitting right outside of your comfort zone, so go find her! 

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3. Being Around Like Minded People

It's such a breath of fresh air being around people who have the same interests and attitudes as you. You have much deeper and more meaningful conversations when you are around people with similar goals in life. It's important to be an individual but it's also important to have a "tribe". Being around other people with a similar vision and similar goals as you is not only fun, but it will challenge and encourage you in many ways. Like I said before, the Denver blogging community is filled with driven, kind, goal oriented women, and that is absolutely the kind of women I want to be spending my time with. 

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4. Sharing Ideas & Insights

When you are part of a strong community, it allows you to have access to people with great ideas and knowledge. I learn so much from surrounding myself with knowledgeable people. It also gives you the opportunity to share your own ideas and insights with others. Getting feedback on ideas is super valuable, in any area of life. Sometimes when we are the ones working on something  and we are so involved with it, we can easily miss something that and outsider can spot quite easily. Sometimes we are in the trees and all we see is the trees. Feedback from your community can help you see the forest. In the blogging world, creativity is key, and being around other influencers helps me to practice and stretch my creativity muscle.  

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5. Build Friendships

This is by far my favorite and I believe the most important aspect of community. I have created the most amazing relationships from making community a priority in my life. Some of my best friends have come from being part of a group or community together and then building a friendship outside of that as well. I'm so grateful for the amazing women I've met in the blogging world and can't wait to continue to strengthen those friendships as we all continue our journey in the blogging world. 

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All photography on this shoot was done by Alejandro Caballero with Avid Visuals. Thank you so much for the beautiful photos and for putting up with us silly ladies all day!

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Christmas Party Inspiration

My absolute favorite aspect of Christmas time is the festivities. Spending extra time with friends and family over food and drinks, picking out cute outfits for all your holiday parties, wrapping your gifts for the ones you love, baking goodies, Christmas music...The list of fun things going on around the holidays goes on and on. My absolute favorite is the Christmas parties. There's something about gathering in the cozy comfort of a friend's home for a Christmas party that sets the tone for a wonderful night of laughs (and I mean the kind of laughing that leaves your cheeks sore) and tons of storytelling. It's always a good time when there's the Christmas ambiance in the house, yummy snacks and festive holiday drinks. 

This year I had the chance to hang out with some other Denver bloggers at a Christmas inspired networking event. I am always so grateful when I get the chance to make new friends in the blogging world. All of the Denver bloggers that I've met through the years have been wonderful, kind, and a ton of fun. I had met Hannah ( @littleleebook ) before, we first met at the blogger event I hosted last summer. It was so nice to see her again and get to catch up! That night was my first time meeting Bethan ( @sipswithstyle ) and Alex ( @FeelinHaute ). These amazing women are incredibly smart, outgoing, super fun to be around and of course have impecable style (see pictures below for holiday party outfit inspiration). 

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I hope these photos inspire you to plan your own Christmas get-together. Even if it's a small gathering, getting the people you love together and making new friends is the best part of the holiday season. If you get inspired to plan a Christmas event, make sure to tag me in your photos so I can see everyone's fun this Christmas!

Thank you Katie Hutt ( @Katieleighhutt ) for being the photographer on this fun night and for putting this networking event together!  Also, thank you to the brands who took part in the networking event. Here is their info below! 

Cheese & Provisions: @cheeseandprovisions • Pearl Street Lights: @pearlstreetlights • Revo Sunglasses: @revo • Whiskey Barrel Coffee: @Whiskeybarrelcoffee


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