Next Boston speaker
By Steve Molter
Meeting people can be an intimidating experience. It takes a lot of vulnerability to open yourself up—even just a little bit—to a stranger.
The lengths we go to in the name of self-protection—staying home instead of going out, putting off that phone call to a friend when you’re feeling like you’ve got nothing noteworthy to share—often belie the vulnerable truths within ourselves that seek companionship, acceptance, and love.
When we’re able to be honest without judging the negative thoughts and views we may hold about ourselves, we’re able to tap into our internal truths and see ourselves for who we really are: humans deserving love and honesty. And when we get to a point when we see ourselves as a human deserving love and honesty, we’re then able to see those around us in the same light.
October’s speaker AK Ikwuakor spoke about just this in his moving and heartfelt talk. “Everyone is a book,” he said. “The pages of your story is what makes you who you are. We each have our own story, our own why, our own motivations, and we owe it to ourselves to read each other’s stories and learn to understand each other.”
He conducted a simple and powerful exercise in which each attendee received a piece of paper and a pen, and was asked to write down as many words, feelings, descriptors that define who they are as a person. After a few minutes of scribbling, we all pondered our list and patted ourselves flatteringly on the backs that we were pretty awesome people. AK then had us cross off half of that list while bringing focus to determine what truly defines us.
Groans and nervous laughter permeated through the crowd when he asked us to whittle that list to only five items. And as you can imagine, he didn’t stop there…he instructed us to get that list of five down to one item. One item that encapsulated who each of us is as a human being. Not an easy task. A task in which each person in that room had to be brutally honest with themselves.
During the Q&A portion of the event, an attendee asked AK what his one item was on his list. This elicited applause from the crowd and laughter from AK. He explained that he whittled his list down to two items, his daughter and getting out of his own head, and ultimately chose getting out of his own head as his one item. He felt that without that focus, he wouldn’t be able to be the best father he could be to his daughter.
Finding the focus for ourselves is a key component of growth. That focus will change as we do and acknowledging that inevitable and wonderful change begins with honesty.
Host Thank You’s:
Every month, our goal at CMBOS is to design experiences that inspire, delight, and create opportunities for our community to connect with one another in an authentic way.
This month was no exception. In addition to a bountiful breakfast spread and goodie bar, we had The Danger Booth provide head shots as well as silly group shots, Blick Art Materials set up a mask making demo, Printi USA printed our fun name tags and signs designed by our very own Anna S, we featured a Collaboration Station, had Charlestown AV live-stream and document the event via Facebook, and last but not least, a very engaging and intense guest speaker, AK Ikwuakor on Finding Your Why.
If you haven’t already had a chance to thank our sponsors and partners, please do! They make this all possible with generous funding, discounts, donations, and man power. We love you, sponsors/partners - thanks for always looking to take things to the next level on this wonderful journey with our fabulous community of creatives
And a big thank you to our amazing core team and event day volunteers for all of your hard work and selflessness.
Big Hugs and High Fives,
Written by: Steve Molter
September’s theme was Chaos, and boy did the Universe deliver.
Pouring rain greeted the monthly CreativeMornings folks with a crush of precipitation. My thought as I arrived (soaking wet due to my disintegrating umbrella shielding me from its last drops) was that the rain might impede some folks from joining us at LogMeIn’s super awesome venue. I mean, who really wants to trudge through downpours?
A lot of people apparently. The rain stopped no one. Including our guests Janos “The Arcitype” Fulop and Jonathan Ulman who are both highly accomplished Boston-based musicians and genuinely kind-hearted gentlemen. Each is up for Boston Music Awards this year, and both are back-to-back Boston Music Awards recipients 2016-17.
Our host, Sophia Moon, asked deep and thoughtful questions of Janos and Jonathan for close to 45 engaging minutes. The producer and drummer, respectively, regaled the audience with stories and thoughts about how they found their way to music, how chaos and adversity are unavoidable, and how good you are at your craft is only 5% of why people will hire you.
Janos shared: “Chaos is unpredictable. It can change at any point. Embrace the chaos because they are potential opportunities.” Opportunities in the chaos are what led Janos to understand his capabilities and consistently seek out others whose skills complement his own. Which led him to form a friendship and musical partnership with Jonathan who added, “If you lose sight of the fun and love of what you do, what are you doing? It’s all chaos in the beginning, but there are areas for control in the process.”
These two guys represent very clearly the flexibility, openness, and mindfulness that makes our CreativeMornings community so powerful. There is no one answer, there is no one way. There are infinite iterations of creativity and its effect on the world.
Thank You Notes: Sponsors and partners help us bring amazing experiences to our community for free… fuel the engine of generosity with gratitude. It’s never too late to say “thank you.”
LogMeIn - thank you for being a splendid host for our events this quarter and keeping us powered with caffeine in the mornings. ☕️ To the amazing facilities, barista, and planning team at LogMeIn - THANK YOU SO MUCH!
EVENT PARTNERS, thanks for helping us create amazing experiences with the products and services you provide!
The Danger Booth - Find your photos below! :)
Printi USA - fun name tags and signage
Blick Art Materials - cool art and craft experiences
AUG | COMMUNITY
by Sophia Moon
Last month’s event was so inspiring. In the short allotted time, the panelists (Mickey Cockrell, Executive Director of Catie’s Closet; Chuck Leddy, B2B Storyteller; and Paula Garcia, Global Society Program & Partnership Manager at Wolters Kluwer) really brought home some invaluable points about building and being a part of a community. Some points that really resonated with me personally were:
Stay informed. You can’t care about what you don’t know.
Find a cause that is near and dear to you and get involved in a way that is meaningful for you.
Say hello. Be authentic.
Pay it forward. Don’t expect anything in return.
Care about the person next to you. Be compassionate - everyone is going through something.
As folks walked in, we asked the icebreaker question, “Why do we gather?” We got answers that ranged from “bacon” and “coffee” to “making new friends” and “to build a tribe.” We want to challenge you all to continue thinking about it… you can be sure that we, the CMBOS team, think about it all the time.
What is the true reason we get out of bed earlier and make our way to a CreativeMornings event?
Is CreativeMornings truly a community or are we simply a fun networking event?
Are we here for the free donuts, bacon, and coffee? Or, are we here to fulfill a deep and innate longing for connection?
What are we each doing to build CMBOS into a stronger, kinder, warmer, and more connected community?
We did something new at the last event - we abridged the “thank you” section but the love and gratitude are no less felt. So, allow me to gush for a little bit about our CMBOS community of volunteers, sponsors, and partners who make it all happen.
Special thanks to LogMeIn for being such wonderful hosts for Q3 (we’re looking forward to our last event with them on September 28). A special shoutout to Liz, Katelyn, Jeremy, and Alina (COFFEE MASTER) for helping our team make everything come together.
This month, we were grateful to have our sponsors, Catch and tonneson + co for arrive early and helping us set up the breakfast and welcome you beautiful people on your way in. Thanks to Printi for bringing our cute coffee cup name tag ideas to life.
In the spirit of community and breaking bread together, we had a special breakfast guest, Sam Cohen of The SABABA Kitchen with her delicious pull apart Babkas. We enjoyed tasty honeybars from honeygrow; a bacon bar and bacon hushpuppies from The Bacon Truck; refreshing Hubert’s Lemonade; and Skinny Pop for an afternoon snack. Yum Yum. Good food is, after all, one of the most compelling reasons for people to gather, right?
As always, we had The Danger Booth at our event with their magic box that makes it easy to selfie #IWOKEUPLIKETHIS. We had our newest sponsor, Charlestown AV join our awesome team of Event Day Volunteers and core team members that make everything work behind the scenes. Photo credits: Kim Maroon
A big thanks to you all… couldn’t do it without you! <3
JULY | INTENTION
by Steve Molter
I intended to get a good night’s sleep before CreativeMornings/Boston’s July event. That didn’t exactly pan out though. I was tossing and turning from 2 a.m. until 5 a.m., never fully asleep and barely awake. I just couldn’t get comfortable or find my sleep-groove. I was unable to manifest that very pure intention of a good night’s sleep into an actual good night’s sleep. Weak sauce.
But I made it bright and early to what was an unsurprisingly lovely CMBOS event. As I descended the three-story staircase into LogMeIn’s huge event space, it was filled with buzzing conversation and the fresh aroma of coffee, fruit cups, donuts, and bacon. Oh, yes, there was bacon. That’s how we roll.
We had a ton of fun stuff going on: The artists who took part in the #100Days art challenge displayed their dynamic work, we served donuts and bacon along alongside Hubert’s lemonade and fruit cups from Honeygrow, we sneakily attached some free goodies to the bottoms of a handful of seats in the audience, and most importantly we had a deeply personal talk from Erin Pearson, Manager of Product at LogMeIn.
Erin spoke at length about her struggle to create space for herself when she and her partner decided to move the middle-of-nowhere Canada. She ended her talk by asking the audience: How are you creating space for others in this community? A poignant question for us to ponder for sure as we move into August’s CreativeMornings theme of Community.
Name tags. Yarn. Markers. Glitter. Stickers. Scrabble pieces.
Individually, these things are just things. They’re pretty typical. But when you put all these things on a table and tell more than 150 creatives to “make a name tag,” you get something atypical.
Something atypical took place on June 22nd at Arnold Worldwide. And the CreativeMornings/Boston community created it. No, it wasn’t just the name tags. It was the energy and spirit of a group of creative people thinking about, discussing, and using Craft.
Guest speaker Wade Devers (ECD/Managing Partner with Arnold Worldwide) was thoughtful, hilarious, and genuine as he spoke about doing something familiar with the unfamiliar and how difficult great craft can be.
Wade showed a clip from a Jack Daniels commercial he created that talked about how a town isn’t the buildings, but a town is the people. Watching this clip made me realize that CreativeMornings/Boston isn’t the name tags, or the yarn, or the glitter, or the beautiful spaces we gather in on a monthly basis.
CreativeMornings/Boston is you.
Hola CMBOS Friends! Sophia Moon, here! 🙂 Welcome to #100DaysofCMBOS, which will coincide with #The100DayProject, a free global art project starting on Tuesday, April 3rd. This global event is in its fifth year, co-facilitated by Elle Luna and Lindsay Jean Thomson. Anyone can start a 100 Day project at any time, but there’s something magical about being a part of a global movement with people from all over the world committing to the same 100 days of doing a small creative action.
You can watch a Live Q&A Session with the global co-hosts to learn more about the project and how to select the right project for you. The co-facilitators encourage smaller, local groups to come together and support each other in this project and I couldn’t contain my excitement at the thought of sharing this experience with our amazing community of creatives right here in Boston. So, let’s do this! Are you in?!?!
Here’s how you can get started:
Sign up for the weekly newsletter h2 from Elle and Lindsay.
Follow the global facilitators @elleluna and @lindsayjeanthomson as well as @creativemornings.boston and I’ll be our #100DaysofCMBOS facilitator, so feel free to follow/tag me in your projects as well @iamsophiamoon. I can’t wait to see what you do!
Choose your 100 Day action – You’ll do this action every day for 100 days, posting each instance of 100 on your Instagram account. Keep the action simple and manageable. For inspiration, browse #The100DayProject.
Announce your 100 Day Project – Tag your Instagram with #The100DayProject as well as #100DaysofCMBOS and add your own unique project hashtag (so that all of your posts will sit nicely together). Include both hashtags on every post!
Start April 3rd – Create and post every day until July 11th. It’s okay if you miss a day! Keep going. Reading this after April 3rd? Any day is a good day to start #The100DayProject!
We will plan fun and interesting ways to connect with fellow 100Day’ers in the CMBoston community so stay tuned. Get creative. Let’s have fun and support each other! Questions? Feel free to Email me.
The theme for this month is…Curiosity!
Looking for your headshots? Click here, download, share, and like!
“How we communicate with different people with different abilities” LIVE talk with @tfergusonsauder (check out the live stream on our Facebook feed https://m.facebook.com/creativemorningsboston/ )
Today is Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, a holiday originating from the Toltec people of Mexico. While it has become trendy (albeit problematic) to dress as a sugar skull for Halloween, there’s more to this holiday. It is traditionally about celebrating the dead. It also falls on the same day as All Souls Day in Catholicism. How has this cultural tradition influenced your designs? Check out this link for more inspiration. And the video for what the holiday means for teens currently in prison.