Justice. Equality. Feminism. Human rights.

CreativeMornings Lisbon August event was about these huge and powerful concepts, about a subject that is still actual, unfortunately. The sexual harassment suffered mostly by women in Portugal. It’s present in our society, in our families, through our friends, and most importantly it is still present in our action and words. And this shouldn’t go on.

So, on the last Friday of August, the morning started with another amazing CreativeMornings event hosted by Beta-i with a nice venue, particularly the balcony with a view to the city of Lisbon, and a marvellous breakfast, co-provided by Allways.

We had a full-house and the atmosphere during the breakfast was amazing, everyone chatting with each other, eating something good and drinking the expected morning coffee, so characteristic of CreativeMornings.

To talk about Justice and Equality we had the #NãoéNormal movement, with Ana Esteves and Diogo Faro. They started by presenting this movement, how it started and what it aims to be. Diogo was the one doing this presentation with his sense of humour reflected in his speaking as he is a known Portuguese comedian. First, as a man, Diogo never truly thought about how it is to be a woman at school, at work, at public transportations… How women can suffer from being observed, some comments from their bosses or just some kind of pick up line in the street that is everything but that… At some point, some months ago, he decided to do some humoristic work about these types of sexual behaviours of minor importnace and how they are so frequent within our society. Through his social media, Diogo asked women to share some story they have lived concerning this subject. He wasn’t expecting more than 30 testimonials… But he got more than 200…! He continued to receive messages sharing stories of sexual harassments and that made him understand that something had to be done, something that overcame his initial idea, that something must change. This is not normal!

So, he met with some friends, Ana included, and they created #NãoéNormal, a movement to promote gender equality and to deconstruct acts of sexism that are too much rooted in our society. This has been quite a process for Ana, Diogo and the other co-founders as they understood and gained conscience that each one of them is also part of the problem. Não é Normal is not particularly targeted for rapists, it is targeted for the “normal people”, it aims to help enculturate new and small daily behaviours that could change society mindset. What this movement does, as a call for action, is sharing ideas through social media and going to schools to promote debates about this among the youngsters. Essentially it is about getting conscious about these issues, make everyone think about them and understand how each one of us is part of the problem. And then, they hope, get to change something: some acts, some sayings, some prejudices.

It starts with small things… Society gained ideas that are spreading this issue, such as “you’re a lady, you must know how to cook” or “bad driver? Must be a women” … These ideas that grow with us… And must definitely change!

After Diogo presentation, Ana tried to make some debate, promoting audience questions. For her, this is a matter to discuss, to make everyone think about it. That is the only way to make a change. There were a lot of questions and shares, which truly made everyone understand how real it is, how this is something that everyone should think and care about.

This month theme was serious and somehow tough. CreativeMornings event was a place for shares, for thinking, for understanding the urgent need of justice and gender equality. August event was a time for networking, as always, for bonding and for social impact discussions. Always full of creative minds and inspiring people, in an innovative and inspirational place as Beta-i, where startups are accelerated and launched to create impact. We couldn’t think of a better way to end August month as with this inspiring, touching and reflective event!

Justice is about true equality, when man and women are treated as equals, having the same rights. It’s about knowing that whatever you say can, and most certainly will, affect the other person and will enter their own individual space. We should all think about this and gain consciousness that through our lives we had situations when we felt as victims and other where somehow, we contributed to these minor sexual behaviours. We should all care. Something must change. This is not normal.


Text by Ana Sousa

Photos by  Eglė Duleckytė and  Maria Narciso

CreativeMornings Lisbon last event, in July, took place in Selina Secret Garden Lisboa, a recent place in our amazing city. It was the first time that our event was hosted in this venue and what an experience it was! As you enter Selina Secret Garden you immediately feel inspired and belonging, it is somehow familiar, creative, artistic and fulfilling all at the same time. It is visible how every detail counts in Selina’s, which makes this place so magical. You also get the feeling that you are entering some not-that-big place but when you start going around you feel surprised as in every corner a new space comes in front of you.

Selina has a hostel, with some deluxe suites, a pool, a restaurant, a co-working space and an amazing rooftop, full of beautiful flowers. Even the shared kitchen is amazingly decorated and immediately makes you want to kook something, just to immerse in that space. The outside space is something that also contributes for this sense of magical place. A lot of art works fill the walls, many paintings with the finishing touch of flowers and plants that fulfil every place and make you feel like you’re not in the middle of the city, but you are close to nature. Also, the pool is an attraction at Selina’s, as it is the perfect in-between-buildings pool that totally matches its surroundings.

The co-working place has hot and permanent desks and was full in the day of CreativeMornings event. It maintains the creative and naturally inspiring décor of the rest of the place, with a professional and working touch that makes anyone want to join with their laptop. You have chairs, sofas, outside chairs and benches… the sky is the limit to co-work there.

For CreativeMornings Lisbon July event Selena was the perfect match, to talk about Ends in a never-ending place, with so much to discover. It definitely is a creative place to discover in Lisbon, to work, to have some dinner with friends or even to have some good night sleep.

As a final secret thing about Selena, a rooftop bar is soon to be opened, which seems like the perfect excuse to return to this amazing and inspiring place. Wanna come?


Text by Ana Sousa 

Photos by Irina Konova

CreativeMornings Lisbon is about community. We believe that speakers are equally important as volunteers, audience and venue.

Today we are introducing you one of our community members. Beatriz Canas Mendes, a constant presence on our events since February.

Beatriz Canas Mendes came for the first time to a CreativeMornings Lisbon event in February. She decided to come once sge saw we were having  Rita da Nova as our February speaker. Since then, she never missed a single event. Every month you can see Beatriz seating on a front row, taking notes or talking with people with an enthusiasm that made us want to get to know her.

Beatriz is a Portuguese teacher for foreign people. She does private classes and organizes workshops for groups. Creativity is an important skill on her job, as she is always looking for new ways to reach her students goals and ways to make it easier for them to understand and learn such a complex language as Portuguese.

Author of the blog “Procrastinar também é viver”, lately, she was feeling the need of connection. Being a very social person, Beatriz was finding harder to connect with like-minded people. She was even feeling disappointed as the post-graduation she is doing did not meet her expectations in that field. That was what kept her coming every month. At CreativeMornings, or so she tells, she realized this lack of connections was not a personal issue but rather a matter of looking for it at the right place. For her, CreativeMornings represents a safe place to talk to others, exchange ideas and learn new things.

Outside CreativeMornings, Beatriz is an only child, grandchild and niece. One of a kind, we would say.

For breakfast she normally eats “Nestum com Bolacha Maria” or toast with milk shakes.

We couldn’t be more thrilled to learn the impact CreativeMornings Lisbon can have on people’s lives. Beatriz, Thanks for keeping coming and make our community such a special one.


Text written by Elisa Baltazar

Photos by Irina Koronova

The end. It all starts with ends. Last Friday started with an amazing End, at least for those who were at Selena Secret Garden Lisbon that hosted Creative Mornings Lisbon July event about End. With the proper and inspiring environment, an end is most certainly a new beginning. And that is what Nelson Nunes has done in this Friday morning, surrounded by the beautiful and fulfilling Selina Secret Garden outside space. He shared with us his view and his experiences with end(s).

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First, about the place, Selena Secret Garden Lisbon is, as I may describe, a wanna-be-it-all place. It’s an hostel, an hotel, a restaurant, a pool, a co-working space, a soon-to-be rooftop bar… The list of facilities could continue, but Selena Secret Garden Lisbon is much more than those. It’s an art exhibition, a hangout place, a brunch place, an event venue… It’s inspiring, it’s cool and has secrets in each corner. Everything is made with such detail that you really feel like you’re entering some magical place. Opened for only 3 months, this place has already hosted dance events, a cooking worshop, bar drinks and other workshops and private events and has received people from all over the world. This month has also received an inspiring and creative event, Creative Mornings Lisbon. And what a morning it was!

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Nelson doesn’t believe in ends or starts, he believes in experiencing. For him it’s what he experiences and his background that has been inspiring him as a writer. He started writing with 19 years old but has started reading with 4, which definitely left an impression on the adult that he became. He has recently published his 5th book, Preciosa, which is about domestic violence seen by a child, truly inspired by what he has lived in his childhood. It is impressive how Nelson talks about this and other dark places where he had already been. Being close to the end is somehow familiar to Nelson. But it is the way he managed these episodes of his life that really made a difference. Was it an end when he pulled back from a balcony? And at the second time he did that? Or was it just a beginning of something else? “We are already dead” he said, “we are just doing some stuff until we get there”.

And great stuff he has been doing, taking advantage of unexpected ends, such as unemployment, for example. If he didn’t get unemployed some years ago, he wouldn’t get addicted to comedy shows and he wouldn’t get interested in the art of comedy and wouldn’t have written his “Com o Humor não Se Brinca” book, with some of the most known Portuguese comedians.

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About his creative writing process, Nelson’s never thinks “I have to start writing this book”, this kind of scheduled pressure doesn’t work for him. He believes that when he starts thinking about some new novel he is already writing it, it is already part of the writing process.

He also has some interesting view about finishing writing a book. Is it the end of it and then it ceases? Wrong! The book is just starting! Because after he finishes writing the book goes to the readers, and that’s when it really starts!

This view of writing, that actually can be about anything else, is really positive and inspiring as it removes the pressure of “the process” to get there, and you can lightly enjoy the journey. And quoting Nelson: “at the end of the day just think: Did you do what you wanted to do with this day?”. And at the end that’s what it really matters.

Nelson is not only a writer but a story teller, in the true sense of the word. The audience was fully engaged with how he embraced end(s) and how he empathizes with his experiences. He admits to be a true fan of failures, they are cool as they open a lot of new opportunities, some not even imagined in the past. So, end is not really the end of something, it is just a fluid passage through life experiences.

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There couldn’t be a better place for Nelson to share some sensitive and kind of ending experiences with us as Selina Secret Garden. The area for the event is really cosy, familiar and somehow intimate. And that made it all! Selina Secret Garden is a never-ending place. Perfect match for this month End theme. 

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The end.

Or is it just a beginning of something else?…


Text by Ana Sousa 

Photos by Irina Konova

I’m Ana, I’m from Lisbon and I’m currently doing a PhD in Biomedical Engineering. This could be a CV introduction… But it does not truly describe me… I work with youth groups in a catholic context, I’ve been 1 month doing a mission in Mozambique in 2017, I’ve done volunteering with the homeless and more recently with the elderly, visiting them in their houses. I love to work with teenagers and youth groups and to share my life experience with them. I love to travel, to read, to sleep… I have latin dances classes. I’m passionate about people and how we can grow with each other, and I’ve started working as a volunteer at Creative Mornings Lisbon in January. It has been 6 months of this incredible adventure! I’ve gone from “surreal” to “wonder” in a few  months and it has been quiet a journey!

First, I need to share how I got there, to CM events. I started attending CM Lx in September 2018 through my friend Lucia who was a volunteer at the time. She always said amazing things about the event, about how inspiring and happy she got there in each month. So, moved by her sharing and by the need to attend some seminars for my PhD, I started coming to CM Lx. I must thank my friend Lucia for sharing this amazing gift with me. I loved the event, the talk, the breakfast… but most of all I loved the relaxed and yet inspiring environment, where everyone belongs. That month’s theme was Chaos and I felt so empathized by the speaker and his life… My life was very chaotic at the time… I felt I had no direction… So incredibly (and completely true) Creative Mornings did change the things! I enjoyed being there, it made me feel good, belonging and it made me re-think my projects and my life. And the most important: it helped me gaining motivation, particularly for my PhD project. I attended all the events after that and then suddenly I saw on Instagram that they were looking for volunteers… I felt tempted to immediately answer but then I heard all those little voices in my head saying “can you manage to do it?”, “do you have the time?”, “you have been crying to have some available time and going to start another thing in your life?!”… well,  but as I was already living in chaos and I already attended the event each month, it was just adding some extra work to it during the event. So, after some days I sent an e-mail saying that I would like to be a volunteer in the event, I wanted to be part of it… And here I am, a volunteer for 6 months.


I’m usually responsible for check-in, so I see and talk to everyone when they arrive. I’m the first morning face each attendee sees. And I like that. I also help packing up everything when it ends and I talk to volunteers, attendees and the speaker after the talk… I like to casually talk, to network, but with no pretensions of this or that. Just for the pleasure of meeting new people and to chat a little bit about the theme, about the speaker, about how inspired we all feel this Friday of the month… For me Creative Mornings Friday is with no doubt the best Friday of the month!

I could continue saying amazing things about the event, or the themes, or my tasks, or… but I would like just to share how fortunate I am for having this project in my life, for the team where I belong and for this creative and inspiring environment, where I feel completely integrated even with all my geekness and my insecurities.

Thanks Creative Mornings, you motivate and inspire me to continue pursuing my dreams and projects each month! Let’s keep this thing up mate!

Text written by Ana Isabel Sousa

Photos taken by Irina Konova and Tarlis Schneider from Acurácia Fotojornalismo.

The theme for our event this month is WONDER and although there can be many different interpretations of the word, I would like to stick to one: ‘a feeling of amazement and admiration, caused by something beautiful, remarkable, or unfamiliar’.

When was the last time you felt wonder about something? Even if one has already landed the unicorns of the perfect job, work-life balance or is a true mindfulness guru, grasping a moment of wonder in the middle of our city-based, industrialised lives have become more uncommon than we like to admit. In fact, what makes the feeling itself into a true wonder is the rarity of sharing that ‘wow’ moment with someone else.

It is that feeling of wonder that pushed me to volunteer for the CreativeMornings Lisbon team a little over a year ago and if you have already attended our event, you must have heard Elisa explain, that since Tina Roth-Eisenberg started it 11 years ago, it has grown to more than 200 chapters all over the world. What you may not know is that every once in a while this international community of volunteers comes together in a three-day event packed with joy, learning, face-to-face connections, hugs, and high-fives.

For me, it all started with Nadine’s visit to our Lisbon event in March (those who were there should remember her group-selfie skills). The longtime Cologne host was the one who motivated me to join the meetup with her contagious enthusiasm. It did not take much convincing to be fair and after a couple of glasses of wine in Park bar, I was sold.  

Set in the Scottish capital and countryside, the “wee” (tiny in Scottish) summit 2019, was to become my very first but surely not the last. The Edinburgh chapter team took on the role of the organiser and united a semi-European semi-global crowd of spectacular individuals into what became three days on wonder steroids.

As I left Lisbon at its warmest peak of the year so far, I could not believe my luck walking to the PRESERVE talk by Mary Johnston, in total sunshine. I must admit, at this point, I did not know what to make of the weekend to come since I knew practically no-one. Much like in every other event, it did not take long until that was no longer the case.  After the talk, and while we were still stuffing ourselves with delicious bagels, we debarked into a Constitution Street field-trip hosted by local writer Jemma Neville. Jemma took us on a walk around Leith, the buzzing port district at the north of the city of Edinburgh, while she introduced us to the history and background of her neighbourhood. Walking around the stone-house streets, surrounded by tall trees, little gardens and historical buildings, we were quickly moving past the prosaic ‘what do you do?’ ice-breakers towards more meaningful conversations.

One of the main wonders of this trip is how a group of strangers can overcome the notion of social time when they have something in common that they feel passionate about. In a remarkable energy cloud, we took the bus to Eden Leisure Village, singing songs like schoolkids and eating home-baked cookies by Elise.

Lost in the Scottish countryside with little wooden huts and firepits, we spent the rest of the weekend in what felt like a long-overdue wellness retreat among a family of like-hearted people where it takes zero effort to be yourself. From spontaneously dancing disco tunes to brainstorming, sharing heartbreaks or playing the highland games (some brave souls among us anyway), this weekend had it all.

As an expat, I am perhaps hard-wired for curiosity but the decision to attend the mini-summit of CreativeMornings volunteers in Scotland was by far the most unexpectedly rewarding, wonder-packed weekend of my life. Considering that multiple distractions showed up, none was important enough to keep me from fully emerging in this pool of emotional abundance.

Eventually, there are many reasons people choose to volunteer. Sometimes, it’s because they want to offer help to the people around them, support a cause they believe in, or simply boost their portfolio. But for some people like myself, it is a chance to get involved in what feels like continuous moments of wonder, and everyone is welcome!

My little how-to guide on finding wonder:

  1. Try something outside your regular routine!
    It can be taking a new route to go to work, escaping the Netflix binge routine and walking around your neighbourhood instead, perhaps texting someone you haven’t seen in a while or just enjoying the life around you.
  2. Travel ofter and don’t be afraid to do it alone.
    I know that one is heavy if you haven’t tried it so far, but it might be your closest chance to learn something new about yourself and perhaps make new friends along the way! ( there is usually a CM chapter nearby)
  3. Don’t let little things steal your focus from what is important.
    What we define as little is anything that can be resolved with or without the support of wonderful people you keep around. It is my view that “accidents” come as reminders for us to appreciate how lucky we are and feel grateful for what’s important instead!
  4. Keep the right crowd around. If you are in search of wonderful people then sign up for our next event, we have loads!

Fools look to tomorrow. Wise men use tonight.  - Scottish proverb

Text by Sofia Karakaidou (CreativeMornings)
Photos by Francis Augusto, Ellie Morag and Edith Whitehead

How many lives can you fit into one lifetime?

Let’s say you’re a photographer. Or an athlete. Or a graphic designer. Or a musician.

What about… if you’re all of them?

Sounds surreal, but this is Ricardo Macedo. “I don’t want to be the best, I want to be better than yesterday.” he said, at the Creative Mornings Lisbon event, this January. It certainly put my New Year’s resolutions in check.

As a child, Michael Jordan was his idol. However, he quit basketball to be an engineer. Why, you ask? There was another powerful influence in his life: fear. Fear of the future. Or, as he dearly calls it, “the bastard”. “Everyone was always warning me about the future. The bastard is always there to try to scare you.” he recalls. “You just have to ignore it. Most of the time.”

And so he did. He became a graphic designer at IADE, working during the day and studying during the night. Moving to Barcelona, “I had a dream job.” he says. “I started a band that lasted for 10 years. And an illustration company. So I thought that was it. A year later, I started being a teacher at ELISAVA.”, a renowned design school.

My weekends were filled with music, alcohol and party, as a reward for my hard work.” he says. I sense that the audience can relate to that, noticing some knowing smiles and nervous laughter. “My dream job was not that dreamy anymore.” A panic attack was the warning sign. “I felt I was going to die”, he says, opening up about his depression, Xanax, drugs and considering suicide. “In that moment, it made sense.”, Ricardo shares.

Back in Portugal, he realised he had been “worrying about the future, and sad about the past”. Ricardo is a one-man show and a man-of-many-talents. Thus, he decided to take up whatever he wanted, in the moment. “I started to choose my customers very wisely, even if I was short in cash. And I never had a lot of cash. I wanted people who believe in me, and in my portfolio. I did illustrations, I worked for magazines, I did corporate identities and logotypes.”

His latest project was built with his own hands. At Las Vegan, he re-created a traditional portuguese tavern, but focused on sustainability and plant-based food. I had dinner at Las Vegan the evening before his talk, and now it all came together, in terms of what Ricardo is and does. It is Ricardo in a nutshell: dynamic, intimate, exciting and authentic. “Variety is the spice of life”, he concludes.

 

Text by Carolina Mesquita (CreativeMornings Writer)

Photos by Acurácia Fotojornalismo

When I decided to get a subscription of Croissant it was solely for the fact that I still can’t afford to have a full-time contract with a co-working space. I got into this freelancing life recently, I have a few clients, but my income still doesn’t allow me that expense (or demands that amount of time).

With my 7 days free trial, I decided to try more than one of the 18 places available in Lisbon just to see which one would suit me better.

I had no idea a whole new world would open in front of my eyes.

The thing is, I didn’t realize immediately that I don’t have to choose only one or that my needs might change. That’s the beauty of Croissant. You immediately gain access to the 18 different places available in Lisbon. And they are all different. I felt like the sky is the limit.

I tried a few ones in Lisbon and here is my take out so far.

My first criteria to choose where to go started by being its location or how easy it would be for me to get there, which means their closeness to metro stations. Eventually, to some of them, I ended up returning for different reasons.

In all of them, I checked in with the app and got a friendly quick tour of the space. I was very well received and in no moment felt treated differently from their full-time visitors.  

So, they were all very similar in many ways. Great Wi-Fi, great desks/tables to work, nice people receiving me.

The amenities and the ambience were what I found very different from place to place. In some places coffee is free and you even get small snacks and fruit to nibble on. In others, coffee was still very affordable. One of the places I visited was very very quiet. People would move around but no sound was heard. If you coughed, it would go unnoticed. This is now my go to place when I need to really concentrate. On the other hand, when I need a boost of a creativity, I prefer the louder place.

All the places had phone boots, but in some co-working spaces, those were more often occupied then others, so when I know I’m having an important call, I take that in consideration when choosing where to be.

Finally, some are dog friendly and those are my favorite ones as I love taking my dog around instead of leaving her home alone or just to pet other people’s dogs on my breaks.

Croissant is offering all CreativeMornings members  a 7-day free trial and a 15 euro discount off your first month. Give it a try and let us know how was your experience. What do you value in a co-working space.

Post written by Elisa Baltazar in collaboration with Croissant.

Photo by Roman Bozhko on Unsplash

Everyone is creative. Everyone is welcome.

We can organize our monthly lecture for the creative community in Lisbon thanks to the work of volunteers. CreativeMornings Lisbon invites the creative community in Lisbon to contribute with their time and expertise to help develop and grow further our events.

What are we looking for?

There is a lot going on behind the scenes. On the days of the event we wake up really early to have everything set up at 8.30 when people start arriving. Before that we have already shared the info regarding the event in many social platforms and even before that we try to share info that we believe are relevant to the creative community in Lisbon.

During the event, we take photos, make stories on social media, make a video, we have a morning match board and, most of all, we want to help people to feel connected and inspired.

This means we need people help from videographers, social media managers, illustrators, hands on the event or any creative person who wants to be a part of this project.

How much time will take me?

People volunteer with their time and expertise, so anyone can donate of much time as they can or want. All we ask if for people to commit with their offer or let us know in a timely matter if for some reason that is temporarily or no longer possible, so all the other volunteers can organize ourselves. Bare in mind that some tasks might take longer than others. For example, a photographer needs time to edit their photos or a videographer need time to edit image and sound.

Do I need to have previous experience?

In CreativeMornings Lisbon we believe in passion, we believe in learning and, most of all, we believe everyone is creative. Many of our volunteers are not professional in the area they want to help. From photographers, videographers, social media managers, we have people than more than anything want to get experience, portfolio, to learn and to be a part of it. If you are passionate about something different from your professional life, this is the place to be.

What can I expect?

Volunteers donate their time and expertise to CreativeMornings Lisbon. CreativeMornings is a free event that wants to welcome everyone by providing a free monthly event. This means that no volunteer should expect any financial compensation for their participation.

We cannot also guarantee any professional outcome from your participation. Unfortunately, we have no control regarding who sees your work and how is it perceived. What we can guarantee is to always credit your work, to give it exposure on our social media platforms, to mention you on our talk intro from time to time and to interview you for our blog/social media.

CreativeMornings Lisbon is, essentially, a great way to create portfolio, to learn, to develop, benefit from the value of voluntary and community service and to develop personal growth and value from the giving of their time and expertise

To know more or to apply as a volunteer contact us at lisbon@creativemornings.com.

 This article features photos by Nimagens, and by Acurácia Fotojornalismo .

The beginning

People often ask me how did this happen, how did I become CreativeMornings Lisbon host.

It was by chance. Pure chance, as so many other good things happen in life.

My first contact with CreativeMornings Lisbon was as an attendee. I learn about it at Meetup and immediately fell in love.

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One day I saw a Facebook post asking for a volunteer for the next day event and since I was already going anyway, I offered myself. I thought it would be really cool to be a part of it. The rest is history. A few months later, the previous host, Victoria Ivanova, told me she was stepping down from her role and I decided to apply for the role. It was not the easiest process, but I got it.

The struggles

On the first months, I was terrified. I wasn’t sure if I would get the speakers, the sponsors and, on top of it, the previous team of volunteers all drop out with the change of host. Except for Lucia. You might know her for being the first face you see when getting to the event. She does the check-in and helps organizing all the stuff to be ready when you start coming (Thank you, Lucia!).

Then, we couldn’t find a breakfast sponsor. So, we bought ourselves breakfast with the help of Impossible, another one that stick with us during this transitional period. I was also lucky enough to have Daily Coffee on board and they have been providing the coffee since. Thank you both!

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My first speaker was a close friend who I knew could speak English and had always interesting stories. Only 16 people came. The second speaker was my boyfriend’s boss. 17 people came. And it was actually a shame, as it was one of the best talks we ever had.

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The errors

When people ask me how I do it, there’s only one answer: with errors. At the beginning my sole objective was to make it happen. Venue. Check. Speaker. Check. Communications. Check. And then I would hope for at least one person to show up. I have been a little bit luckier than that.

During the past year I did so many mistakes. From incorrect links on the newsletter or typos on social media to not setting up people’s expectations correctly, whether sponsors or volunteers. It’s not easy to sell something that is not for sale. This is a free small event, we all are volunteers or supporters. The main result is being able to provide a good and inspiring time to a small group of people. It can be very rewarding (and it is) but any other lateral results are not immediate, and this might be frustrating for those investing their time and products. Communication is the key, but it took me a while to learn that.

The lessons

It’s hard to quantify how much I learned the past 12 months.

I learned that if I keep my expectations aligned with the right goal (providing a good time for a small group of people) the more I work, the more it grows. It’s proportional. More work means more audience, more audience means more sponsorships, more sponsorships means a better event. This means I also had to learn to limit myself. Limit the time I want to work on this. If I allow, CreativeMornings can take up all my time. Unfortunately, I do have other things to do.

I learned that word of mouth is still the best marketing campaign. The more I tell my friends about this, the easier it gets to find what I need. The more people enjoy the event, the more they will tell their friends, the bigger my audience gets.

I learned that breaks are essential. We decided to have a break in July to re-think all our strategy and in August we came back stronger than ever and we saw an immediate boost on the event. We reached a record on our numbers and kept surpassing ourselves every month since then.

I learned that I need to be able to delegate even if I feel that there are things that I still need to do myself. It’s a hard balance. I learned that our moto is true, everyone is creative. Everyone I talked with, from volunteers to members of the audience, have taught me something. I learned that more than network, more than feeling inspiring, people long for connection and that must be my goal and focus for being successful. From the talks, almost all of them, I learned two very important things:

1st,a lot of things happen by chance. Or so people say. Truth is, almost every speaker talks about how things just happened. But interestingly, all those things happened after they decided what they needed to change. So, do things really happen by chance or is it us who get more sensate to chances once we are aiming for them?

2nd, the most interesting talks had one single thing in common. Passion. It doesn’t matter the topic or how interesting it would be for each individual, the best feedback we get is when we hear people really passionate about what they are talking about.

The future

I believe the big lesson is understanding what people want and what people need. Now that we were able to grow enough to have tickets sold out in two days and to reach a record of 70 people on one single event, we need to focus on maintaining the vibe for people to connect and leave with a smile, inspired and motivated. More than growing we need to keep exploring ideas such as the morning match board that allows people to verbalize what they need or what they are offering on a post-it, we need to keep the good coffee that keeps us all awake at such an early time and we need to keep bringing in people with inspiring stories and ideas to share.

If you have any ideas, feel free to share. We are building a community here.

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Speaking of community I could not finish by thanking everyone that somehow contributed to the events, but I have a special thanks to those who made a big and continuous effort through the year such as Henrique, who helps setting everything up on the day of the event, it’s our Instagram stories guy and does a lot of back office work with sponsors and venues. Nicole. Nicole has been a photographer, a speaker, a designer, a cook, a co-host, and so many other things. She basically has put her work in anything required or that could improve the events. Sofia. Sofia is our community manager, she is great getting people together and has been a huge help with sponsors since she is on board. Tarlis, more than a photographer has been a photo reporter, helping us telling a story through his photos. Jakub is the one who makes our wonderful illustrations to help you remembering to bring your own mug, release your ticket, subscribe our newsletter and so many others. Theo. Theo did the most amazing videos we ever had. He is very talent with transition and capturing the vibe we all feel. I have already talked about Lucia. Lucia is an ideas generator and has that capability of always having a smile really early in then morning. She is the longest volunteer for CreativeMornings Lisbon.

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Happy festive season for everyone.


This article features photos by Nimagens, by Acurácia Fotojornalismo and by Pedro Vilela .

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