The Mumsnet #Blogfest16 was an inspiring day. It was also a fun day if you’ve seen my Instagram corner lately. Quite a few posts are on their way, including my #Blogfest16 Style Round-Up and my #Blogfest16 in Pictures (thanks to everyone who let me snap photos of them). One thing I love about blogging is that I get to share bits of inspiration with you. You don’t have to be a blogger to enjoy the posts in my #Blogfest16 series. To kick off, here’s seven inspiring thoughts from the opening talk.
We heard many thoughts on expressing our views and the power of social media. A timely discussion bearing in mind the news this week. Compered by Mumsnet Founder Justine Roberts, the talented panel featured views, debates and laughs from BBC journalist Fifi Glover, comedienne Shappi Khorsandi, Jess Phillips MP and blogger Victoria Smith from Gloss Witch.
- Valuing your voice…Whether you’re bloggers, writers or people expressing your everyday views, your voices are important. You are representing the future. In my eyes, every blog has its own voice. There is always room for one more blog.
- Embracing other people’s perspectives…As Shappi mentioned, it’s not just about sounding your views but also about listening and reading about others. So it’s important to step back and absorb what people are saying. People have different ideologies so it’s important to seek sensible sources of alternative views. From my career experience, listening is an important skill to be mastered. Shappi made me realise that listening is also about understanding as well as hearing others’ opinions. In her day job as a MP, Jess told us how she’d had to learn how to deal with people who she disagrees with (in a nice way!).
- Don’t be a moaner…Jess put it across kindly when she explained that we shouldn’t be moaners as we’ll just end up being white noise. That means our voices won’t be clearly heard but will just be in the background.
- Things get better…After a setback or maybe a decision you’re unhappy with or surprised about, things get better. Jess talked about how sometimes you just need to get on with everyday life. Regardless of what’s going on, the kids still need to be picked up from school and we need to carry on with working week. Victoria reminded us that we need to keep on getting our voices out there.
- Finding a safe place for our views…Justine flagged how Mumsnet works on the principle where as an online community, they defend our right to share our opinions and experiences. People don’t need to agree with each other. It’s a safe place to share our writing. It’s also about promoting a discourse in a civilised fashion.
- Don’t forget the art of letter writing…When the panel talked about the power of social media, Shappi chatted about the importance of letter writing. Letters aren’t just about sharing our feelings. They provide us with a cathartic process of expressing our emotions, even if it’s only going to be read by one person. I totally agree. That’s why I went armed with thank you postcards for blogger friends (Sarah at Mum Muddling Through and Talya at Motherhood The Real Deal – glad you liked the messages!) It was lovely passing their envelopes when we bumped into each other at the start of that day. Long live letter writing…
- Our voices need to be more collective…Jess flagged that we need to make room in the debate for lots of different opinions or voices. Fi added that lots of women or pivotal people have bigger voices. So it’s also about supporting these bigger voices and thanking them for pursuing different causes. I think as bloggers, friends and colleagues we can be really good at backing each other up.
So keep an eye out for my other #Blogfest16 write-ups. They will also be featuring lots of shout-outs to the speakers, experts, bloggers and friends who I hung out with at Kings Place.
OVER TO YOU…So what do you think is important when sharing your views online? What do you like about writing? When was the last time you wrote a letter? Which of the above seven inspiring thoughts do you agree or disagree with? What’s your advice for respecting other people’s opinions? Leave a comment below, I’d love to hear what you think too…
See you around Lucky Things soon x Sunita
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