#FinCon16

I know I’m totally late on writing about the awesomeness of FinCon but I usually run late in life. So, this just keeps everything in line, right? 😉

For those who may not know what FinCon is, it is the premier personal finance blogging conference. Since there is so much digital media, blogging has become a new way for writers to reach an even more vast audience. I love blogging because I find it can reach a wider audience than traditional media and many media outlets have taken notice of this. Companies such as Business Insider and USA Today have now established blogs on their sites they outsource to writers who started their writing careers by starting blogs such as this one.

While FinCon technically started on Wednesday ( even earlier if you participated in DigiCoLab or the XY Planning Network), I flew in late Thursday and met my BF and friend at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina located directly on Harbor Island. Along with beautiful views, it was amazing to wake up next to the water everyday and hang out while catching up with friends I only get to routinely see once a year. ( side note: I met BF at this conference years ago so we work along side each other at one of the premier events!)

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BF and I at the closing party!

 

Thursday night was spent catching up at the Trade King Kick Off Party held at the Coasterra restaurant about a mile from our hotel. Friday was a bit busier as I had meetings in the morning but I left the hotel to enjoy a nice gluten free lunch with my blogging bestie Jana from Jana Says. BF tagged along but then we sent him on his way back so we could have a girls day of fun before a podcast dinner. Speaking of podcasts, we may have a secret one in the works and I’ll have to keep you informed as things are planned.

Jana and Athena's Day Of Fun!

Jana and Athena’s Day Of Fun!

Saturday was quite busy, as it was the last day of FinCon, but I crammed in as much as possible. I was on a guest on a podcast again this year, attended a session on traditional vs. self publishing, attended the Plutus Awards run though, hosted the Plutus Awards happy hour and live tweeted the Plutus Awards before the FinCon after party. The Plutus Awards is an exclusive awards ceremony where winners are chosen by their peers, all in personal finance. This is my fourth year helping with the Plutus Awards, which I actually do year round.

The Plutus Awards!

The Plutus Awards!

I have to say, this was probably my best FinCon yet and so far, I’ve been to all but one of them, with it being in it’s sixth year. While New Orleans was my favorite location, San Diego is definitely a close runner up. I’ll have more tips this week for attending a conference but I did want to say a few of my takeaways here:

Focus on relationship building. 

You never know who you are going to meet in your life, especially at conferences. I know plenty of people who have attended this conference along with others and now work full time for people they met while there. Along with working for others, some have met their partners ( I’m not the only FinCon couple!). So put down the phones and make some in real life connections while you can.

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BF and I hunting for dolphins!

What can you provide for others? It’s not the other way around.  

A lot of people like to say you are the average of the five people who spend the most time with and like to use this as a way to say you need more established friends. I don’t know if this is true but I do know the more friends I make in my life, the more inspired I am to be a better version of myself. But, asking what other people can provide you, such as a network or earning potential, is not a great way to make a new friend. I suggest working on yourself and being the example of a person who want to actually be around.

Be you. In a big sea, you are the only starfish! 

Sometimes blogging seems hard. We are all competing for the same clients writing about the same thing. *yawn* I totally get it but don’t let this deter you. You and I are both different people with different audiences speaking differently and using different examples with a common goal of educated others. There is only one you and you can shine no matter what if you just put your heart into it!

Don’t be afraid to try new things!

Honestly, I am probably the most scattered blogger on Earth. I come up with great ideas and then promptly forget them. I don’t spend time on what I need to and then feel bad afterwards. But, I realized a lot of it has to do with the fact I get bored and need to shake up my blogging routine, along with mediums I experiment with. Who says I just have to write? Along with starting a podcast, I’m also going to be looking into video and writing a course. Maybe writing isn’t your speed but talking is. Try new mediums and see what you enjoy! The world needs you!

Did you go to FinCon and have a blast like I did?

 

October Goals

My favorite time of year is here, Halloween!

Along with October hosting my favorite holiday, I also enjoy October because that’s when it finally feels like fall in the Southwest. I can wear pants outside and not die, as well as drive my car without oven mitts. That’s what a cheap cost of living will get you, insane weather.

Along with fun plans such as H coming to visit for a week, an adult puppet play and a taco festival, I also need to travel out of town soon to be there for my second family. My best friend experienced a tragic loss over the weekend so I plan on making arrangements to be out of town later this week or next. Life is so short you guys. Make sure you hug everyone and kiss them and tell them you love them .

  1. Decorate for Halloween/ Fall. While I usually have my house ready to go by August 31st, I’ve just been so exhausted this year with my arthritis and other chronic conditions. I’ve caught up on some rest so I plan on decorating this week/ weekend. I love Halloween!
  2. Eat Paleo 80% of the time. After eating strictly Paleo for three weeks then falling off the wagon, I can now say that I can totally tell the difference IN MY BODY. I’m not as achy or sore, hungry or tired. I lost five lbs without even trying and was still able to have things in moderation or by altering them. Now, I will tell you it’s hard to eat Paleo. While my grocery expenses have happily stayed the same, I am cooking a lot more and have to really think out and prep my days. Can I grab something here? Did I pack snacks? Can I leave early to go to the only coffee shop that offers coconut or almond milk? It’s exhausting and frustrating when recipes don’t come out or I’m tempted to just stop by and buy fast food, my weakness. But, I feel better, so much better, that my cheat day will be Friday and that’s hopefully it.
  3. Map out all expenses for the next three months along with savings goals. I have a lot coming up in the next three months. Not only am I traveling to NYC for work, I’m also going to Texas for Thanksgiving and have Christmas coming up. I need to figure out what my expenses will generally be and also how I can still save. And then, student loans are finally coming due. That’s another total budget buster! So, it’s important to budget and plan as much as possible. As Lauren Greutman said in her book, The Recovering Spender ( which I will have a full review of next week,) you need to stay in your fence. The budget is your fence.
  4. Read 6 books. Still desperately holding out hope for my Goodreads challenge this year.
  5. Get ahead at least one week in all client work. Self explanatory.
  6. Find an additional client. Self explanatory.
  7. Start my blog business plan outline. Now that I’m back from FinCon and have found some motivation, it’s time to sit down and actually do it.

What are everyone else’s October goals?