Late in 2018, my daughter texted me to let me know about a special deal on Comic Con weekend tickets. I’ve never attended Comic Con, though the idea of them intrigued me. I didn’t know what to expect, but I did know that there were a few panels of celebrities I couldn’t pass up. Namely, the writer and stars of the series Outlander. So we decided to buy our tickets and head to New Orleans for a weekend of games, books, superheroes and Anime.
What I didn’t realize was that I would learn quite a lot from this weekend of panels on a variety of topics. For instance, I attended:
How To Create a YouTube Channel
Nerdy Lady Entrepreneurs
How To Make A Nerdy Living
What was clear to me was the intentional message that you can create a following (or Fandom) around anything you love. If it feels authentic to you, talk about it. Wear it. Share it. Create a panel around it.
And isn’t that what Entrepreneurs are trying to do every day? So..
Lesson One: If you create a pack of raving fans that will tell everyone they meet about what you do, you’ll no doubt experience steady growth.
Lesson Two: Comic Con taught me is to be true to yourself. The Cosplay game – nothing like it! And, there was a lot of talk about being nerdy and unique. The consistent messaging was “You are welcome here, no matter how you’re dressed or how different you might be. There’s no sense in trying to step outside of your essence and try to do something that feels hard or too scary. While Entrepreneurism isn’t for the faint of heart, it truly makes sense to do something that lights you up and connects to your core essential self. As one of my favorite quotes by Howard Thurman always reminds me:
Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.
Lesson Three: So many business owners were represented at vendor tables and panel discussions. It was dizzying and overwhelming at times, but definitely inspiring. They knew where the customers would be and they met them there. And everyone was energized by the field – the exchange of supply and demand.
Finally, Comic Con taught me the value in connecting with your tribe. While there were literally thousands of people in the convention center, there were no fights or even harsh words that I could hear. Like-mindedness can create light heartedness! It was crowded and sometimes the lines were long and the available seats were few and far between, but honest and polite people raised their game and made it a family friendly and personable event. As Entrepreneurs, it is when we connect with others that fit like a glove, we are surrounded by support and a sense of belonging. This goes a long way to keeping us from running out the door and giving up.
I absolutely plan to return to this Comic Con in 2020. It will be interesting to me to see how I feel the second time around. But I am truly thinking about these lessons as I take some steps in a brave new direction this year.
Sometimes the learning comes from the most unexpected places.