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bot pic pxThe 2014 World Domination Summit – #WDS2014 – took place in Portland July 11-13 and I was fortunate enough to be there. The event was founded by Chris Guillebeau in 2011.

Over the years I have attended a fairly large number of events – film festivals, markets, retail conferences and personal retreats. In that time, I have found a way to take away something from each one, be it a solid, life-changing idea, cold hard cash for a film, or a new friendship or two. I also learned that something is gained just by attending. So, #WDS2014 was a mixed bag for me and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Over the next few months, I will post more on the event, as I suspect what I experienced there will continue to have an impact on my life and the changes I am making to it.

In this post I want to focus on the one thing I did that had the most immediate and dramatic effect – the UnStuckable Walk meetup, which took place at 8am on Saturday morning, prior to the start of the official events. Chris Wilson and Stephen Warley of @UnStuckable hosted and approximately 25 other attendees indicated they would join in. I arrived at 8 and introduced myself to Stephen as Chris did a quick check around the area to see if anyone else was there. In the end, and as my luck would have it, it was just the three of us, and off we went.

As these walks begin, each person states their name, how they describe themselves and either how they are feeling stuck or what big goal they are working towards. At the end of the walk they commit to a specific action (keep it simple!) to work on over the next month toward their goal.

I stated that I was having trouble even answering the first part. Stephen decided to help me out. He said “Well, back there when we first met you told me what you’ve done in the past, what you’re doing now, but how you’re closing those businesses so it doesn’t really count and what you would really like to do is write. Why is it so dang hard for you to just say ‘I’m a writer?'” A good question, delivered with no judgment ,which hit me like the proverbial ton of bricks.

As the walk continued, we spoke about the challenges we face, the dreams we have and the ways we remain stuck. We acknowledged how very important it is to state one’s intentions out loud and to talk things through with others. The walk ended in front of the Arlene Schnitzer concert hall, where the main events of WDS would take place. The action I committed to was simple: for just that day, when anyone asked me what I did, I would respond “I am a writer.” I had about an 80% success rate with it; but by the end of the day I accepted it as truth. For that was the biggest lesson I learned on our short walk: I have to first believe in myself. Thank you Stephen & Chris!

unstuckable guys

Stephen Warley (L) and Chris Wilson (R) of UnStuckable

The World Domination Summit truly does bring together a remarkable army for good and I highly recommend it for anyone seeking to find a way of doing work that matters – both personally and in the world at large.

In future posts, I’ll talk about @botjoy, @berkun, @zenpencils, the remarkable WDS race and more of what were the highlights of my experience at the summit.

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