Last year a small group of us got to attend the Muse Conference. Lauren and Sally were on a panel, and David, Heather, and I drove down. It was so much more than I expected, and totally reset my vision for 2016. Since Sally was giving her #powersuit talk this year, we decided to make Muse a Oiselle retreat of sorts. It was amazing to have 18 Nest and Store birds together for the whole weekend, for this infusion of ideas and energy. Here are a few takeaways from our team!
JENN HAROWICZ - Graphic Designer:
"Words that really struck me from the conference: Lean into discomfort. Walk alongside. To dance is to pray - to pray is to heal. Self love. No shame. Misperception. You cannot heal what you don't acknowledge. Do it for the love. Get more comfortable with fear and rejection. My shine encourages your shine - your shine encourages my shine. Radical grace. When our heart is broken open, that's when the love will flourish. Be open to the pain around us. Nothing is more powerful than a woman who loves herself. My thighs are no longer for criticism but for marching. Exist in a place of love."
ALISOUNE LEE - Customer Service:
"This weekend was very meaningful for me. Not only did it awaken me to ways I can help women and people in my community; it helped me open my mind to issues and ideas that I was not even aware of. I loved Nikki Myers' talk, and thought that her ideas on addiction and how it affects people apply to everyone in some way. That at the heart of this issue there is a spiritual crisis and I believe that crisis exists at the base of most issues in our society. Not a spiritual crisis in a religious sense but a crisis that shows a misunderstanding of humanity and our interconnectedness. A breakdown of the knowledge that we are all human, are more alike than different and we all need love in some capacity."
KG - E-Comm Operations:
"My highlight was getting to experience such a unique, powerful event with everyone at the Nest!"
CHRISTINE BABCOCK - Haute Volée & Customer Service:
"What stuck out to me the most from the Muse Conference was the importance of respecting others and celebrating what they are doing. These are the points that I will carry with me: People aren't looking for a solution or a hero, they are looking for someone to support them, an ally. You can entertain a thought without agreeing with it. We need to respect people's time, energy, and efforts even if we don't agree. If you see something beautiful or amazing in someone else, say something, even if you don't know them. Sometimes we use our voice by staying silent so that others can use theirs. Just because you may have lived more, doesn't mean you know more."
FEATHER - Volée Team Leader, Brand, Model:
"This was my second Muse Conference. And the women of World Muse did not disappoint. Last year, Nikki Myers left the greatest impression on me…. “Hi, I’m Nikki, I’m a recovering drug addict and alcoholic. I’m a codependent. I’m the survivor of both childhood and adult sexual trauma. I’m a love addict. I’m a recovering compulsive spender. I’m a yoga therapist. I’m a somatic experiencing practitioner.” BOOM. Mind blown. Never had I witnessed someone stand so vulnerably and speak such truth. Integrating all parts of the self without judgment. It was so impactful for me. I spent much of the last year doing work on accepting my whole journey, my whole self. For the entire Nest to see our Muse Nikki, on stage and hear her introduction and story was everything for me. So proud to have her as a part of our team and to have our whole HQ team there to support her."
LAUREN FLESHMAN - Pro and Muse:
"Seeing Sally on stage fully-realizing an idea built over many years, and communicating it to the most energetic Muse audience I've seen in my three years there, was something I won't ever forget! Go Chief!"
ATSUKO TAMURA - President:
"I loved the opening film. How masculine and feminine characteristics and qualities are in each human being, and using feathers to illustrate that idea. The characteristics aren't necessarily "gender specific" even though just the labeling of masculine and feminine in that explanation implies that somewhere down the line, society or tradition has created that separation to make sense of it to organize them. Each of these characteristics is in itself beautiful and necessary to fly, soar, and also to land. And each person is invited, encouraged, and hopefully inspired & motivated to build a healthy sense of self-awareness so that they recognize and own their left and right wing qualities, to be good, do good and feel good for the world around them. Maybe that will increase the amount of peace and joy that seems lacking in the world. Feathers can't fly alone."
BETH MCALPINE - Customer Service:
"My highlight was the common theme "you can't be what you don't see." This message really stuck with me and opened my eyes to the different ways you can help and be an ally. I also really loved the Nuns! During the showing of the trailer for Radical Grace, one of Nuns was quoted as saying "My goal is to love people as unconditionally as possible and show what it means to be loved unconditionally for once in their life". Shocking to think about and a message to emulate."
SALLY BERGESEN - CEO and Founder:
"In terms of being an activist, learning about the difference between being a savior vs. being an ally was really eye opening. In the spirit of all people being equal, and that there are infinite forms of empowerment, the ally - or even accomplice - positioning, felt more authentic and based in true altruism, versus an opportunity for ego."