Inspiration Overload

WDS NotesIf it is possible to Be IN too much, I did it over this past weekend at the second World Domination Summit. If it is possible to use too many superlatives in a post, I shall do so here.

WDS is a gathering of incredible, like-minded individuals in Portland Oregon, organized by Chris Gillebeau and the friendliest Action Team ever. The natural question is who attends WDS and why? In Chris’s words, what unites us is threefold: community, adventure and service.

We are bold enough to ask the questions: how do we lead a remarkable lives in a conventional world? What does that mean and look like to me? How can I support others in their visions?

I would say throughout the weekend, besides just knowing in my gut that WDS was something I must attend, was that I wanted to be just around people that “got it.” I was expending energy engaging and enjoying others, instead of explaining my choices.

There was just a certain level of understanding intrinsic in being part of the tribe.

The leap and the crash

Bungee ViewWhat followed a leap off a bridge with amazing, adventuresome individuals who would become my core group for the rest of the weekend, was two and a half very intense, packed days of conference sessions, meet ups, breakouts, social events and impromptu deep conversations.

Exhilarated and exhausted, I’m craving more of those invigoratingly deep conversations at the same time needing to settle back into myself and recharge.

Like an ADHD kid on Ritalin, I’m so high I have crashed out.

There is, apparently, only so much inspiration one body and mind can handle. My body literally crashed last night, an intended power nap turning into a 12 hour sleep. I think that sum about equals what I got over the rest of the weekend.

All by choice. All good stuff. Yet because of the intensity I’m finding it difficult to turn all of this inspiration into action — as we were and are encouraged to do.

Leaving charged up to do the grand over mindlessly going back to the grind is a sentiment I would otherwise wholeheartedly agree with… if my heart and mind weren’t so damned tired.

I am also already skipping on to the next summit of the STP this coming weekend and the logistical, physical and fiscal details therein. Then I feel the few weeks I have left to get ready for Florence looming grandly on the horizon.

I wanted this post to be my grand plans for the future. Alas, not so much.

Now and Then

WDS Possibility

We all just received an email from Chris again encouraging us to see at take action towards what our lives will look like in a year – when 80% of us signed up to return to WDS. I’ll be wrapping up in Italy next July and I still plunked down money to register for WDS13.

Perhaps it is a good goal to think that I’ll be set to travel back for the Summit and prepare for my next leap beyond. It, again, is a point that I have tossed my anchor out to. Yet I think of reregistering as reactive – still riding the high – then as planned, proactive and realistic.

I know I should be concentrating on the important over the immediate  — planning my route and taking action steps now.

If only we always did what we know we “should” do.

The path between where I vaguely want to be in a year and now is a swirling messy jumble — my vision of the future is like a snow globe that it is churned up and too glittery for me to see clearly through.

I have faith that it will be, just not today.

I’m giving myself another week to let the sparkles settle and then be intentional and self-inspired with my action steps.

Sometimes the greatest gift we can give ourselves is time. For it is what allows us the breathing room to…

Always be IN

Jo Signature



PS – I am absolutely loving Portland. Perhaps my reticence to look towards the future is partly loving being IN where I am now. I do know that if I return to the states in a year it will now be to NYC or PDX.


  1. Ahh you always read my mind and put it down in better words than I could have. 🙂

    I am feeling almost exactly the same way – and I’ve decided to give myself at least a week to regroup before I dive into all the actions I plan to take. It’s so hard not to act immediately, but I think it’s much wiser to let some of these things simmer inside us (just not for too long).

    I want to reiterate that I’m sooo very glad I met you and I’m looking forward to seeing and hearing all about what you accomplish and experience over the next year. I know it will be great, amazing, remarkable things!!

    PS – I slept for almost 12 hours on Monday night going into Tuesday. And damn did I need it! 🙂

    • I’m so glad I’m not alone in the overwhelm — nor the sleeping patterns. I actually put off reading your post because I was sure we would be along similar wavelengths and was afraid you would do it better than I first. 🙂 (readers, please check out Dani’s post on fear:
      Yay conferences for bringing us together and I look forward to many years of inspiration (and beers) with you!

      • It took me until this morning, Sunday to finally get enough sleep to catch back up from last weekend. I have come up with a new hypothesis that “the less sleep you get, the more fun you are having”. Those three days felt like a lifetime but also made me wish it was a week long event of awesomeness.

        On a side note, what’s the chances of finding someone that actually understands what I do for a living AND having that person being in a group of folks that I jump off a bridge with…mind boggling!

        • Indeed! The Universe and Kismet always seem to astound. I’m glad to hear that you have caught up, I think Iam still in that process. I like your hypothesis and that weekend seems to help prove it. I definitely had a metric ton of fun – a week though and I would definitely OD. Maybe if we “dominated” an island somewhere…

  2. Oh, I am totally overwhelmed. It happens so easily when I am surrounded by creative, energetic (yes, even the introverts at WDS were energetic!) types. I think I am also overwhelmed by my internal battle with my cynicism and fear. They are mighty internal barriers to conquer.

    I’ve already decided what I’m doing with my $100 investment we all got at WDS (Hint: I’m investing in a more awesome world But beyond that, I need to let some time pass to allow my ideas percolate.

    For now, I’m in Portland for 24 more hours. Which means I have time for a few more beers!

    • So great Lauren! I love your idea for the $100 investment and wish you and Todd the best in making it happen. I too have decided what to do with mine after being initially quite daunted by the prospect (hint: I’m investing in others too).
      Your internal battles with fear and cynicism are shared – as we learned too at WDS. The work to break outside of ourselves and be vulnerable enough to be open to others and all the energy that entails… well it is a continued practice. It is always helpful to know that we are not alone in the struggle — that is the power of WDS and such gatherings. Thanks for adding your energy and voice to group!
      Have fun with your remaining hours in Portland! It is such a great town.

  3. Joanna! It was so awesome to meet you, and jump off a bridge with you to boot! 😉

    It was fun being part of the “BeeJee crew”, especially since we already started WDS off with a tight knit group of friends. So…I guess I’ll be seeing you next year @ WDS 2013!

    • Jason! You as well. It was always nice to walk into any room and see the smiling face of a BeeJeer. It made the summit smaller and much more manageable — plus we were the rock stars that jumped off a bridge together! I’m so thankful to have met and spent good times with the crew. Hopefully, yes! see you next year!

  4. Hey Joanna – Great to meet you at the jump in Portland! I can’t wait to hear about your adventures in Florence – good luck and keep us updated!

    • You too Aaron! Amazing that we sometimes have to go across the country to meet someone so close to our hometown. I hope the jump and summit were stellar for ya and sounds like you are keeping the community strong here in GA which is so great – I only wish I was going to be around for longer to tap into that more. Cheers to you and look forward to seeing what develops for you!


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