World Domination Summit 2014
I had never been to Portland before. I stepped off the plane with my backpack and a plan for adventure. The terminal wasn’t too big and I quickly found myself on the train to the city center. As the train slid down the track toward my goal I couldn’t stop myself from staring out the window and noting the nice looking city that was rolling by. When I’m in a new place, and fumbling my way though the public transportation, I always end up looking like a small town girl on her first train ride. This time though, while soaking in the scenery, I couldn’t stop my foot from bouncing up and down with anticipation.
I was on my way to the World Domination Summit (WDS) and the excitement that it was really almost here started to bubble up inside of me. I learned about the World Domination summit last year through a series of bloggers that I follow. I read a couple of real-time posts as the event was happening and was hooked on the idea. I was so pumped that I tried to get tickets and hop on a plane immediately. Unfortunately, WDS sells out well in advance. So, I put my email address on their info page and waited for my chance at WDS2014 tickets.
What is it all about?
The World Domination Summit is the brainchild of Chris Guillebau. Chris is a NYT bestselling author, has traveled to every country in the world, and is the founder of The Art of Non-Conformity (AONC). Chris founded the WDS in 2011 as a place for remarkable/unconventional people to gather and answer one question, “How do we live a remarkable life in a conventional world?”
I got off the train at Pioneer Square and found myself standing in the middle of over 800 people who had just finished breaking the world record for the longest yoga chain. This was the first major event for the 2014 WDS, and what a way to start! I was swept into a crowed of excited people holding yoga mats and filling the square with an energy I would soon identify as a fundamental part of the awesomeness of WDS. While welcoming party didn’t start for 6 more hours I found myself rushing to check into my hotel and get back out onto the street.
My hotel happened to be next to some of the famous Portland food carts. This was a big bonus for me since I consider myself to be an amateur foodie (who doesn’t these days?). I checked into the hotel then hit the streets as fast as I could. I expected the food to be great, but what I didn’t expect was to immediately make friends with one of the hundreds of people carrying around their yoga mats.
The first thing I learned about WDS is the attendees are friendly and passionate. While ordering food I struck up a conversation with Sheila who had traveled from Chicago to attend WDS. Like me, this was her first time. I was immediately invited to eat with Sheila and her friends, Brady and Jen. Brady and Jen were attending WDS for their second year in a row. All three of them shared their inspiring stories and their plans for the future. I met many more wonderful people from all over the world throughout the event.
I’m not going to step through every minute of my three days in Portland, but I wanted to give you an idea of how the weekend started. The unique energy and amazing people were the theme of the entire weekend. The events were filled with inspiring people both brought in for the event and from the audience as well. When we were not in the Arlene Schnitzer concert hall there were meetups and events planned all weekend. You could easily go three days without sleeping.
Imagine yourself surrounded by 2,500 unconventional people who have common goals and the spirit to change the world. I can’t say enough about the opportunity to meet people, network, and make lifelong friendships. If you are the kind of person who is dedicated to community, adventure, and service I cannot think of a better place to spend your time than the WDS.
If I was going to focus on one thing I learned for the next year it would be this:
Say your dreams out loud. Take imperfect action. Let go. – Jadah Sellner
Lessons Learned for Next Year
- Figure out the website early. There was a lot of information there once you knew how to find it.
- Keep on top of the meetups. They add new ones all weekend and some of them fill up fast. Other than the main stage, meetups are some of the best places to meet new people and learn skills specific to your interests.
- Everything is within walking distance.
- Talk to as many people as possible. Make a game out of it. One good way to keep track is to take pictures of people with their name tags. If they are on social media add them ASAP. Also, take notes.
- Bring business cards. They don’t have to be fancy.
If you would like to know more shoot me an email or leave a comment and let me know.
What are some of the best conferences you have been to and why?