Last week, while I was in Florida at the Mom 2.0 Summit, I had the chance to interview a whole bunch of powerhouse women. Some one-on-one, and some on a panel. Talking to amazing women is one of my very favorite things to do. Here’s a little report:
It started on Thursday, with the Dove opening keynote speaker, actress Julianna Margulies. She was so good. She talked about being the producer on the New York set of The Good Wife, and finding herself hesitant to yell, “Quiet on the Set!” Because she didn’t want to sound like a bitch. She had to remind herself: “If I was a guy I wouldn’t hesitate. A guy would just consider himself to be a good leader.”
She discussed “how afraid of strong women weak men are,” and how “it’s time the weak men to just get out of the way and allow the rest of us to do our jobs.”
She advised us to “Have the courage to be in limbo during transitions. Sometimes a door has to close before another one can open.”
She talked about aging and wanting to “instill the idea that age is a privilege.” She said, “There’s a freedom in becoming a woman. And I don’t know if you really get there until at least 35.”
In response to a shocking Dove research statistic that says: 8 out of 10 girls and 9 out of 10 women stop doing something they love based on how they feel about the way they look, she recalled a memory from her childhood. She played the flute for 9 years and loved it so much. But once, during a recital, she caught a glimpse of herself, and hated how her mouth looked on the flute. She thought she looked like a duck, so she stopped playing. (Heartbreaking!)
After the keynote, I was able to interview her one-on-one. She had mentioned that after The Good Wife ended, it took her almost a year to feel rested and recovered. We discussed how women often overwork themselves and neglect self-care, and whether or not those physically demanding sacrifices are necessary to produce good work or good art. She feels strongly that she wouldn’t ever commit to that sort of hectic schedule again. (If you like, you can see a photo of the two us together here.)
After interviewing Julianna, I attended a small workshop, led by the amazing Jess Weiner, on Self Esteem. This was also presented by Dove.
I loved the workshop. We discussed the narratives about women we see in Hollywood productions, and voiced our opinions on where those narratives come from. Then we split into pairs and interviewed each other on video, using iPads. The interviews were about things like how we discuss beauty with our daughters, when we feel the most beautiful ourselves, and what we’ve seen out there that seems to be helping change the narrative around beauty.
I left the workshop a couple of minutes early, because I was asked to interview Gabby Bernstein before her afternoon keynote presentation.
When I first met her we joked about our matching GB initials and how often we use the name Gabrielle versus Gabby. Hahaha.
During the interview we talked about framing pain as progress. She was the first afternoon keynote speaker and nailed it — she had us all mediating by the end and it was so calming. You can watch the short interview on Facebook, and I’m embedding it here as well.
After the keynotes, I did some Instagram Stories in the luxe Dove Lounge. They had a full on dry bar where all the ladies were getting their hair done for the evening. Plus, there was a team of chemists who were introducing the new Baby Dove line. Have you seen it yet? It’s super, super gentle. There are actually 2 lines within Baby Dove. There’s the Rich Moisture line — it’s hypoallergenic with pH neutral, tear-free cleansers, and a fragrance specifically developed for delicate baby skin. And there’s also the Sensitive Moisture line, which is fragrance free and purposely developed for babies with sensitive skin.
I brought home a pack of the Baby Dove wipes and already feel like I’m a super fan.
On Friday, I started the day meeting Julie Aigner Clark (founder of Baby Einstein), Jill Smokler (founder of Scary Mommy), and Cindy Whitehead (VC and creator of female viagra), so we could connect before our panel. I was the moderator and prepped interview questions for each of these amazing women. If you missed out, no worries, it was recorded! You can watch the whole panel discussion on Facebook, and I’m also embedding it here.
Side note: this video was running without sound on my laptop and it caught my eye — I keep laughing at how much I talk with my hands. Holy Big Gestures, Batman! Too funny.
Oh my goodness! Such a terrific conference. I tell you, I barely slept. When I wasn’t interviewing the amazing women mentioned in this post, I was having deep dive conversations, late into the night, with other amazing women. I arrived home very, very late on Saturday, just in time for Mother’s Day, feeling exhausted and inspired at the same time.
Now it’s your turn. I’d love to hear: When’s the last time to had a really good conversation with an amazing woman? Is it a regular occurrence for you? Or a rarity?