Finding Confidence and Community

Last week, I attended the Haven Conference. The biggest take away I got from it was confidence and community. It was unexpected. I told my husband and a fellow blogger “Haven made me feel inspired and confident.


(Photo Credit:

I won’t talk about being inspired because that’s a given when you’re at a conference with over 300 ladies who are in the DIY and Home niche. I already know these women are creative. So I had no doubt they would be inspirational.

Going into the conference, I didn’t know one person. There was no one I knew in real life. I did not even have an on-line relationship with them except for a few short intros in social media.

HavenConference2013(Photo Credit: Ballard Designs)

So at the conference, I did my best to wear a smile on my face and introduce myself to those around me. It was a big challenge for me to be in a room full of strangers and just start talking. It was way out of my comfort zone. But I did it…sometimes I was afraid and nervous…but I did it. You know what happened – conversations, connections and friendships. And my confidence started growing.

I attended several sessions. They ranged from blogging tips to home improvement tips. I not only learned about blogging but how important it is to talk and have open communications with other bloggers. The message I heard loud and clear was – we are in this together, we must work together. Together. And my confidence kept growing.

The time in between sessions consisted of meeting sponsors, parties and mealtime chats. I formed more connections and friendships plus learning, laughter and encouragement. And my confidence kept growing.

HavenConferenceDinner2013(New blogging friends: Jena from Involving Color, me, Anna – my wonderful roommate from A Good Home Etsy Shop and A Good Home Blog, Megan from Rhappsody in Rooms and Christina from Homemade Ocean)

To sum it all up…

My confidence was growing because my community was growing.

Honestly, until this conference, I felt alone in this blogging thing. Yes, I’ve met wonderful friends in my 3.5 years of blogging. I’ve met supportive friends. But this new feeling I got from Haven is different. It was a big reminder that…

It’s all about Community

  • You’re not alone. There are others who can relate to you.
  • Collaboration and Contribution. Ideas and advice are shared. Help is given.
  • Encouragement. Helping others understand their worth and to believe in themselves.

The list above is based on blogger relationships but I believe it applies to other parts of life as well. It could be mom playgroups, BUNCO groups, book clubs, volunteer groups, running groups or a charity group. It’s important to find one.

I remember over 6 years ago I moved to Pennsylvania and knew no one. I found a group of moms who were all in the same season of life as me. They became my friends, my support system, they could relate to me, they were my community. I am thankful to them. They were one of the reasons I started to love my new town and home.

Community can help give you the “we’re all in this together” feeling. Personally, that feeling helps me to believe in myself, to continue doing what I love and to share it with you.

So that’s my take on confidence and community. I’m not saying insecurities won’t creep up on me from time to time. But I’ll lean on my community – family, friends, loyal readers and my new blogging friends to help me.

Please read other recaps of the Haven Conference HERE. And a big thank you to the Haven team. My only regret was not having enough time to meet more fabulous Haven Mavens.


  1. Debbie! What a great post!! I loved hearing your thoughts on it…and it was so well written. I love how Haven has been so transformative for so many! I am very happy I was able to meet you and can’t wait to see our friendship grow!

    • Thanks Megan! I am so happy I met you. I loved seeing your friendly face throughout my time at the conference.

  2. Jill Sanderson says:

    Great post Debbie! I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed the conference, made new friends, and gained confidence in yourself! It’s amazing how much we can gain by giving just a little of ourselves to others. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thank you Jill! You are a true friend. Yes, I do believe we can gain much by giving just a little of ourselves to others.

  3. Debbie, I’m SO glad we met and had so much time to chat. Haven was a blast, and I never would have guessed you were out of your comfort zone at the beginning. I was wandering around that first party with nobody to talk to, and you were so nice and friendly! I am already excited for Haven 2014!

    • Thanks Jena! I’m glad you didn’t notice I was out of my comfort zone. Haven was such a great experience. I can not wait for Haven 2014!

  4. Debbie – this was a great post! I also felt like I was blogging alone before Haven; and now I have a wonderful, supportive circle of blog friends. It’s amazing! And it was such a pleasure to meet you and hang out for a bit.

    I hope you have a great week!


    • Hi Laura – Thanks! I agree -blogging is so much better with supportive blog friends. It was great to meet you at Haven and I look forward keeping in touch with you.

  5. I am SOOOOO happy I got to meet you 🙂

  6. Hey Debbie, Love your post & happy you were able to attend the Haven Conference! & enjoyed sponsoring the event and hope to connect with you even more! Be sure to take a look at the photos from the event on Facebook, tag yourself & share with family/friends! 🙂

    • Thank you for being a sponsor at Haven. It was an amazing conference. Your photos are great! Thank for visiting my blog.

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