It was one of many weekly reflections we do in the Semester Accelerator I'm in at Watson Institute. We were challenged to write a letter to our demons (e.g. imposter syndrome or anxiety) and have a pretend conversation with them.
A week later, we reflected on community resilience.
The next week, on the abundance vs. scarcity mindset.
Then, what enables + inhibits creativity.
Tonight, I'll be writing about creativity's role in social innovation.
Writing these reflections is my personal highlight of the past two months.
They challenge me to learn from past experiences + the world and help strengthen my creativity + writing.
I plan on continuing to write reflections on experiences + learnings as much as possible because I realized how many experiences I completely forgot about until seeing weekly reflection prompts.
What I learn doesn't matter, if I don't remember + do anything with it.
Writing life updates like this is one way to reflect on what I've been learning + doing and allows me to share those reflections with others.
This update includes:
A recommendation on influencer marketing for XPRIZE
8 highlights from February + March 2021
My top 5 recent learnings
Creating An Influencer Marketing Strategy Recommendation For XPRIZE
Our focus in Activate this March was working on a capstone project with XPRIZE. We were challenged to come up with a recommendation on: "How XPRIZE can get 1,000 teams to submit proposals to Elon's carbon capture prize and prizes in the future?" I teamed up with Nyla Pirani and we started learning more about the carbon space, what a good team experience looks like, and having meetings to understand what potential applicants may look for. Our final recommendation was an influencer marketing strategy + translation tools to overcome the language barriers and reach approx. 7,900 applications for XPRIZE. Check out our deck below.
Watson Institute - Highlights include: speaking at CU Boulder on Trona, a brain trust with Eric Glustrom (Founder @ Watson Institute) + David Barnett (Founder @ PopSockets), and pitching to investors after a ton of learning at Funder's week. Love moments: Kim White, Brian Halloran, Caramia Valentin, Eben Johnson, and the Watson team.
Joining IBM's Garage + ideating on the futures of education.
MeetingMYX and joining their forum to co-create the future of post-secondary education. Love moments: Abby Brody + Ivan Cestero.
Building strong presentation skills. I've been participating in Talk Boutique's Thought Leader Academy for the past few months. Thank you, Andrea Sampson, Dan Jacob, and TKS for this opportunity. Shoutout to my pitch coach at Watson, Jeremy Wickenheiser, for the weekly feedback sessions.
I'm co-leading a club at TKS called Krebs Crew. The goal of our club is to create an environment to be creative and learn design skills. Last month, we had two design sprints and our upcoming sprint is on menstrual product design + distribution. Shoutout to my co-lead Christina Wang.
The Wychwood Barns Park design project I've been working on is complete. Our concept was an armature high-line to be utilized as a structure for sustainability, artwork, community-building, and more.
Spending time with my family is always an energizer. We've been going on lots of hikes and I often chase sunsets.
Top 5 Learnings
The Golden Circle + Starting With Why - This sparked from Simon Sinek's TED Talk and a conversation in my Transformative Entrepreneurship class. Starting from why > what is a key part of being successful: It helps you reach a good understanding of the problem being tackled, identify your intentions + drive to work on it, figure out what to focus on, and communicate to others why it's important.
Seek Understanding - Empathy interviews and validation meetings have shown me the importance of continuously seeking more perspectives and feedback on what I'm working on. I am also starting to see how vital it is to talk to people in local communities and take into account cultural considerations in problem-solving.
Systems ➡ Progress- The structures at Watson have helped me internalize the value of creating systems to enable progress. There's a strong culture of learn ➡ build ➡ feedback ➡ iterate 🔁. We apply skills (e.g. root cause analysis, empathy interviews, etc.) we learned in class, receive feedback, and iterate. In March, we designed + followed through on personal transformation experiments that involved systems ➡ progress for creating or breaking habits. It's inspired me to design more systems with forcing functions to make progress consistently.
Value of Community - I'm grateful to be a part of empowering communities of changemakers like Watson + TKS. I'm learning what strong communities look + feel like and the key components of creating them. This is a great resource I was recommended by Jeremy Wickenheiser (Executive Director @ Watson) on community building.
Creating Knowledge Trees- My Transformative Action class has helped me see the value in building and creating knowledge trees. There's so much I'm constantly learning but that doesn't mean anything meaningful will come out of it. I've started creating mind maps and expanding on my "knowledge trees" to retain learnings more effectively + turn them into action. Shoutout to Jim for inspiring this.
🎥 Watch: Seaspiracy - documentary on protecting our oceans.
👗 Learn: Diane Von Furstenberg's Masterclass - a key takeaway I had was the value of real-world experience + mentors.
I'm committing to learn + build in public.
I am making a commitment to learn and build in public.
The system I am starting with is posting reflections on learnings + building progress on my personal blog.
Visit my now page - to learn more about my April focuses.
RSVP here to attend Watson Summit (Thursday, April 29th @ 8:00-9:45 pm EST).
Thank you 3000 for reading this reflection + supporting my journey. <3 My challenge for you this month is to start doing reflections on past + present experiences. If you don't know where to start, I'd recommend tea with demons.
Happy Spring! 🌷
- Astro Girl
P.S. I always appreciate feedback. If you have any or we haven't caught up in a while, please shoot me an email.
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