Express Yourself

On the plane heading home from the motherland.

Last Saturday morning, I woke to the sounds of a not so welcomed alarm at 7am.  The night before, I spoke(yelled) – along with Ben and Sam, to a crowd of 10,000 people, on stage at Red Rocks – to initiate the 2nd annual Icelantic’s Winter on the Rockes Concert with Macklemore an d Ryan Lewis.  Many of you were there – If you weren’t there – I’m sorry to hear that – and we missed you!  The night was epic, and late – so waking up at 7 (a mere 3 hours after laying my head down) wasn’t too cool.

The reason for waking up though, was.

I was receiving an award from the OIWC (Outdoor Industry Women’s Coalition) for outstanding leadership in the outdoor/snowsports industry – a totally unexpected recognition that I am deeply humbled and honored by.

As I walked on stage to receive my award, after an awesomely flattering introduction from one of my female mentors in the industry, my heart began to pound the against the chest walls.   Speaking in front of a large crowd has never been my bagger.  Especially when the topic is me.

With the ‘trophy’ in my hand, I stepped to the microphone and my head went blank.  I started – fumbling over every other word – tired, excited and running on a couple slices of bacon and adrenaline from the previous two days of tradeshow.  All I could think about was how easy it was for me to stoke up the crowd of 10,000 people the night before, and how stifled I was there, in that moment, before an intimate 150.   Eventually, the message that came out (I think), was that we are all different – and at the same time, euqal..  Men, women, old, young, skier, snowboarder, chalets, couches –we come from diverse experiences and therefore have different perspectives.  Honing in, particularly on the men/women dichotomy – and how, since I work with all Men, all the time, I’ve learned that it is SO important to voice my perspective.  It’s scary at times because it is so drastically different from what the ‘masses’ are thinking, but at the same time, the only reason it is this way, is because it is different, and the only threat comes from within me.  Once it gets out of my head and into the world, it’s a lot less intimidating, powerful – it’s just thoughts.  And a new perspective – that they probably never even knew existed.

I spoke of how important it is to be a woman in business and to embrace this is to change how the world works.  By injecting your opinion (man or woman), so long as it’s rooted in truth, passion or some organ in your body, a rawness will be revealed and all will benefit.

My speech was maaaaaaaybe 25% as eloquent as the above words, but I hope my message was communicated.

A couple women approached me afterwards with tears in their eyes, and I got to meet Donna and Jake Burton – so all was good in my book.  A little embarrassed by my fumbling, but overall – stoked.

Here’s a link to the recognition on the OIWC (Outdoor Industry Women’s Coalition) page:  http://www.oiwc.org/?AnneliseLoevlie  

I left the room, got in my moms car (thanks Ma!!) and drove to DIA for a flight to Munich to do the tradeshow marathon all over again.

What a ride.

Moral of the story:   Express Yourself.   Madonna is no dummy.

Much Love and Music,

Annelise

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