I love the desert. I love spending time with smart women. I love learning new things. I spent two days last week at TED Women in Palm Springs experiencing dozens of TED Talks. In addition to learning a lot about the major problems in our world and some possible solutions, I also learned about myself in ways big and small, superficial and profound.
Here are the ten most valuable and not-so-valuable lessons I learned at TED Women:
- I suck at meditation even though I have the right outfit and am excellent at deep breathing after giving birth to four children.
- A little humor goes a long way — every TED talk that made me laugh has stuck with me in a way that the others didn’t.
- One thousand women being incredibly inclusive and welcoming to each other was an act of civil disobedience against the belief that women are exclusive and catty.
- An excess of energy bars and PH-balanced water makes me feel crummy and bloated.
- As attendees we could both hear how humans are rapidly destroying our planet and still drink several plastic water bottles a day.
- I felt really uncomfortable having my photo taken at photo booths designed for Instagram, but I still did it because I needed an image for this piece.
- I love sleeping in a hotel room by myself, especially if there are really nice sheets on the bed.
- The women who work at Facebook, besides Sheryl Sandberg, are really, really lovely.
- Women love talking about puberty, menstruation and sex when there are no men around and there is lots of free wine.
- Having a company named Dynamo Girl is awesome for name tags.