The New York Times Best-Selling Author… and Me.

Life Lessons from the Problogger Event
Mademoiselle Slimalicious, Seana Smith and me {via Smilebooth Aust}


Last Saturday I found myself sharing the stage with a New York Times best-selling author.

We were having a casual chat about this blog and my big ideas for its growth. In front of, you know, 200-odd people. It was…surreal.

I was at the ProBlogger Event in Melbourne and had volunteered to publicly workshop my ideas with Chris Guillebeau in one of the sessions. It was ridiculously wonderful – inspirational, educational, motivational. And while talk of e-books, content creation and engagement are incredibly interesting to me, that’s not what I want to share with you.

Instead, I want to share the three amazing life lessons I learnt there.

Three Life Lessons Learnt at ProBlogger Event

Yes, each of these was originally a lesson on blogging, but each of them is so poignant and beautiful that they apply perfectly to the life you’re creating. A life of simplicity, happiness and meaning. You can apply them to your life today, and you certainly don’t need to be a blogger to do so.

Lesson #1: Small Actions Add Up to Big Changes

What can you achieve in 15 minutes?

As an isolated unit of time, it’s not very significant. You may be able to hang the laundry, flick through the newspaper, go for a walk, write a few hundred words.

But if you commit to 15 minutes of action every single day, 15 minutes spent working towards a simpler life, this will have a huge impact.

15 minutes a day
1 3/4 hours a week
91.25 hours a year

In other words, 15 minutes a day gives you 11.8 working days a year in which to simplify and create the life you want.

Life is busy, I know. If you’re struggling to see where you can find those extra 15 minutes, think about these options:

  • Watch one less television show.
  • Wake 15 minutes earlier.
  • Get off Facebook.
  • Ask your partner to sit with the kids for 15 minutes in the morning or evening.

You can find 15 minutes a day. I know you can. It’s just a matter of committing to change.

It’s what you do with those 11.8 days a year that will change your life.

  • Write a book
  • Declutter your entire home
  • Start a business
  • Launch a website
  • Learn a language

15 minutes doesn’t sound significant, but look at what you can do with it. REMEMBER: Small actions add up to big changes.

Lesson #2: Be a Life-Long Student

I was in a room with some of the best and brightest wordsmiths and tech-heads in the country. These people know their stuff. They are experts. They are innovating an entire industry. And yet, they were there with their minds open, ready to learn.

You can never know everything. Ever.

This photo from Eden Riley speaks volumes. That’s Darren – the ProBlogger – sitting in on a session at his own event, open to learning. Listening, taking in the knowledge that filled the room.

darren rowse at problogger event - still learning
{via Eden Riley}

Lesson #3: Say Yes to Opportunity

Have you ever been faced with an opportunity – a brilliant, once in a lifetime opportunity – only to let it slip by as you stay seated, hands in lap, eyes cast down, silently praying you don’t get picked?

Trust me on this – you need to learn to say yes to opportunity.

That’s how I found myself sharing the stage with Chris Guillebeau.

The idea terrified me. But I recognised the opportunity and studiously ignored the shy voice in my head pleading, “No, no. Please. Get your hand down. I can’t possibly do that.” My hand went up and before I knew it, I was on the stage.

The payoff was immediate and incredible. I was literally inundated with ideas and feedback – invaluable ideas and feedback from some of the best in the business. The universe repaid my willingness to say yes, and it repaid me handsomely.

So learn to say yes to opportunity.

You will meet wonderful people. You will experience incredible things. You will surprise yourself every single time.


Those 3 Lessons Again:

#1 Small actions add up to big changes.
#2 Become a life-long student.
#3 Learn to say yes  to opportunity – even when it’s terrifying.

Learn them and apply them to your life. Today.


For those of you who missed the event, there are now Virtual Tickets available to buy, allowing you online access to the slides and audio of each session. I’ve already listened to some of the sessions I missed and will definitely be referring back to those I attended – that’s how packed full of info they were.

Over 21 hours of audio on blogging, online marketing and internet business – delivered by some of the best bloggers, authors and businesspeople in the world. My favourites were Shayne Tilley’s session on launching a product and James Tuckerman’s keynote. Amazing.

If you’re interested in learning more about the Virtual Ticket, click here and see what else is included*.

(*Affiliate link – meaning I will receive a commission if you purchase the Virtual Ticket through this link. Regardless, I would be recommending this anyway – it is that good.)


What was the last life-changing experience you had? How did it change you?


15 Responses to The New York Times Best-Selling Author… and Me.

  1. I have been saying yes to the universe lately and have been having a great time. Sometimes we need a small nudge to get started and a little friendly encouragement to keep going. Thank you for the encouragement.

    • Pleasure, Christine! I’m constantly amazed by how much there is to gain by saying yes. Glad to hear it’s paying off for you too. :)

  2. What a great lessons to have learnt. I was also at the event and have walked away feeling empowered. I am in the process of slowing down my home and your blog has been invaluable.

    • Thanks, Laurel! It was such an amazing event, wasn’t it? Let me know if there’s anything you’d like to see me write about – I’m all ears. :)

  3. Oh, I had no idea you got workshopped by Chris (so to speak). How fun and scary! I’ll be so interested to see what comes of it.

    I must admit, like you, I picked up lots of life lessons. And learnt so much from *how* the speakers, and many of the attendees, lived, learned and wrote.

    Was fun, hey?

    • Heehee. I did get workshopped. It was one of those moments where I was gripped with temporary bravado and I was on stage before I realised what was happening. So incredible though. It was such fun!

  4. What a great opportunity! I really appreciate lesson #1. I fritter away too many 15 minute chunks of my life. Going to start thinking about what I want to do with the ones I start treating with more respect. (Facebook is not a good use of them!) As for my last life-changing experience…It’s so hard to know, isn’t it? Maybe it was that post I wrote yesterday, or that conversation I had with a colleague, or the piece I submitted for publication. Which means we just need to be open all the time, no? :-)

    • It’s funny, that lesson turned out to be one of the accidental themes of the event. So many successful people were saying the same thing – l5 minutes, 20 minutes. It all adds up to big things.

  5. I have been trying to say yes to more things this year and it’s really paying off. For me it was either Problogger or the $100 Startup meet up afterwards. It was probably both of them mixed in together. I think because I found other people that believed in my ideas, and helped me to see that it was possible.
    It was lovely to meet you last week, congratulations on being brave enough to say Yes to that opportunity!

    • So lovely to meet you too, Dannielle! Sounds like the next few months are all going to be life-changing for you. But just being surrounded by people who were on the same page was incredibly inspiring. :)

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