Last November I decided to start a group to bring together all the amazing women that I know here in Victoria. I decided to call it WomenAlive. My vision was to create a group through which women could get to know each other in a meaningful way, having deeper conversations than sometimes we have during our rushed and hectic lives. And of course, I wanted us to have fun! I envisioned that we’d have some events at people’s homes, and some events out in the community doing things that we don’t normally get a chance to do on our own or actually make the effort to undertake for ourselves.
In short, I wanted another excuse to live the kind of life I myself want to live, and I wanted to bring together other women who might want to do the same thing. And I’m so pleased to say, it’s totally worked so far!
The first event was at my house in November, where about 20 women came together to mix, mingle, have a few beverages and generally get to know each other. We spent a lot of time going around the room and – one by one – answering questions that I had made up beforehand on little cards. We each drew a card and answered questions like:
- “What is one thing you’ve always wanted to do but haven’t done yet?”
- “If your house was on fire and you could only save one thing, what would it be?”
- “How would you spend the perfect afternoon?”
- “If you could be the best in the world at any one thing, would would it be?”
And so on. It was amazing. Right away the group was honest, open, full of life and laughter. Some vulnerabilities surfaced, and everyone was supportive, connective and great. It was amazing.
Since that night we’ve had two other events: a Walking Pilgrimage earlier this month with Nicole Moen, and a Collage Night last night at my house. While very different events, both left me feeling energized and happy. The group is turning into exactly what I want it to be.
My vision is that even though WomenAlive may grow in size, we will keep the numbers of each individual event small so that people can connect better with each other. This is not a networking group, it’s meant to go deeper. Friendships are developing! And for the most part, we really don’t talk about work. Right now, there are about 40 women in the group, either people that I know or people who know someone else in the group. While we are taking new members, it’s by referral only. We connect through a Facebook group ostensibly, but the real connections happen at the events. A running group has even started because of WomenAlive!
I’m going through life trying to figure out ways to build community and this is one of them. Doing things like this helps me feel alive, so hence the name. I can’t wait to dream up our next events!
If you are a friend or acquaintance of mine in Victoria and you’re interested in joining WomenAlive, please ask me. For the rest of you, I encourage you to start groups in your own area such as this! Just think about it…what would it take for you to feel really alive?