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    Balance is a Journey

    Posted on: July 9, 2014

    The Circuit, July/August 2014
    Written By: Lauren Williams

    Women wear many hats. In today’s busy world, prioritizing between your career and having a personal life can be a huge challenge. And spending too much time in one area of life can often disrupt the other areas. The 5th Annual Women’s Work-Life Symposium, presented by Emerald Coast Hospice, was trying to restore that sense of balance in all aspects of life. wosym1On Friday, May 16th, over 250 women from across the Emerald Coast attended this daylong conference where 7 dynamic speakers brought with them beneficial elements to achieving work/life balance.

    This event, held annually at Florida State University Panama City’s Holley Academic Center, is designed to inspire women from all aspects of life to achieve their goals and become the best version of them. The Women’s Work-Life Symposium encourages women to make a valuable investment in themselves and see just what a difference a day can make!

    The morning kicked off with a delicious networking breakfast and exhibitor showcase in the atrium prior to the first keynote session. Once the ladies finally took their seats, Dr. Evelyn Wynn-Dixon brought them to tears, laughter, and new attitudes. Being overcome by obstacle after obstacle, Dr. Wynn-Dixon shared how she persevered through homelessness and difficult times to become the successful mayor of a metropolitan suburb in Atlanta, Ga. Her determination and good ol’ southern attitude was just what the crowd needed to wake them up and give them a moving start to a power-packed day.

    After attendees enjoyed a delicious lunch, catered by Bud & Alley’s Restaurant, they were given a message about managing money from the Financial Diva herself, Victoria Woods. Sharing her years of expertise in sales, sales training, and business management, she brought a unique perspective to understanding the world of finance. Mixing her wit and wisdom, her practical, easy-to-understand advice had everyone leaving feeling a little more comfortable or determined about understanding their own fiscal situations.

    Jan McInnis was the final keynote session of the event. Definitely a force not to be reckoned with, Jan left everyone in tears—from laughing too hard that is! This comedian from California taught everyone how to “find the funny” in any life situation. We all know that change can be difficult to accept. But thanks to Jan and her humor, everyone can breathe a little easier when an unwelcome circumstance is thrust in our paths.

    wosym2Breakout workshops, the exhibitor showcase, door prizes, and the Maharaja’s Le Vian chocolate jewelry giveaway kept the entire day upbeat. Women left with take-aways on everything from DIY home projects, to becoming a more beautiful you inside and out. In “work-life balance,” there are numerous elements to include in its definition, but the symposium left no surface untouched with each breakout and keynote session.

    To conclude the event, women gathered outside on the terrace for a waterfront wine-tasting and mini-cupcake desserts. They continued to visit the exhibitors, and networked with new friends they just spent the day with. It was truly a gorgeous afternoon with even more gorgeous company!

    Balance is a journey. And whether you were a mom, daughter, entrepreneur, CEO, or student that attended this event, every woman left with something special and discovered something about them that they had not previously known.

    **Continue on your journey of balance at the 6th Annual Women’s Work-Life Symposium on Friday, May 22nd at FSU PC’s Holley Academic Center!

    Read what some of last year’s attendees thought of the 5th Annual Women’s Work-Life Symposium speakers!

    “Marsha Doll’s Always Fab-U-Lous workshop did not disappoint. Her message of self-confidence and self-respect was a great reminder to find the fabulous in everyone, especially ourselves.” –Jill Burnham, The Resort Collection

    “I found Victoria Woods to be a breath of fresh air and thoroughly enjoyed her presentation on Financial Literacy. She was engaging, energetic, and incredibly informative.”-Heather Russell, Carr Riggs Ingram

    “Annetta Wilson’s workshop, You’ve Got Less than 15 Seconds. Impress Me! was priceless. However, she helped those of us participating do much more than learn the impact of first impressions. Her presentation was interactive and we all left with the ability to clearly and confidently talk about our unique abilities, expertise, and introduce ourselves to others in a dynamic way! She helped us establish and then articulate the most important part of us- our heartbeat!” –Erica Spivey, Nanthealth

    “Dr. Evelyn Wynn-Dixon was inspirational and heartwarming. No matter what life threw at her, she fought to overcome every obstacle she faced. Her message related to women of all ages and stressed not letting our life circumstances define who we are. It was a profound reminder that with faith, humor and perseverance we have the opportunity to change our own circumstances and succeed in every aspect of our lives.”-Kristina Williams, Emerald Coast Hospice (Presenting Sponsor)

    “Listening to how things in her (Jennifer Clark) life have unfolded with the good and the bad makes you want to see how she is doing in a few years. You care for her and she seems to care deeply about others. It is moving. It is truly a great story of resilience. The strength of women is amazing and she is the celebration of that asset.”-Terri Hoehn, Centennial Bank

    “The Home Depot Do-It-Herself workshop was such an innovative concept for the Women’s Symposium. It was fun and interactive! I hope in future Women’s Symposiums, the task force continues to think outside the box and bring beneficial takeaway workshops to women, like this one!”- Shay Catrett, Bay Solutions

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