I‘ve always considered it a red flag when blogging starts to feel like high school. You know what I mean, right? The insecurity, competition, endless popularity contests. Last week at BlissDom, however, I experienced the flip side again—the freedom of youth mingled with the wisdom of experience.

Ugly emotions surface when you compare yourself to others, when you weigh your worth beside someone else’s and find yourself lacking. Here’s the thing: there will always be someone who does it better than you, whether it is write, photograph, craft, build brand relationships, or whatever.

But is comparison and competition really how adult friendships are formed?

And isn’t this ultimately about friendships?

Online friendships are forged in the comment box and the email conversation and the Skype room and the phone call, and cemented at conferences and local events and if you’re really, really lucky, while cruising the streets of Nashville listening to Paul Simon in a sponsored Camaro convertible with red racing stripes.

Or acting silly in a Smilebooth.

For me, this BlissDom conference wasn’t about keynotes, concerts, sponsor suites, and swag—although I certainly enjoyed them all—it was about connecting deeper and growing friendships that distance doesn’t diminish.

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