Here to Make Friends: why I’m going to my third BullCon – Guest Post by Mariah MacCarthy

Mariah MacCarthy

Today we’re turning over the mic to BullCon multi-attendee Mariah MacCarthy. Read why they’re coming back to BullCon — and why you should join us, too!

When #BullCon16 rolled around, I had just left my Executive Assistant day job about six months prior, and was transcribing and writing ladyblog articles to make rent. I wasn’t in an amazing financial place to attend a conference, but I’d been wanting to go to BullCon for years. Well, part of why I left my terrible day job was so I’d have the freedom to do things like this, right? I put the plane tickets on a credit card and went – and then paid off the balance three months later.

I could tell you, totally truthfully, that I’ve since made thousands in income from connections I made at the last two BullCons, more than recouping the initial investment of the registration + lodging + plane ticket. I could show you the glowing testimonials on my website from fellow Bullicorns who became my clients. I could tell you about how folks I met at Bullish conferences came to see my plays in New York, or joined my Patreon. All of this would be true.

But honestly, to me, none of those are the most important reasons to go. The biggest reason to go to BullCon is because it’s attended by some of the coolest people you will ever meet. Seriously. And those people will let you know, “Darling, it’s not just you. The world is full of bullsh*t and we are here to do something about it.” Surrounded by brilliant humans from all kinds of industries, from all over the States and the world, all so different and yet all of whom share a common context for viewing and experiencing the world, you feel validated. Seen. Reflected. It’s truly a kind of utopia, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that.

(A personal side note: Part of that utopia for me is that it’s a conference for women AND NONBINARY PEOPLE. This is my first time attending as an openly nonbinary human, and it was such a relief to get the Bullish email with the words “women and nonbinary people” so I didn’t even have to worry whether I was welcome or not. Little things make a big difference.)

BullCon may be a “career” or “business” conference, but the level of vulnerability and intimacy that happens between attendees is profound. At that first conference, I remember having conversations in the hot tub about how to relate to people, or strategies for challenges with our romantic partners. Last year, I had the privilege of being a BullCon speaker, giving a seminar on “How to Recover After Life Punches You In the Face.” At the end, I opened the floor to my audience and asked them, “What are your tips for when life punches you in the face?” Folks were sharing their grief survival strategies, talking about their life-punching moments, and crying. I was floored by the level of trust that attendees showed each other.

So yes, go to BullCon to network. Go to make professional connections. But above and beyond that, go to meet your new soul-siblings. Go to see how the world could be, and maybe ought to be all the time. Go to nourish your heart.

-Mariah

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