This week Girls Perspective caught up with Crystal Williams the founder of Thinking Out Loud, poet, author and a motivational speaker.
What is ‘Thinking Out Loud’?
Thinking Out Loud is a conference held once a year. The aim of the conference is to show women that we are not in a position to be competing against each other and to encourage one another. It is trying to get rid of the idea of perfection and bringing the idea that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. Bringing a sense of contentment and helping people see a sense of purpose and self-love.
Why do you feel there is a need for the movement?
I don’t think there are many forums where women can just go and express themselves openly where its not just about self-image and how you look, I want to help women look deeper than that, and I think it’s very important.
Is this something that you do full time or on the side?
No, I work full time and so the finances I get from my work I use to self fund the event. The event it’s self has only been running for one year and I would ideally like to increase the number of conferences that we do in the year. However, because I am doing it on my own I am balancing that with work and I’m balancing that with being a mother and other roles.
What do you want people that attend one of your Thinking Out Loud conferences to get out of it?
I would really want people to see that they are still here, and they have made it through whatever situation they have been through, I would like them to appreciate themselves and find a sense of joy and happiness, as well as feeling uplifted and leaving with a sense of hope.
What has been the biggest challenge in creating the conference?
In creating the conference it has been putting all my ideas into reality and just making sure that all the things I see for the event come forward in what I’m trying to achieve. In terms of practical challenges, it has been finding a venue that is big enough and is affordable so that I don’t have to charge people as much to attend the conference.
For those that don’t know you have a book of poems called Still In Transition, how did that come about and how does your poetry help you?
Poetry is always a sense of therapy, it’s a way of expressing any sort of emotions I go through. I had all these collections of poems and people were always telling me when are you going to do a book. There was a passion in me to do it, so I gathered some of the poems I had written online and decided to put them into a book. At the time of writing the poems I was still in transition, so the title was very fitting to what the poems were about.
Your also an author and have written a few books. Women Side Chicks and The Others: The Unhealthy Emotions and also Resuscitate Me. Were these written from personal experiences?
Neither of them are both directly from my my personal experiences. However, If you read through them its still the same sense of women empowerment and understanding why we find ourselves in some situations and finding ways to come out of them as well as finding a way to be honest with ourselves. Those are what I would say are the themes of the book are and it’s just looking at that in different perspectives. You follow people through the journey and some people may feel that it’s them as they read it.
How do you think women can be more confident in themselves?
Firstly I think by being truthful and honest with themselves. The things that they may have been through in their lives, what they hoping to achieve, what things didn’t work out and accepting it. I think that when you have acceptance to where you are and where you want to be, then you make small steps to getting there and you become more confident in yourself.
Who are some of the people that inspire you?
I would say my biggest inspiration has definitely been my parents. My mum was in a male dominated industry working in airlines. She started off selling tickets and now is probably one of the most influential people in the industry. In terms of what she has achieved now such as, setting up airlines from scratch and building runways, for me to see a woman in that position demonstrated that ways can be created. Also my dad owns his own business and everything he has put his mind to, he has been able to achieve and that is an inspiration in its Self.
What are the 3 most important things you think are key to loving yourself
- Being mindful of the people that surround you.
- Being mindful of the things you watch and what you say to yourself.
- Taking time out for yourself so that you can pursue your passions.
What is something you know now, but wished you’d known earlier?
I wish I understood that just because you make a mistake, or things don’t go the way you want them to doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world. Tomorrow brings new hope and new opportunities, so just live life and don’t be fearful of every avenue.
What can people expect from a Thinking Out Loud event?
The speakers that I have come from different avenues of life and different professions. As there is a wide scope of topics covered, I would hope everybody leaves with some sort of hope, vision or purpose.
What is next for you?
I would like to take Thinking Out Loud further, to the next level. In addition I also aim to run courses with women on a one to one basis, either online or through workshops. Eventually the plan is to make this my full time job!
To keep up to date with the Thinking Out Loud events follow Crystal and her movement on Instagram Crystal Williams & Thinking Out Loud Official Or her website crystalwilliamsud.com where you can also purchase her books plus more!