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International Coworking Day 2019

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If you didn’t know, August 9 is a big day in the coworking industry: International Coworking Day! Spaces from all over the globe are gearing up for this day that celebrates everything about the industry and how far it has come with each passing year. Coworking is not about competition, but rather collaboration and it is this fact that makes this day so important and special. International Coworking Day shows that each space is bigger than themselves, part of a greater global movement.

Coworking as an industry has been around for ten years and only continues to grow as each new year passes. The industry is changing the way people all around the world think about working and is changing societal views of the overall work-life balance.

These stats from GCUC from 2018 (a big coworking conference that we have mentioned before- check them out!) are astounding, and I am going to let these numbers speak for themselves. 

  • There are more than 14,000 spaces in the world
  • There are 1 million members in said spaces 
  • Independently owned and operated spaces account for 93% of the industry 
  • 89% of people who work in a coworking space report being happier as a product of working in a shared space
  • 84% are more engaged and motivated 
  • 73% say that they maintain their sanity throughout the work day 
  • 83% report they feel less lonely 

Coworking as a whole is changing societal pressures surrounding the typical 9-to-5 job. If you consider yourself a “workaholic,” you can benefit just as much from working in a shared space as someone who may only work a few hours a day. The culture of a coworking space is palpable. The industry unites people who come from traditional office settings, those who work from home who are longing to get out of the house and find something different, freelancers and more to create what is known as coworking. Simply put, coworking is changing lives. 

We here at Ment Cowork are celebrating International Coworking Day, too! On Friday from 12:30 until 2, we are going to be out in front of 911 College Street bringing coworking to you. Find our sign (the one in the picture) and come see us. Tell us your -ment word, which is a word that describes you that has our suffix in it. Think empower-ment, commit-ment, enjoy-ment, you name it. Take a picture of your word at our sign and post it on your Instagram story to be entered into a GIVEAWAY for a Ment tee shirt and mug! Who doesn’t love free stuff? Come celebrate International Coworking Day with us, we can’t wait! 

Getting Zesty – Interview with Emma Napier

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Happy August! Each month for the rest of the year, Ment is partnering with a local business on our blog and social media accounts. This month is Zest Juice for Life, owned by Emma Napier: a 24-year-old from Bowling Green, Kentucky. The local juice shop located in the heart of the downtown scene has many flavors of tasty, healthy juice and they promote a healthy lifestyle in everything they do. 

Emma Napier, a graduate from Western Kentucky University, got her start working in an office for a national company in a corporate office. She was teaching spinning at The Spot next door to what would be her future business as well. She loved her coworkers and the work she was doing but disliked the stuffy and strict culture that was in her cubicle-filled office. “I soon realized that sitting at a desk was not for me,” she recalls.  

                             

Emma knew the previous owner of Zest from her job at The Spot and soon became friends with her. From this friendship, she fell in love with juice. She would drive all the way across town to get juice from the original Zest, the home of the former owner. The owner mentioned selling the business and asked if she knew of anyone who was interested. Emma knew instantly that this was the perfect opportunity to transition out of the cubicle and bought Zest Juice for Life. 

One of Emma’s favorite things about owning Zest is the amazing small business community located in Bowling Green. While she is a fairly new business owner, owners from all over town have offered to help her. “Bowling Green has such a thriving community of small business owners and truly want to see each other succeed,” she notes. She says learning a lot from so many people who have been in the same shoes as her. She has gotten to work with and collaborate with some of them and says they have helped her create her space, the logo, the menu boards, and more. 

  

Of course, I had to ask Emma what her -ment word was, which is a little something we do here at Ment by picking your favorite word with -ment as the subject and having it describe you, such as experiment, achievement, nourishment. Emma said her word was encourage-ment. She aims to be a smiling face to anyone who walks through the doors of Zest, and hopes her encouraging spirit keeps people coming back for years to come. 

Emma’s favorite juice she sells is kickin’ carrot, a juice that contains apple, ginger, and the star: carrots. Other juices you can find at Zest include Kale Yeah!, Jolly Green, Happy Beet, or my favorite, Hula Hooch. 

Check Emma and the rest of the Zest team out on their Instagram: @zestjuiceforlife

Failing Forward

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Some amazing things have been created through what seems like “failure”: chocolate chip cookies, Penicillin, microwaves, fireworks, and more. Steve Jobs was fired from Apple, The Beatles were rejected by their first record label, and even more successful people have been knocked down a few times. 

Call it what you want—I am going to call it failing forward—it happens to the best of us, maybe when we least expect it to. It is bound to happen in any setting, but it could not be worse at work. You might have had a big presentation and completely bombed it, or a meeting did not go your way, or you overslept and missed a meeting with a potential client. Whatever the case may be, it happens to the best of us. 

Failing forward at work, school, in life, happens. While it is unavoidable, it is important to not let mistakes consume you. Big or small, it can affect our day to day lives. However, with the right mindset and attitude, you can turn a misstep into a success in the blink of an eye. 

  1. Own up to it. 

While it may be hard to take the blame for something that goes wrong, it will help you in the long run to be honest about your mistakes. Don’t provide endless excuses or cast the blame on another employee. Explain the scenarios of what went wrong, ensure it will not happen again, and figure out how to move forward. 

  1. Figure out your next course of action. 

After a mistake happens, it is hard to bounce back sometimes. Find a solution to your mistake and fix the problem at hand. Make things right. This is what failing forward is all about!

  1. Shift your mindset. 

I know, personally, when I mess up, I feel like that is all I am capable of from then on. If you fail once, it doesn’t mean you are going to continue to fail. Find something you know you are good at and focus on it for a little bit while you manage to get your groove back.

  1. Find the good. 

If you look closely, there is a silver lining in just about everything, especially your failures. There is a lesson buried in there: a way to grow. Find it and hold on tight; let it motivate you!  

  1. Take on your next big project—and succeed. 

I know it may be hard to get back on the horse, but when you do and you excel, you will feel even better. Make sure you really put the work into it to come out on the other side successful. Your “failure” will soon fade into memory. 

  1. You aren’t alone. 

You may feel like you are the only one going through a workplace mistake. That couldn’t be further from the truth! I would just about guarantee that most of your coworkers have made one mistake or another at their job, and if they haven’t, they aren’t learning. 

Don’t go out looking to make mistakes, but know when they inevitably occur, know that you can take them and grow from them. Take these tips into consideration when you feel down and out after failing forward at work, and you might just create the next greatest thing! 

Coworking and Your Mental Health

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It is no secret that the coworking industry is flourishing. People are flocking to spaces that offer flexible work hours, a community aspect and in-house perks in droves. What is the secret of coworking? How can this industry be doing so well? 

Mental health is a taboo subject in our society. We are taught from an early age to bottle our feelings up, leaving them unaddressed and us unfulfilled. Maybe it stems from being in a society where we are taught to conceal our feelings and push them aside. We have lost touch with expressing our emotions that they can cause us detriment down the road. There is a stigma surrounding mental health. The World Health Organization reports approximately 450 million people worldwide have a mental illness. Coworking, while not a sure-fire way to address and tackle mental health, is a step in the right direction. 

The coworking industry, through GCUC, strives to do more in this fight against the stigma of mental health. They have created the #CheckYoMate initiative, which is a movement that inspires you to check up on those around you: in your coworking spaces and your life in general. It is all about “dismantling loneliness and destigmatizing mental illness in the coworking community.” While it is important to check up on your coworkers, make sure you are doing the same for your friends, family members, neighbors, and whoever else you come in contact with. 

One of the best things about working in a coworking space is the community, there is no doubt. According to Global Coworking Unconference Conference, “Coworking is creating communities of happier, healthier, more productive, more connected professionals.” These communities are improving the lives and the mental health of every single person that walks through the door. 

A major component of working in a coworking space is the ability to make your own hours. Maybe you just cannot take working in a cubicle 40 hours a week and it is affecting your mental health. Sitting in such a small space makes you feel small. Your surroundings affect your mental health more than you realize. A coworking space is an alternative that promotes flexibility and freedom. Coworking can alleviate stress in a number of other ways. A space takes care of all the logistics of running an office for you: changing light bulbs, heating and air-conditioning, keeping the refrigerator stocked with snacks, and a myriad of others. All you have to do is sit down and get to work. 

Coworking was introduced as an alternative to working from home. When working from home, you might feel isolated, trapped, and you may slip into bouts of unproductivity as you slump down on the couch with your bowl of popcorn in the middle of the day. Aside from fueling procrastination, large periods of isolation at home just isn’t healthy for us. Humans crave interaction, simple as that. The alternative in a coworking space is the community. Working with others in a space that is not your home helps you separate your work life from your personal life, giving you some peace of mind. You are surrounded by people every single day. There are members all across the space doing their own thing, but you know they are there. You know you are not alone. 

It is unfortunate to think about, but millions of people suffer from some sort of mental health issue every single day. You do not know what is going on in someone’s life. That is what makes the coworking industry so unique. It provides ways for people to connect on an individual level, creating bonds and helping each other become successful in what they do. 

Here are some mental health resources if you are seeking help: 

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration 

MentalHealth.gov 

Mental Health America 

Bowling Green Mental Health Resources 

The Power of Empower-Ment

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Written by Pare and Flourish Co-Founders, Katie Butler and Skylar Wooden

When asked what our “-ment” word was, it was obvious. Empowerment.

From the start of Pare and Flourish, we had one mission in mind: to empower others. Through articles. Through close-knit conversations. Through panel discussions.  

And though it’s taken different forms, our mission has always been the same.

Carrying that vision forward, we’ve chosen Ment Cowork as the location for our second Flourishing Females event on June 1st. [This event includes a panel discussion about finding your niche, a workshop on grabbing your audience’s attention, and lots of food, drinks, and networking.]

Ment is leading the charge for coworking in Bowling Green, bringing with them a culture of uplifting collaboration—perfect for a day of learning, growing, and connecting with local female entrepreneurs. Perfect for empowerment.

>> Interested in checking it out? Information and tickets for the event are available here.

In honor of this event being at Ment, we’ve reflected on the ways we’ve set out to empower women in our community, and what empowerment means to us.

Empowering Our Readers

Whether it gives you the power to network without fear or to ask for that raise, a blog article speaks to a part in us that needs development. Parts of us that we know are there, but need a push to be put into motion.

That’s how we started—writing blog articles on topics we struggled through and learned from, in hopes of empowering someone else to jump the hurdle. We shared our advice in the most genuine, authentic way we could.

Here’s a snippet from our very first post, setting the tone for Pare and Flourish:

“It is a personal mission of ours not to romanticize our lives, as is so often done in the age of social media.

So here we have a safe space. A space for the real, the authentic, and the genuine.

In this blog, you can expect first-hand accounts of our daily life struggles, how we’ve learned (so far) to become happy with the choices that we’ve made, and pieces of advice that we would like to have learned earlier on. You’ll find that we’ve made mistakes. You will also find what we’ve made of those mistakes. We hope that you apply our retrospection to your life, and come out ahead.”

Read the rest of this article here.

Empowering Our Peers

When blog articles didn’t feel like enough—like we weren’t reaching enough people, like we weren’t making a big enough impact—we transitioned to events.

Our first foray into events was the Flourish Roundtable. Roundtables are small group discussions, promoting authenticity and empowerment.

We wanted more than screen engagement. We wanted real, deep connection based on topics that are relevant to all of our lives. To provide a place where women could look around and see that there are other women feeling similar emotions, having similar thoughts.

Roundtables are a place for thoughtful engagement, advice, support, and all the good feels.

Recounting a Roundtable experience, this is what we wrote:

“If you’ve ever wanted to be a part of something bigger than yourself, something that makes you feel connected to someone based on more than your common interests, but on your common beliefs and feelings, this is the place for you. A Flourish Roundtable event creates that connection. And we are honored to facilitate that connection.”

Read the rest of this article here.

Empowering Our Flourishing Females

When Roundtables weren’t enough, we widened our audience. Flourishing Females Panel + Workshops became a way to do more than gather.  

We widened our net to any woman who owns her own business, or aspires to. No matter the situation, there’s something to gain from this event.

Networking with like-minded women.

Learning from established entrepreneurs and leaders about their own challenges and advice.

Engaging in workshops to collaborate and motivate.

 

After our first Flourishing Females event, as always, we wrote about it.

“We created this Panel + Workshop as a way to expand our reach, and include a wider point of view from our panelists in their respective industries. Without knowing what shape it would take, we started putting together a panel, planning a workshop, and connecting everything in between.

We were overwhelmed with the number of people who were willing to jump in and make this happen. It confirmed something we already knew about Bowling Green: everyone wants to see each other succeed.”

Read the rest of this article here.

Join us at our second Flourishing Females Panel + Workshop to feel the empowerment first hand. Maybe you’re starting a business and need a network. Maybe you have a business and feel alone in it. Maybe you have a great idea and you need the courage to put it out there.

No matter what, and no matter what you do, this event is for you.  

Don’t forget to register!