Greenville Grok

A few weeks ago I attended my second Greenville Grok. This is a local tech conference hosted by friends at The Iron Yard.

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all photos by Jivan Dave

During those three days, I met people, talked with (relative) strangers, asked questions and got some great advice. It was an exhausting, but awesome time of learning and sharing ideas — with a little bit of kickball fun thrown in.

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all photos by Jivan Dave

If you’re like me and a bit intimidated by crowds of strangers (especially super talented ones), the best piece of advice I can give you: seek out opportunities to volunteer. I was one of several volunteers that helped at Greenville Grok. It gave me a job to do and let me stay behind the scenes at times, both things I prefer. But it also forced me out of my comfort zone, answering questions and interacting with other attendees.

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all photos by Jivan Dave

Aside from the volunteering duties, it would have been way too easy to sit in the corner and just watch everything going on around me. I will definitely be looking for ways to get involved in more events on a volunteer basis. As a part-time event organizer, I know that volunteers are crucial to the success of an event, plus, it’s fun to be behind the scenes, making things happen.

The biggest idea I took away from Grok was from Bryan Martin’s keynote. His advice to “Celebrate and Savor Checkpoints.” has come to mind so many times since I first heard it.

It applies to life, to work, and to everything in between. Pausing long enough to recognize and then savor the milestones that make up life is an important ability to develop. It breaks up impossible tasks into bite sized chunks and reminds you that progress is happening, no matter how much more has to be done.


Bryan Martin, by Jivan Dave

More words of wisdom from Bryan.

“If you can’t fix everything, just do a part and inspire others to do the same.”
“Problems are inevitable and temporary.”
“It’s all pretty ugly until it’s done.”

Bryan’s talk was incredibly inspiring, both in its delivery and sincerity. I’ve known Bryan for a few years now and honestly had no idea the extent of his talent. We all witnessed firsthand what it looks like to be passionate and humble at the same time.

Watch this video for just a glimpse of what I mean.